In front of a crowd at Wynn Palace Cotai in Macau, China featuring a super-fight between two 3-division Champions in pursuit of history at a 4th division, the vacant WBO Super-Flyweight title was won by Donnie ‘Ahas’ Nietes (42-1-5, 23KO) via ‘Split-Decision’ victory over Japan’s Kazuto Ioka (23-2-0, 13KO).
With scores widely contrasted from one another (to some concern), the final verdict went to the proud veteran, thus following the path of fellow countrymen Manny Pacquiao & Nonito Donaire, making Nietes officially the 3rd Filipino fighter in boxing history to become a 4-division Champion by defeating his greatest opponent to date.
After the debacle that happened 3 months prior where he firmly believed that he had achieved his goal against Aston Palicte, Nieted ended up winning the same belt that he believed he should’ve won that night on September 8th.
With a win of this magnitude to pair with his lofty achievements in his career, Nietes now looks like a surefire Hall of Famer, and at the very least, this boosts his credentials to where it will garner serious recognition when he officially hangs the gloves up.
Kazuto Ioka fought a tough bout, in what was a close, competitive fight that was back n forth with many ebbs and flows to the action, however fell JUST short of achieving his ultimate goal of becoming the 1st Japanese 4-division Champion in history.
The fight was fought at a remarkably high technical level with both boxers employing their full bag of tricks, with Nietes more effective upstairs and able to land his counter-punches to a good deal of success, and Ioka putting in a lot of work to the body, as the fight was predominantly fought in closed quarters, and in middle distance.
You got the sense that both fighters knew exactly what was on the line late, with the fight, and their legacies hanging in the balance, so they both went after it down the stretch like true Champions. Although Ioka didn’t pick up the victory here, he is only 29 years old, and is still at the peak of his powers in his prime. Ioka can, and presumably will, bounce back to compete with anyone they put in front of him in a talent-laden division at Super-Flyweight in pursuit of bolstering his own lofty resume looking forward.
Levi Martinez = 118 – 110 for DONNIE NIETES
Samuel Nieto = 116 – 112 for KAZUTO IOKA
Patricia Morse Jarman = 116 – 112 for DONNIE NIETES