Saturday night may have marked the end of the road for the Philippines’ most popular local box-office draw.
Former world title challenger Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista lost a split decision to Mexican journeyman Jose Ramirez in a twelve-round featherweight bout at the University of Southeastern Philippines Gymnasium in Davao City. Scores were 114-111 twice for Ramirez, with the third having it 114-111 for Bautista.
Veteran Philippine boxing reporter Abac Cordero reported that Bautista sustained serious cuts in the bout.
With the loss, the 26-year-old Bautista, of Bohol, Philippines, falls to 34-3 (25 knockouts), ending an eight-fight winning streak that followed his upset loss to Heriberto Ruiz in 2008. Bautista’s only other defeat came in his lone appearance on HBO Boxing After Dark in 2007, when he was knocked out in the first round by current featherweight titleholder Daniel Ponce De Leon.
Ramirez, 25, now stands at 25-3 (15 KOs) following the victory, which is his third straight. Two of Ramirez’s defeats were split-decisions to fighters with records of .500 winning percentage or less.
In the co-featured bout, THE RING’s no.9-rated flyweight contender, Rocky Fuentes (35-6-2, 20 KOs), of Cebu City, Philippines, completed yet another tune-up bout, this time winning a unanimous decision over Juan Kantun (20-4-3, 15 KOs) of Merida, Mexico. Scores were not available.
Also, junior bantamweight prospect Arthur Villanueva (21-0, 11 KOs), of Bacolod City, Philippines, won a wide unanimous decision over Marco Demecillo (18-1-1, 14 KOs), of Iligan City, Philippines, by the scores of 118-109 and 119-108 twice.
The card will air in the Philippines on a delayed basis this Sunday, April 21, at 10 a.m. on ABS-CBN, with a repeat at 4 p.m. on Studio 23.