DAVAO City - And the misfortunes of Filipino boxers continue.
Rey `Boom Boom” Bautista became the latest casualty in Philippine boxing after losing to Jose Ramirez of Mexico by split decision in their World Boxing Organization (WBO) international featherweight title fight Saturday night at the University of Southeastern Philippines here.
Judge Eduard Ligas scored it 114-111 for the Filipino, but Salven Lagumbay and Danrex Tapdasan both had it 114-111 in favor of the Mexican.
Bautista is the recent high-profiled Filipino boxer to lose against a foreign opponent after the great Manny Pacquiao, Brian Viloria, Malcolm Tunacao, and Brian Viloria.
Portent of things to come showed up early in the first round when Ramirez connected on a short but solid left that bounced and knocked down Bautista off the ropes to the stun of the animated crowd of 10,000.
Although dominated and very tentative, the 26-yeard-old Filipino, whose mind appears to be lingering elsewhere, fought his way back and had his best round in the eight when a big right found its way and put the Mexican down on the canvas.
Unfortunately, Bautista failed to capitalize as Ramirez pummeled him with vicious combinations in the final four rounds.
Bautista, cut above the right eye and at the left side of his ear, looked ready to go in the final two rounds that he tried to delay the fight by clinching heavily on Ramirez and twice went to his corner to have his untied gloves and shoe laces fixed earning him jeers from the crowd.
Ramirez went down, laid on his back, and cried unabashedly when the decision was announced as chants of Ramirez! Ramirez! Ramirez! reververated inside the venue.
Bautista’s record now stands at 34-3, with 25 KOs, while Ramirez improved to 25-3 with 15 KOs.
In the main undercard, Arthur Villanueva retained his Orient Pacific Boxing Federation (OPBF) super-flyweight title after scoring a unanimous decision over a game Marco Demecillo in the best fight of the night.
All three judges scored it 118-109, 119-108, 119-108 for Villanueva.
In a highly-entertaining 10-round flyweight match, Rocky Fuentes won by unanimous decision over Mexican funnyman Juan Kantun.
Fuentes all won by similar scores of 98-88 as he knocked down the Mexican in the opening, third, and seventh rounds, respectively. The Filipino himself went down in the fourth in what appeared to be a slip but was ruled as knock down.