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Photos: Naoya Inoue Overcomes Nonito Donaire To Win WBSS

A bloodied Naoya Inoue won a bruising thriller over Nonito Donaire of the Philippines by unanimous decision Thursday to capture the WBA super bantamweight title. (photos by Naoki Fukuda)

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The fight, the bantamweight final of the World Boxing Super Series, earned the 26-year-old Japanese fighter the Muhammad Ali Trophy. Inoue, who entered the fight at Saitama Super Arena as the IBF bantamweight champ, improved to 19-0 in his pro career.

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Donaire opened a cut above Inoue's right eye in the second round. That forced the Japanese star, known as "Monster," to protect the eye and fight a cagey tactical battle that kept him ahead on points despite absorbing some punishing blows from his 36-year-old opponent.

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After a couple of even rounds, Inoue, now bleeding from the nose as well, put the pedal to the metal in the final minute of the fifth, backing Donaire to the ropes and raining blows on him until he was saved by the bell.

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Donaire battled back, however, now and then rocking the crowd favorite with some ferocious punches. Inoue, who had only needed to go the distance in two of his previous fights, showed he could stay in the ring and look for openings. A brutal Inoue left to the ribs brought Donaire to his knees in the 11th round.

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User Comments and Feedback
Comment by tophat1 on 11-08-2019

Brilliant fight. In a week where youtubers are making a mockery of the sport these guys remind the fans what the sport is all about

Comment by lowblows420 on 11-08-2019

Donaire won

Comment by royjonesjrKTFO on 11-08-2019

[QUOTE=MrFynest;20176250]Many people including myself thought Inoue was going to seriously hurt him.[/QUOTE] Donaire looked seriously hurt in the 11th round and was nearly taken out. He was lucky to be the bigger fighter otherwise he wouldn't have gone the distance.

Comment by epyh on 11-08-2019

Donaire was ko'd in the 11 th rd. But the ref wouldn't let Inoue finish him and gave Donaire 13 sec to get up. The fix was in for the fight to go the distance.

Comment by noStylez on 11-08-2019

Donaire fights anyone, dude put a good show. Great fight, Good learning experience for Inoue.

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