By: William Holmes
Fight fans in the United States who are early risers were able to watch Top Rank Promotions’ Champions of Gold event from the Cotai Arena in Macau, China. The fans in Macau filled the arena early for the undercard fights as opposed to the sparse crowds you usually see on the undercards in the United States.
Photo: Chris Farina/Top Rank
The first bout of the main card was between Guillermo Rigondeaux (13-0) and Thai boxer Sod Kokietgym (63-2-1) for the WBA and WBO Super Bantamweight Titles. This was Rigondeaux’s last contracted fight with Top Rank Promotions.
Kokietgym won four world championships in kickboxing in four weight divisions, but his two losses have come to Daniel Ponce De Leon and he was a huge underdog against Rigondeaux.
Both boxers were southpaws but it was apparent early on that Rigondeaux had the far superior hand speed. Rigondeaux connects with an early left hand to the face of Kokietgym and was able to find his range with his jabs quickly. Kokietgym misses with an overhand left and then takes a head butt from Rigondeaux that sends him to the mat.
The referee gives Kokietgym time to recover from the head butt and he asks him if he’s ready to continue and he responds in the affirmative. Rigondeaux immediately jumps on him and sends him crashing to the mat again with a booming left hand. Kokietgym is still wobbly on his feet when he gets up around the count of eight and the referee immediately waives off the fight.
Guillermo Rigondeaux wins by knockout at 1:44 of the first round.
Gilberto Ramirez Sanchez (28-0) and Junior Talipeau (20-2-1) was the first fight scheduled to be televised on HBO 2 for the NABF and the WBO International Super Middleweight Titles.
Ramirez is an impressive young prospect who towered over Talipeau inside the ring. Ramirez, a southpaw, opened up by staying on the outside and was landing his straight left hand early on while staying out of the range of Talipeau. Ramirez connects with a perfect right uppercut that sends Talipeau to the mat. Talipeau is able to get back to his feet, but Ramirez meets him with another right uppercut which hurts Talipeau and unloads a combination near the ropes that sends Talipeau to the mat again. Talipeau gets up again, but is still on wobbly legs, and is met by an immediate combination from Ramirez again. A straight left and a straight right sends Talipeau to the mat again and the referee waives off the bout.
Three knockdowns in the first rou
The main event of the card was between China’s favorite son Zou Shiming (4-0) Luis De La Rosa (23-3-1) for the WBO International Flyweight Title.
De La Rosa was slightly shorter than Shiming and had difficulty getting within punching range. Shiming was showing good head and body movement in the first and was able to pop in and out of De La Rosa’s range while landing clean two punch combinations.
De La Rosa started the second round by landing a few good body shots, but Shiming was able to stop his offense quickly with a hard straight right hand. Shiming was mixing up his combinations to the body and head in the second round and continued to show good head and body movement.
The third round started off with some very good action as Shiming hurts De La Rosa with a combination but De La Rosa fired back. Shiming out landed De La Rosa in the third round and was more active with his punches, but De La Rosa was not backing down.
De La Rosa had a constant jab in his face in the fourth round while Shiming was able to slip most of De La Rosa’s counter punches. Shiming landed a three punch combination in the middle of the fourth that rocked his opponent, and De La Rosa was taking several hard punches. A push down by Shiming on De La Rosa occurred near the end of the round.
The crowd in Macao continued to roar at every punch Shiming landed in the fifth round as Shiming looked very comfortable in the fifth and cleanly outboxed De La Rosa. An accidental head butt occurred in the fifth round and opened up a cut over the left eye of De La Rosa.
De La Rosa’s cut was bleeding badly in the sixth round as Shiming was picking De La Rosa apart with quick in and out combinations. De La Rosa was able to snap the head of Shiming in the seventh round with a hard overhand right, but Shiming took the punch well and connected with several good flurries throughout the seventh round. A momentarily break happened in the seventh as Shiming’s tape was hanging off of his glove.
Shiming was comfortably ahead on the scorecards by the eighth round and he continued to pop with clean punches seemingly at will. De La Rosa needed a knockout in the final two rounds if he wanted to win, but Shiming was just too good of a boxer and never gave De La Rosa that opportunity.
The final scores were 99-91, 99-91, and 97-93 for Zou Shiming.
Undercard Quick Results:
Brian Viloria (34-4) defeats Jose Alfredo Zuniga (11-6) by KO at 1:42 of the fifth round in the flyweight division.
Mark Anthony Geraldo (31-4-3) defeats Efrain Perez (17-5)in the super flyweight division by decision with scores of 58-54, 58-54, and 57-55.
Egor Mekhontsev (4-0) defeats Mike Merafuentes (2-1) by TKO in the light heavyweight divisionwhen the fight was stopped by Merafuente’s corner at the end of the third round.
Rex Tso (14-0) defeated John Bajawa (12-6) by a fifth round TKO in super flyweight division at 0:48.
Ik Yang (16-0) defeated Rachamongkol Sor Pleonchit (14-8) by TKO at 1:40 of the third round in the lightweight division.
Kuok Kun Ng (4-0-2) defeated Beau O’Brien (4-0-1)by decision with scores of 60-54, 60-54, and 59-55 in the light middleweight division