Japan’s Naoya Inoue turned an undisputed world champion at second weight on Tuesday after knocking out Philippines’ Marlon Tapales within the tenth spherical to win all 4 tremendous bantamweight belts.
The undefeated Inoue, nicknamed ‘Monster’, despatched Tapales to the canvas in Tokyo with an enormous proper hand so as to add the WBA and IBF titles to his personal WBC and WBO belts.
Inoue, who took his file to 26-0 with 23 KOs, turns into solely the second man to unify all 4 world titles in two totally different weight lessons.
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American Terence Crawford turned the primary after beating fellow countryman Errol Spence for all of the welterweight belts in July.
“I feel tremendous bantamweight is probably the most appropriate weight class for me in the mean time,” mentioned the 30-year-old Inoue.
“Subsequent yr and the yr after that, I need to show that I can change into a good stronger fighter.”
Inoue accomplished his journey by means of the bantamweight division in December final yr, changing into the primary undisputed world weight champion in half a century earlier than relinquishing his titles.
It took him simply two fights to change into the first-ever undisputed champion of the tremendous bantamweight division.
He defeated American Stephen Fulton in July in his debut on the weight to say the WBC and WBO belts.
However he needed to dig deep to beat Tapales, who clawed his method again into the struggle after Inoue floored him within the fourth spherical.
“He was very powerful and had a robust mentality,” Inoue mentioned.
“I feel the best way I knocked out such a robust fighter within the tenth spherical is a testomony to all the things I’ve completed, so I am relieved.”
Inoue instantly went on the assault towards Tapales, who upset Uzbekistan’s Murodjon Achhmadaliev by cut up choice in April to win the IBF and WBA titles.
Inoue landed some early punches whereas the 31-year-old Tapales remained in his defensive shell.
The Japanese fighter dropped his opponent on the finish of the fourth spherical after a collection of headshots, after which Tapales stood up and beat the counter.
Inoue received proper again to work at the beginning of the fifth, though Tapales additionally hit some large pictures.
Tapales steadied the ship, however Inoue maintained the higher hand and completed his opponent with a ferocious straight proper hand.
“He stored a poker face the entire time and did not present that my punches had been doing him any injury, so I used to be fairly shocked when he went down within the tenth spherical,” Inoue mentioned.
Tapales noticed his file drop to 37-4 with 19 KOs.
Inoue has gained world titles in 4 totally different weight lessons, additionally triumphing on the gentle flyweight and tremendous flyweight ranges.
He defeated England’s Paul Butler in December final yr to change into the primary undisputed bantamweight world champion since Panama’s Enrique Pinder in 1972.
He additionally turned solely the ninth undisputed world champion because the four-belt period started in 2004, and the primary within the bantamweight division.
After vacating his titles, his youthful brother Takuma claimed the WBA bantamweight belt with a win over Venezuela’s Liborio Solis in April.