Jaime Munguia defeated Takeshi Inoue by unanimous decision to retain his WBO junior middleweight title.
Mexican boxer Munguia held off previously unbeaten Inoue after 12 brutal rounds at the Toyota Center in Houston on Saturday.
Munguia (32-0, 26 KOs) was made to earn the victory, with judges scoring the fight 120-108, 120-108 and 119-109.
The fight seemed closer and few more competitive than the scorecards had indictaed.
The 22-year-old Munguia’s power proved too much for Japanese opponent Inoue, who dropped to a 13-1-1 record.
Munguia was surprised with Inoue’s ability to take hard punches.
The young Mexican boxer is planning to work on his ability to control the distance, as he constantly allowed his opponent to get very close, to pin him against the ropes and unload with punches.
“It was a great fight. He was a great warrior,” said Munguia.
“It was a great battle for me. I was surprised by his ability to take punches. He took a lot of punches to the head and to the body. He took punches that would have dropped anyone else. I feel I got a lot of experience from this fight. I will keep working on using my distance. There were times where he was able to cut the distance, and I want to work on that.”
Inoue made no excuses over the loss and hopes to polish his skills and return to action in the future in the United States.
“With 31 wins and no losses, Munguia was not just a power puncher but a great boxer,” said Inoue.
“We both had the skill to kill the other’s boxing style. He was the better fighter tonight. I hope to get better and come back to the United States to fight again.”