Donnie Nietes figured in controversy in his in-ring return during Probellum Revolution, Sunday morning (Manila time) at the Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai, UAE.
Nietes figured in a bizarre split draw against Norbelto Jimenez.
How bizarre was it?
After 10 hard-fought rounds, confusion struck. Jimenez thought it was a 12-round contest, but the schedule was only for 10. The fight then headed to the scorecards.
The judges couldn’t split the two men, with scores of 96-94 Nietes, 96-94 Jimenez, and 95-95. This meant the bout ended in a draw, with Nietes keeping hold of his belt in the process.
“I felt I controlled it from the first round, then in the seventh round he was running around the ring,” said Nietes, whose record now stands at 43-1-6 with 23 knockouts. “I noticed that he fights really dirty. I’m 39-years-old, and the key to this game is discipline.
“I was able to make it out of the last round as still the champion. It depends on the promoter if they want to schedule a rematch again.”
“I feel all the crowd know that I should have been the winner,” said Jimenez (30-9-6, 16KOs), on the other hand. “The fight was meant to be 12 rounds, and they put it down two rounds because they don’t trust their fighter. If Nietes wants to win a world title, then he has to face me again.”
Edwards retains crown versus Mama
In the main event, Sunny Edwards once again displayed his elite boxing skills as he defeated Jayson Mama to make the first defense of his IBF flyweight title.
Edwards (17-0, 4 knockouts) was a level above throughout the fight. He even overcame a nasty cut early into the contest that could have potentially caused an issue.
The 25-year-old ensured that wouldn’t be the case though, dominating proceedings and putting the exclamation point on the performance. He dropped Mama (16-1, 9 knockouts) in round 10.
Mama lasted the distance, but there was only one winner in the end, with all three judges scoring it heavily in the favor of Edwards, as he extended his unbeaten record in style.
“To all of my fellow countrymen, thank you for supporting me,” said Mama. “I’m sorry I didn’t get the win, I did my best but it wasn’t enough. Sunny Edwards is a great champion and a talented boxer.
“He’s smart and fast, but next time I will come back stronger. I promise you all I will go back to the Philippines and train hard for the next opportunity.”