MAKING excuses is not part of Milan Melindo’s act.
The camp of the former International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior flyweight champion admitted Ryoichi Taguchi got the better of the Filipino in a unanimous decision win on Sunday in their unification title bout at the Ota City general gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan.
“That’s boxing sir,” said trainer Edito ‘Ala’ Villamor shortly after arriving from the Japanese capital on New Year’s Day.
“We lost to a better fighter (last night), but it was a great fight,” he added.
The 29-year-old Melindo, dubbed 'El Metodico,' was winning in the early rounds of the traditional Japanese New Year’s Eve title fight by going inside and pounding Taguchi with crunching body shots.
But his Japanese foe, the reigning World Boxing Association (WBA) title holder, made the proper adjustment halfway through, utilizing both his height and reach advantage to the hilt on the way to earning the judges nod by scores of 116-112, 117-111, and 117-111.
Both fighters were left bloodied at the end of the 12-round bout. Melindo sported a cut on both eyebrows, while Taguchi nursed a bloody forehead also due to a cut.
Villamor said Melindo stayed in Japan for a short vacation and won’t be arriving in the country until January 3. He added the stalwart of Cebu-based ALA boxing gym will rest for some time and plot their next course of action following the loss.