The world title drought continues for the Philippines.
Donnie Nietes could not cop the World Boxing Organization World Super Flyweight title, suffering a unanimous decision (118-110, 120-108, 117-111) defeat at the hands of Kazuto Ioka, Wednesday night at Ota-City General Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan.
It was a different outcome from their 2018 match as Ioka was able to weather each shot the 40-year-old Nietes gave.
Ioka was in the driver’s seat at the start of the match, controlling the fight with his volume punches.
The Japanese showcased the perfect balance of hand speed and discipline all throughout the bout picking his fights carefully to deny Nietes the momentum.
Round 10 was a crucial one after a huge cut opened above Nietes’ left eye.
The cut turned out to be pivotal for the Filipino ringster as it was a huge hindrance to his vision causing him to struggle even more in the final two rounds.
This is Ioka’s fifth straight title defense victory, going up to 29-2 with 15 knockouts.
For Nietes, this is the second loss in his career and the first since his split decision loss against Angky Angkota back in 2004 at RCTI Studios in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The four-division world champion dropped to a 43-2 win-loss record with 23 knockouts.