Rigondeaux tops Agbeko in unanimous decision
WBA and WBO super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux
retained his titles with a 12-round, unanimous decision over former
two-time bantamweight champ Joseph Agbeko on Saturday.
All three judges had Rigondeaux winning every round, with
identical scores of 120-108.
”I came to do what I need to do,” he said through an
interpreter. ”Every time out there, I try to improve. I’m
improving every day. I had no problems in any round.”
Rigondeaux, a native of Cuba now living in Miami, delivered a
The two-time Olympic gold medalist is considered one of boxing’s
top pound-for-pound fighters, but draws criticism for his
He generated cheers from the crowd in the sixth round by landing
five straight powerful left crosses to Agbeko’s midsection, but
otherwise was content to stay on the outside and pepper his
Ghanaian opponent with right jabs and left hooks before dancing out
Agbeko also deserved criticism for the slow pace, averaging only
29 punches per round.
”I felt strong throughout the fight, it was just tough to get
to him,” Agbeko said. ”I hurt my right hand early and couldn’t
throw it much. But it was hard to catch him. He’s very fast and
he’s got great footwork.”
Rigondeaux was making his fourth defense of the WBA title he
gained by knocking out former champion Rico Ramos in the sixth
round in January 2012. He followed with a fifth-round TKO over Teon
Kennedy and a 12-round decision over Roberto Marooquin before
adding the WBO belt with his stunning, 12-round decision over
Nonito Donaire last April.
Agbeko was a two-time IBF bantamweight champ who made the jump
from 118 pounds (53.5 kilograms) to 122 (55) for the first time
In the co-feature, middleweight James Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs)
registered a sixth-round TKO over formerly unbeaten prospect Glen
Referee Steve Smoger halted the fight at 38 seconds in the sixth
when Kirkland pinned Tapia against the ropes and landed a half
dozen unanswered punches.
In the night’s other top fight, English middleweight Matthew
Macklin (30-5, 20 KOs) earned a 10-round, unanimous decision over
Lamar Russ (14-1).