MANILA – Filipino boxer Romero Duno captured the WBO NABO lightweight belt after a ninth round technical split decision win over Mexican Juan Antonio Rodriguez on Friday at the Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, California.
The Cotabato native fighter bagged the vacant championship by getting the nod of two judges at 85-84 and 86-83. The other judge sided with the Puebla, Mexico-native Rodriguez at 85-84.
“I feel good. Thank you so much to everyone who came. I want to thank my opponent and his team. This was a great fight,” Duno said after the close match.
He added: “I don’t know why, but when Mexicans and Filipinos fight, we always fight hard and strong. We fight tough. In my next fight, I would fight anyone. It all depends on my promoters.”
Both fighters were into tight exchange since the start of the match until the referee decided to call for halt at the ninth when Rodriguez complained about his vision.
“The referee asked me if I could see,” said Rodriguez. “I said that it was hard for me to see, so they stopped the fight. I didn’t have enough time to prepare, but that doesn’t affect what happened.”
With the victory, Duno improved his record to 20-1-0 win-loss-draw, including 15 stoppage wins, while Rodriguez saw his boxing slate dropped to 30-8-0, with 26 wins by knockouts./PN