Las Vegas, United States, Aug 22 (EFE).- Cuban Yordenis Ugas gave his best version and achieved the great victory of his professional career by beating legendary Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao Saturday by unanimous decision to retain the World Boxing Association welterweight champion title.
The 12-round bout was an exhibition of Olympic bronze medalist Ugas, 35, who surpassed an ageing Pacquiao with his intelligent and technical boxing.
Judges, although they witnessed a great and close match, did a good job of giving Ugas the win, with the Cuban winning 115-113, 116-112 and 116-112, respectively.
Ugas, with a perfect strategy, patiently wore out Pacquiao, denying the veteran boxer a triumphant victory before he ran for president of the Philippines, his country.
Pacquiao, 42, was looking for a great victory in the ring before running for his great political challenge, but could not achieve it because he faced a rival who was superior, who understood boxing better and with greater youth and physical power.
Pacquiao himself at the end of the fight held at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas said he did not adapt early enough in a fight that in the end was always under the control of Ugas, who is now 27-4.
Although he knew he had to face Pacquiao with only 11 days’ notice, Ugas presented a perfect strategy and gave an entire technical boxing exhibition.
Ugas, as he had stated, seized his opportunity as the late replacement for American Errol Spence Jr. through injury, frustrating Pacquiao (67-8-2) in what could be the final fight of the Philippine senator’s career.
The veteran Cuban fighter threw far fewer punches than Pacquiao, but they were more precise and effective.
Pacquiao struggled to get into Ugas’ effective hits, while the Cuban fighter connected with his right hand to increase the effect in later rounds.
After an unimpressive performance on his return from the longest break of his quarter century in professional boxing, Pacquiao said he has not decided whether he will fight again.
He also did not want to confirm whether he will participate in the Philippine presidential race, as is widely expected. He intends to make an announcement next month.
The victory was the culmination of a long journey for Ugas, who defected from Cuba two years after winning a bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics.
Ugas left boxing for two years in the middle of the last decade, but regained his career and took advantage of this unexpected stroke of luck against one of the greatest fighters of this era, obtaining his 12th victory in 13 fights.
“He is a great competitor, but I came here to show that I am the WBA champion,” Ugas said through a translator. “A lot of respect for him, but I won this fight.” EFE