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Thursday. July 14. 2022

Ex-World champ Higa overcomes knockdown to earn split decision in 8-rounder

Former World Boxing Council flyweight champion Daigo Higa of Shisei Boxing Gym, overcoming a fourth-round knockdown, unleashed a barrage of left-and-right combinations from various angles, earned a split decision over former WBO Asia-Pacific super flyweight champion Froilan Saludar of the Philippines in a bantamweight eight-rounder at Ota City General Gymnasium in Tokyo.

It was the 26-year-old Higa’s first fight since losing his WBO Asia-Pacific bantamweight title to Ryosuke Nishida of Muto Boxing Gym in his first title defense in April last year.

Higa suffered a severe cut above his right eyelid in the third round due to an accidental head butt and was sent to the canvas in the fourth stanza as the 33-year-old Saludar connected with a hard right to the head. Higa wobbled up for a mandatory eight count.

Hard-hitting Higa started visibly rallying from the sixth round and almost decked his Filipino opponent in the seventh round by staging a fierce attack. Higa continued his offense in the eighth and final round by landing hard left hooks by putting his opponent against a corner only to fail to score a knockdown as Saludar managed to hang tough.

With the win, Higa improved his record to 18 wins, including 17 KOs, against two losses and a draw. For his part, Saludar fell to a 32-6-1 win-loss-draw tally with 22 KOs.

After the fight, Higa said, ‘’I got lucky because I thought I had lost the fight. I will try not to be hit even when exchanging blows so that my fans can feel at ease.’’

The fight served as a chief supporting card for the WBO world super flyweight title match.