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Saturday. January 28. 2023

Ex-world champ Yabuki stops Chacon in 11th in IBF light flyweight challenger deciding match

Former World Boxing Council light flyweight champion Masamichi Yabuki of Midori Boxing Gym, unleashing a barrage of left and right combinations to the head, stopped Ronald Chacon of Venezuela in the 11th round on Jan. 28 in Nagoya in the International Boxing Federation light flyweight challenger deciding match.

The technical knockout of the scheduled 12-rounder came 2 minutes and 35 seconds into the round when Yabuki sent Chacon, the IBF’s seventh-ranked light flyweight, tottering back to the ropes with rapid one-two combination blows, prompting the referee to step in to call off the fight without bothering to count.

It was the 30-year-old Yabuki’s second straight victory since losing his world title to Kenshiro Teraji of BMB Boxing Gym with a devastating knockout in their direct rematch last March.

With the day’s victory, however, Yabuki has the right to take a crack at the IBF light flyweight title held by Sivenathi Nontshinga of South Africa.

After the fight, Yabuki said from the ring, ‘’I am relieved now. Since my hands hurt in the fight, I thought I would have to go the distance. My opponent was tougher than I had expected. But I was able to finish the fight in a good manner. I want to become a world champion once again.’’

Fighting at Nagoya Congress Center event hall, Yabuki, the IBF’s eighth-ranked light flyweight, scored knockdowns twice in the seventh round and once in the eighth stanza before the penultimate round stoppage.

With the victory, Yabuki improved his record to 15 wins, including 14 KOs, against four losses. The 31-year-old Chacon now has a 28-2-1 win-loss-draw tally with 20 KOs.

Both fighters tipped the scales at the class limit of 108 pounds.