Photos: Sumio Yamada
IBF junior bantamweight Jerwin Ancajas (28-1-2, 19 KOs) barely retained his title with a twelve round draw against Alejandro Santiago (16-2-5, 7 KOs) on Friday night at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. The aggressive Santiago gave Ancajas all he could handle, and in the end scores were 116-112 Ancajas, 118-111 Santiago, 114-114.
“It was a good, entertaining fight,” Ancajas said. “My timing was a little off. He was a little awkward. I felt like I pressed the fight and did enough to win.”
Said Santiago: “Everyone saw the fight, and everyone saw that I won the fight clearly.”
Ancajas was forced into a firefight against the hard-charging Santiago, who was making his first attempt at a world title. Santiago landed a flush combination on Ancajas’ jaw to end the second round, a sign that it would be a long evening for Ancajas.
It was the stiffest test of Ancajas’ two-year title reign, a closely contested affair with a number of razor-thin rounds.
With title defense number six under his belt, Ancajas now turns his attention to lucky number seven.
“I still want all the champions at 115,” Ancajas said. “Nothing has changed.”