Kyrus Mathew Pampanga ||
Powering through the legend, Cuban underdog Yordenis Ugas (27-4-0, 12 KOs) held off Manny Pacquiao (62-8-2, 39 KOs) to a striking defeat via unanimous decision during the WBA welterweight championship last Sunday, Philippine Standard Time, at the jam-packed T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada.
Ugas secured dominance over Pacquiao’s scrambling defense with a combination of a quick double left jab and right hook by the 10th round. This play defined the match’s succeeding rounds, ensuring a triumphant homecoming for the Cuban.
With that, Yordenis Ugas, 35, had outclassed one of boxing’s greats, despite being an 11-day replacement, through his precise low blows, terminating jabs, staggering defense, and hijacking counterpunches right from the onset of the 36-minute-long match.
“I told you I am the champion of the WBA and I showed it tonight. A lot of respect for him, but I won the fight,” Ugas stated contentedly through a translator after the decision. “We only had two weeks of training, but I listened to my corner and it all worked out.”
Initiating the play with pressure, the People’s Champ kicked things off by showcasing his swift jabs and patent combinations, but the younger, taller Olympian unleashed massive right overhand punches that left no openings for the latter to bounce back.
In his element, the Cuban fighter laid traps for Pacquiao in the mid-rounds and waited for the opportunity to launch dismantling counterpunches alongside power combinations, hitting precisely anytime Pacquiao would get close.
Not leaving without a fight, Pacquiao and Ugas were head-to-head in the tenth round as PacMan continuously blocked the sharp rights and on-point punches, except for Ugas’s last-minute, deciding, lethal move.
Fighting the best rounds of his life, Ugas rampaged through the concluding moments of the match, seizing victory as he threw groundbreaking jabs and consistently applied pressure to the now-bleeding Pacquiao.
Manny Pacquiao, 42 and potential presidential candidate, gallantly accepted the defeat and apologized to Filipino fans. Regardless of the fact that this could have been his last stint in boxing, Pacquiao has not decided whether or not this will be the swan song of a 26-year-long career.