Saludar keeps WBO world title over Taniguchi

Roy Luarca
Saludar earns the nod of the 3 judges for his first successful title defense of the 105-pound crown

STILL ON TOP. Filipino Vic Saludar (right) wins via unanimous decision over Japanese Masataka Taniguchi. Photo by Jiji Press/AFP

MANILA, Philippines – Vic Saludar stopped Masataka Taniguchi‘s domination of Filipino fighters Tuesday night, February 26, winning by unanimous decision and keeping the World Boxing Organization minimumweight crown at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo.

Banking on accurate jabs and overall ring generalship, Saludar earned the nod of the 3 judges for his first successful title defense of the 105-pound crown.

The 28-year-old Saludar raised his record to 19-3 with 10 knockouts, while Taniguchi dropped to 11-3 with 7 knockouts.

It was Taniguchi’s first loss to a Filipino after beating 6 of Saludar’s compatriots.

Though shorter by 3 centimeters, Saludar turned out to be more accurate and faster with his fists and proved that his triumph over another Japanese, Ryuya Yamanaka, in Kobe last year was no fluke.

Saludar came in at 104.72 lbs, while Taniguchi, a 25-year-old southpaw, checked in at 104.06 lbs.

A former six-time national amateur champion, Saludar dropped his initial title bid to Kosei Tanaka on New Year’s Eve in 2015 in Nagoya via 6th-round knockout.

Now, he is in on the positive side at 2-1.

Saludar’s siblings are also boxers – Rey is a gold medalist in the 2010 Guangzhou (China) Asian Games, while Froilan is a former world title contender. – Rappler.com