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MELINDO DROPS YAEGASHI 3 TIMES EN ROUTE TO FIRST ROUND STOPPAGE; UNIFIES IBF JR FLYWEIGHT BELT (PHOTOS / VIDEO)

By Dong Secuya
PhilBoxing.com
21 May 2017



Milan 'El Metodico' Melindo became the latest full-fledged Filipino world champion after a sensational win over two-division world champion Akira Yaegashi of Japan at the Ariake Colosseum in Tokyo Sunday night.

Melindo (36-2-0, 13 KOs), the IBF Interim junior flyweight title holder, sent the usually durable Yaegashi (25-6-0, 13 KOs), the regular IBF junior flyweight champion, to the canvas three times in the first round before the Eddie Hernandez of the United States waived off the contest.

Reporting from ringside, journalist/matchmaker Joe Koizumi wrote, "It was so surprising that Yaegashi, well-known by his durability and gameness, so quickly suffered a shocking defeat at the hand of the Filipino battler who wasn’t regarded as a hard-puncher. Midway in the first round Milando connected with a well-timed left hook, which had the Japanese down on the seat of trunks. It didn’t look so damaging a knockdown, but Milando repeated a same left hook to the still unstable Yaegashi, flooring him again. The Japanese champ, making his third defense, recklessly fought back toe-to-toe and absorbed a solid left-right combination, badly hitting the deck for the third time in the first session."

Melindo previously fought for a world title twice where he lost both times first to Juan Francisco Estrada of Mexico and then to Javier Mendoza, also of Mexico. Last November, he won the IBF Interim world junior flyweight title over Teeraphong Utaida of Thailand.

Melindo, 29, thus joins Manny Pacquiao, Donnie Nietes, and Jerwin Ancajas in the list of current Filipino world titleholders and upped to three the Filipino victories in world title fights this year. Ancajas and Nietes previously won their world title fight assignments in January and April respectively.

Photos by Sumio Yamada.





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