By James Goyder
Having reached the historic 50-0 mark earlier this year Wanheng Menayothin added another win to his perfect professional record today. The Thai beat Pedro Taduran by decision in Nakhon Sawan to successfully defend his WBC 105lbs belt for the tenth time.
The victory allows Wangeng to pass the 50-0 unbeaten streak set by former five division world champion Floyd Mayweather, last August in Las Vegas. Mayweather has since retired from the sport.
The champion started slowly, as he has a tendency to do, and there was very little action in the opening round. Taduran picked up the pace in the second stanza and started to really take the fight to Wanheng but found himself getting picked off by a laser like straight right hand.
There was good action in the third round too with Taduran attacking with bursts of punches but Wanheng scoring repeatedly with that right cross. The referee repeatedly intervened to warn the Filipino for low blows and headbutts, although if he was fouling it certainly didn’t appear deliberate.
Taduro was on the receiving end of more short, straight punches from the right hand of Wanheng in the fourth. He received another blow at the end of the round when the WBC’s open scoring was revealed, the champion was ahead by margins of 40-36 (x 2) and 39-37.
The pace slowed in the middle of the fight but Taduran received another setback when the referee harshly decided to deduct a point during the eighth round. He had previously been warned to keep his punches up but it represented a serious setback for a fighter who already knew he was behind on the scorecards.
At the end of the eighth the judges had all scored the fight in Wanheng’s favour, 78-74 twice and 79-74. It meant Taduran would need to win all four of the remaining rounds just to secure a draw and he took the fight to the champion in the ninth, but was repeatedly tagged by right hands.
Taduran did land a looping left hook but whenever the southpaw decided to step up the pace he found himself on the receiving end of those straight right punches. With Wanheng enjoying a comfortable advantage on the scorecards the end of the fight was anticlimactic.
However there was still time for the referee to get involved, deducting another point from Taduran following a supposed low blow in the penultimate round. Again, the Filipino had received prior warnings but it still seemed an unnecessary intervention when the foul in question had been far from obvious.
Open scoring meant there was no drama surrounding the decision. It was merely a question of waiting to see what margin Wanheng had won by and the cards read 115-111, 118-108 and 117-110 in favour of the undefeated WBC 105lbs champion.
The referee didn’t do Taduran any favours but ultimately it was Wanheng’s accuracy that made the difference. The Thai improves to 51-0, his opponent drops to 12-2 but gave a good account of himself in his first fight outside of the Philippines and first world title match.
On the undercard Noknoi CPFreshmart (67-5) won a rematch with Abdul Baranov (0-4). He stopped the same opponent in the third earlier this year, second time round they went the distance with the Thai scoring a knockdown and winning a decision after six rounds.