Jonathan Taconing KOs former champ Hirales in Mexico

Ryan Songalia

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Jonathan Taconing KOs former champ Hirales in Mexico
Jonathan Taconing of Zamboanga del Norte solidified his position as a top junior flyweight contender with a knockout of former champion Ramon Garcia Hirales

MANILA, Philippines – Jonathan Taconing made the most out of his second fight abroad, stopping former world titleholder Ramon Garcia Hirales in the tenth round at Unidad Deporiva Martin Alarcon in Metepic, Mexico on Sunday, April 5. 

From the start, Taconing (21-2-1, 18 knockouts) of Siocon, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines swarmed the former WBO junior flyweight champ Hirales (20-6-1, 12 KOs) with his heavy-handed southpaw clubs.

Perhaps wary of his last time fighting abroad – when he outslugged Thai Kompayak Porpramook for the WBC junior flyweight titleholder but lost a technical decision – Taconing closed the fight in definitive fashion, landing three right hooks that sent his opponent reeling into the ropes where the fight was stopped with just 7 seconds remaining. 

“I’m very happy because it’s the hometown of the opponent,” Taconing, 28, tells Rappler.

Taconing, who has now won 8 straight fights, was risking his number 3 ranking with the WBC, which would set him up for a title eliminator to face the winner between WBC 108 pound champion Pedro Guevara and Richard Claveras on April 11. 

“We told Tata [Taconing] ‘It’s now or never. If we lose we go back to square one,’” Liza Elorde, the wife of Taconing’s manager Johnny Elorde, tells Rappler. “Tata with his team really trained hard for this. Next is the WBC world title.”

Hirales suffers his second career knockout loss, with the other coming against pound-for-pound candidate Roman Gonzalez. Hirales had fought once before in the Philippines, fighting current RING magazine junior flyweight champion Donnie Nietes to a competitive loss. –

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