By Joe Koizumi
Unbeaten WBC light-flyweight champ Naoya Inoue (7-0, 6 KOs), 107.75, Japan, retained his belt, battering Thailander Samartlek Kokietgym (17-5, 5 KOs), 107.25, from all angles, dropping him twice and finally halting him with furious flurry, at 1:08 of the eleventh round, in Tokyo, Japan.
Inoue, a 21-year-old wunderkind, who won the crown in just his sixth pro bout (after an amateur mark of 75-6, 48 stoppages), peppered the game Thailander with effective shots upstairs and downstairs, and send him to the deck in the fourth and sixth.
But seasoned Samartlek, 29, displayed unbelievable durability. However, when Inoue yet again accelerated his attack midway in round eleven, Mexican referee Gelasio Perez made a well-timed and well-received halt to save the battered challenger from further punishment.
Ex-Olympic gold medalist in London, Japan’s middleweight prospect, WBC#12 Ryota Murata (5-0, 4 KOs), 161.25, defeated Mexican national champ Adrian Luna (17-3-1, 11 KOs), 162, by a unanimous decision (98-92, 99-91, 100-90) over ten hard-fought rounds.