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SPORTS SHORTS 69: RENE MARK CUARTO, THE NEW IBF WORLD MINIMUMWEIGHT CHAMPION


PhilBoxing.com





A new world champion for the Philippines emerged after Rene Mark Cuarto dethroned countryman Pedro Taduran via a close 12-round unanimous decision Saturday afternoon at the Bula Gym in General Santos City.

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Cuarto wrested the International Boxing Federation (IBF) minimumweight title belt and became the 45th world boxing champion of the Philippines. He is the fourth current Filipino world champion with IBF world super flyweight Champion Jerwin Ancajas, WBO world bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero and WBA world minimumweight champion Vic Saludar.

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Prior to his title fight with Taduran, Cuarto was the No. 3 IBF and No. 8 WBO contender. All three judges Roel Densing, Brembot Dulalas and Sabas Ponpon Jr. scored the fight 115-113 in favor of Cuarto. It was a good match-up between the aggressor in Taduran and the counter-puncher in Cuarto.

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Taduran, who fell to 14-3-1 with 11 KOs, was making the second defense of the title he won in 2019 against countryman Samuel Salva. His first defense against Daniel Valladares of Mexico ended with a technical draw as the challenger suffered a bad cut in the fight.

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It was the first fight for Taduran after a year of inactivity while Cuarto was coming off a 14-month layoff.

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"We had a good fight. Pedro was very tough," Cuarto (19-2-2) said with Pow Salud who streamed the whole event on his PowCast Facebook and YouTube pages.

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"We studied his style and we were able to employ our game plan. We really prepared hard for this. I'm so happy that we won. All of our sacrifices bore fruit," added Cuarto.

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"He hit me with a good shot but I trained well," admitted Cuarto after the match. "My heart took over to win this fight."

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When Cuarto was asked if he would be willing to give Taduran a rematch due to the very close decision, Cuarto gave everything to his trainer and promoter to decide. "Coach Nonoy Neri and Senator Manny (Pacquiao) will be the ones to decide what's the next step for me."

* * *

Taduran defended the title he won in 2019 against Samuel Salva. His first defense was against Daniel Valladares of Mexico and it ended with a technical draw as the challenger had a deep cut in the fight. Then Taduran ended his 17-month title reign with the loss to Cuarto.

* * *

Cuarto's record now stands at 19 wins 2 defeats 2 draws with 11 KO wins. He has a KO rate of 47.83% fighting a total of 133 rounds. He is aged 24 years and is from Jose Dalman (Ponot), Zamboanga del Norte.

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The orthodox fighter stands at 5′ 2″ or 157cm. Nicknamed "Mighty Mouse", he had his professional debut on June 28, 2014 winning over Rodante Suacasa of Surallah, South Cotabato by unanimous decision.

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Then he stopped Gilbert Torres by TKO, and decisioned Jason Sanchez. He suffered his first loss dealt by Jerald Paclar via unanimous decision.

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He went on to win six successive wins against Nestor Languido by TKO, Saddam Barambangan by TKO, JanJan Santos by majority decision, Jerome Clavite by UD, Jessie Suacasa by KO, and Ian Ligutan by UD.

* * *

His second bout with his tormentor Jerald Paclar resulted in a technical draw. His third bout with Paclar ended in a 7th round KO victory for Cuarto.

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Cuarto went on to win over Lyster Jun Pronco by KO, Rez Padrogane by TKO, China's Guangxiong Li by 3rd round KO, Bonjun Loperez by UD, and Rodel Tejares by KO.

* * *

He won over Clyde Azarcon by UD to win the vacant World Boxing Organization Oriental minimumweight title. Then he lost to Samuel Salva by UD, winning against Mike Kinaadman by TKO, and drew with Jayson Vayson, winning over Jayson Francisco by TKO, then the win over Taduran.

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LeBron James played his 1,300th NBA regular-season game by leading the Los Angeles Lakers to a 117-91 victory over the Golden State Warriors. James had 19 points plus six rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocked shots in 24 minutes of action.

* * *

He rested in all of the fourth quarter with the other starters from both teams as the Lakers dominated the game. The Lakers still played without star forward Anthony Davis but have currently won two in a row after losing five in six games.

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The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will have new competitions including 3x3 basketball, freestyle BMX, and madison cycling, as well as further mixed events.

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Under new IOC rules, the host organizing committee is allowed to add new sports to the Olympic programme and in these Games will see karate, sport climbing, surfing, and skateboarding to make their Olympic debuts, as well as the return of baseball and softball for the first time since 2008.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.


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