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Round Up: Donaire Switches Stance, TKOs Marquez

Round Up: Donaire Switches Stance, TKOs Marquez


Fight: Champion NONITO 'FILIPINO FLASH' DONAIRE, 24-1, 16 KOs, San Leandro, Calif. vs. HERNAN 'TYSON' MARQUEZ, 27-2, 20 KOs, Empalme, Me

Division: WBA Interim Super Flyweight Championship - 12 Rds.

Result: Donaire wins by TKO in the eighth.

Detail: In the run-up to the fight, the chatter in boxing circles and in the media centered on Donaire's weight--specifically, the champ's almost certain move up from the 115-pound level. His body was changing, and, anyway, the Filipino had proven himself in the division. Many felt the time had come to move on.

Donaire felt the same way. In an exclusive video interview with Top Rank, he said that this fight would be his last as a super flyweight. "I don't think I can make it anymore," Donaire explained. Adding, "I'm just excited to be moving up in weight."

But before Donaire--who burst onto the boxing scene with a devastating one-punch knock-out of then-defending champ Vic Darchinyan in 2007--could go up, he'd have to face the hungry Marquez.

Not that Donaire was taking his latest opponent lightly. "I know that Marquez is coming off a loss and that makes him very dangerous," Donaire said before the fight, "as he will try to get back in the winning track. He is a strong guy, and I will have to fight him smart. I expect him to come at me, and I will be ready for him."

For the first four rounds, Donaire looked more unsteady than ready. The champ had a legit reason, however. Instead of fighting as a right-hander, a hip injury forced him to go southpaw.

Marquez tried to take advantage of Donaire's uncertain movements. The challenger neutralized Donaire's reach and height by coming in close and firing shots. By the end of the third, Marquez had gotten in some good licks.

But the champ was never in any danger. Indeed, the fight was dead even going into the fifth, when, unfortunately for Marquez, Donaire reverted back to his natural stance. The southpaw style was revealed for what it was: an experiment born of necessity.

The change in Donaire's confidence was apparent from the beginning of the round. His speed and accuracy allowed the champ to drop Marquez at least once and probably a second time, though Marquez literally held onto to Donaire, thereby avoiding the count.

Marquez would have no such luck in the eighth. Weakened by Donaire's earlier assault, Marquez went down in the final seconds of the round, courtesy of an expert three-piece by Donaire that ended in a brutal left hook.

In the post fight interview, Donaire made his future plans plain. He wants to move up and battle bantamweight champ Fernando Montiel.

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