NAHA – Daigo Higa scored a first round knockout of Mexico’s Moises Fuentes to win the second defense of his WBC flyweight title on Sunday.
The 22-year-old Higa, improved to 15-0 in his pro career with every win coming by knockout. Fuentes, the ninth-ranked challenger and a former world champ, saw his pro record drop to 25-5 with one draw.
The fight in Okinawa Prefectural Budokan in Naha, the next city over from Higa’s hometown of Urasoe, started with both fighters landing jabs and combinations. But about two minutes in, the 32-year-old Fuentes began to stagger.
With 33 seconds left in the round, Higa bludgeoned him with a left and added a right just before Fuentes dropped to his knees and refused to get up.
“I came into this fight looking for a knockout, so I guess it’s cool that I did just that,” Higa said. “I’m happiest about being able to have a fight at home.”
Higa’s 15 straight knockouts ties the record for a Japanese boxer held by Tsuyoshi Hamada and Akibee Ushiwakamaru, and extends Higa’s Japanese record for most consecutive knockouts to start a pro career.
IN OTHER NEWS: Today, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board decided to maintain the financial suspension of AIBA and demanded a new report on AIBA governance by April 30th . This decision was made despite AIBA’s fulfilment of the IOC’s request to submit a Progress Report outlining all steps AIBA was asked to take and continues to take to improve its governance.
This decision is extremely disappointing for AIBA as it hoped the IOC Executive Board would have understood that the processes necessary to implement even more measures require more time and that the positive steps already taken in recent times are evidence of AIBA’s strong efforts and willingness to reform.
Over the next six months AIBA will be in the process of a complete organisational review, which will lead to the ‘New Foundation Plan’ for AIBA. This plan and the recommendations produced will be discussed during the AIBA Executive Committee meeting in July and an update will be provided to the IOC in the requested April 30th report.
In the meantime, AIBA will continue its efforts to convince the IOC of its determination to not repeat any of the past mistakes and its commitment to a fresh, positive future centered on good governance and sound management.