Filipino boxers

Jerusalem wrests WBC minimumweight crown from Shigeoka in Japan

Roy Luarca

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Jerusalem wrests WBC minimumweight crown from Shigeoka in Japan

CHAMPION. Melvin Jerusalem wins the WBC minimumweight belt.

Sanman Boxing Facebook page

Melvin Jerusalem returns to world champion status as he outclasses Japan's Yudai Shigeoka in a split decision win for the WBC minimumweight belt

MANILA, Philippines – Melvin Jerusalem knocked down Yudai Shigeoka twice and escaped with a split decision to become the new World Boxing Council minimumweight champion on Sunday, March 31, at the International Conference Hall in Nagoya, Japan.

Using counter rights, Jerusalem decked Shigeoka in the second round and again in the sixth to earn the nod of two judges who both scored the 12-rounder 114-112 and negated the 113-114 decision handed out by the third judge.

Trailing, 73-77, after eight rounds, Shigeoka worked hard behind combinations to take the next three.

Although tiring in the last round, Jerusalem wisely used snappy shots and held on to Shigeoka to raise his record to 22-3 with 12 knockouts and end the Filipinos’ string of defeats in Japan, including those of Marlon Tapales in December and Jerwin Ancajas and Jonas Sultan in February.

Shigeoka tasted his first defeat after eight wins spiked by five knockouts.

Well-prepared by trainer Michael Domingo, Jerusalem also came through with body shots that stopped Shigeoka’s repeated assaults in the third and fourth rounds.

The 30-year-old Jerusalem, pride of Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon, is one of the stalwarts of Sanman Promotions headed by JC Manangquil, who predicted that his ward would upstage Shigeoka.

Earlier, Jake Amparo failed in his first world title crack when he got floored by Ginjiro Shigeoka with a wicked body shot in the second round.

Amparo, a last-minute replacement for compatriot ArAr Andales, dropped to 14-6-1 with 3 knockouts.

In retaining the International Boxing Federation minimum crown, Ginjiro climbed to 11-0 with 9 knockouts. –

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