Michael Dasmariñas secures world title shot, decisions Kenny Demecillo
MANILA, Philippines—Up-and-coming Filipino boxer Michael Dasmariñas moved a step closer in his bid to become a major boxing world champion Saturday night.
Dasmariñas topped compatriot Kenny Demecillo on points in a slugfest to become the mandatory challenger for the IBF bantamweight title in the main event of Rising Stars at Resorts World Manila.
“I really gave my best in this fight. All my hard work paid off with this win,” said Dasmariñas (29-2-1, 19 KOs) in Filipino after his unanimous decision victory. The judges had scored the bout, 116-112, 115-113, 117-111.
The 26-year-old Dasmariñas endured a cut above his right eye midway through the ninth round due to accidental clash of heads and hurdled a game and gritty opponent in Demecillo (14-5-2, 8 KOs).
Dasmariñas, the International Boxing Organization champion, used the ring to his advantage and went to work in the early rounds to set the tone.
But Demecillo, who was an easy target for Dasmariñas in the first three rounds, kept coming forward.
Dasmariñas’ plan was to hit then keep his distance from Demecillo. He slowed down in the later rounds, but somehow mustered enough strength in the last two rounds to keep Demecillo at bay.
Demecillo had his moments but Dasmariñas more often that not, got the better of their exchanges.
The IBF world title is currently held by undefeated Emmanuel Rodriguez of Puerto Rico.
Rodriguez (19-0, 12 KOs) is slated for a title defense against Japanese superstar Naoya Inoue, who is also yet to be beaten with 15 of his 17 wins by knockout, on May 18 in the semifinals of the World Boxing Super Series.
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