By: Sean Crose
The WBA and WBC junior flyweight titles were on the line Friday night in Quebec. The 16-0 Kim Clavel was putting her WBC title on the line while the 28-2 Jessica Nery Plata was putting her WBA title on the line. The fight, which was aired live on ESPN+ was scheduled for ten two minutes rounds. It didn’t get a whole lot of attention beforehand, but the bout ended up being quite a barn burner.
Clavel had a strong first, employing an effective jab and getting her opponent against the ropes before the end of the round. The second was close and exciting, with each fighter tagging the other. Clavel was fighting in her native Canada, but it was clear the fight would be no walk in the park for her. Plata did an excellent job putting her punches together in the third. Things remained exciting in the fourth, which was also an extremely close round that saw each fighter throwing and landing well.
Plata’s fast hands seemed to tell the story through a good part of the fifth, but Clavel may have ended up winning it through some excellent punching. With that in mind, Clavel finished the round with her face bloodied. Clavel maintained distance well in the sixth, landing cleanly while trying to keep away from Plata’s punches. Yet it was Plata’s punches that appeared to tell the story in the seventh.
Clavel was able to employ effective footwork in the eighth, but Plata’s cleaner punches may have edged it for her. The fight was close enough, however, to be difficult to call. The ninth proved to be explosive. Each fighter was going full bore, throwing and landing with power and determination. The tenth and final round was also explosive and very close – though Plata hit Clavel hard after the final bell.
The judges ended up scoring the fight for Plata.
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