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Inoue vs Nery: Japanese Champ Defends Super Bantamweight Title

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Naoya Inoue of Japan celebrates with his champion belts after defeating Luis Nery of Mexico in the fight for the unified WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF super bantamweight world titles in Tokyo [Hiro Komae/AP]

(CTN News) – World super bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue defended his title at the Tokyo Dome after stopping Mexican Luis Nery in the sixth round.

On Monday, Nery stunned the 45,000 fans at the famous venue when he floored the unbeaten “Monster” with a huge left hand.

But Inoue got up and knocked down his Mexican opponent in the next round, then sent him back to the canvas again in the fifth before finishing him with a right hook in the sixth round.

Although knocking him down was great, what about that first-round surprise? Inoue, 31, asked.

“That fires you up as a boxer. I was energized by it.”

Earlier in February 1990, 42-1 underdog James “Buster” Douglas beat unbeaten heavyweight champion Mike Tyson at the Tokyo Dome. As the main event in the first boxing event at Tokyo Dome in 34 years, I had a lot of pressure on me, but it gave me strength,” Inoue said.

Inoue has a 27-0 record and 24 knockout victories.

Having become the undisputed super bantamweight world champion in December, it was his first fight since then.

It has taken only two men since 2004 to become undisputed world champions at two different weights. Terence Crawford was the first to do so.

When the 31-year-old entered the Tokyo Dome with all four world championship belts at stake, fans welcomed him with rapturous applause.

Nery threw the champion to the ground, causing huge upsets. Nevertheless, it energised Inoue, and he outran Nery in the second round. As the fight progressed, Inoue landed more ferocious blows, and in round five, a left hook sent his opponent to the mat again.

During the sixth round, Inoue downed Nery for the third time.

Former two-division world champion Nery was fighting in Japan for the first time since losing his bantamweight title in 2018. As a result, he was banned from fighting in Japan, but the country’s Boxing Commission approved his fight against Inoue.

Tokyo Dome fans booed Nery when he was introduced. His record dropped to 35-2 with 27 knockouts. For only his third fight, Inoue defeated Americans Stephen Fulton and Marlon Tapales for a clean sweep of the titles last year.

Following his undisputed bantamweight world title in 1972, he moved up in the weight class.

Yoshiki Takei of Japan defeated Australian defending champion Jason Moloney by unanimous decision on the undercard.

During Moloney’s second title defense, Takei started strongly before coming back into the match.

An raucous crowd roared as the Japanese fighter, a former kickboxer who had won all eight of his previous boxing matches, took the title.


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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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