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Canizales beats Konishi to win WBA 108lb belt

By Joe Koizumi
Photos: Sumio Yamada

Unbeaten Venezuelan Carlos Canizales (20-0-1, 16 KOs), 106.75, acquired the vacant WBA light-flyweight belt when he dropped also undefeated Japanese Reiya Konishi (15-1, 5 KOs), 108, in round three, withstood Konishi’s furious retaliation and strong pressure, and displayed a last surge to earn a close but unanimous decision over twelve hard-round rounds on Sunday in Kobe, Japan.

The official tallies were as follows: Stefano Caruozza (Italy) 114-113, Ferlin Marsh (New Zealand) 115-112, Stanley Christodoulou (South Africa) 116-111, all for the fast-circling footworker. The referee was Pinito Prayadsab (Thailand).

Konishi maintained the pressure and seemingly weakened Canizales with persistent body bombardments. The audience thought Konish overcame his early deficits on points and seized a slght come-from-behind victory, but the judges might have evaluated the Venezuelan’s desperate attack down the stretch.

(More to come)

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