After nearly two years of inactivity, former WBA super bantamweight champion Jackie Nava (29-4-3, 13 KO’s) made a dramatic return to the ring Saturday night, stopping Alys Sanchez (12-2-1, 4 KO’s) in the seventh round at Auditorio Municipal in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico.
It was a close scrap early on, with Nava tasting the canvas towards the end of the opening frame. After a close second round though, the former world champ took total control of the bout, dropping Sanchez hard on two occasions in the fourth round and stunning her again in the fifth. Nearing the midpoint of the seventh round, a right hand dropped Sanchez for the third time prompting referee Romina Arroyo to wave off the action, awarding Nava her first knockout victory since she last fought in 2012.
The win also gives Nava the interim WBA super bantamweight title. The newly crowned title holder has had a long history as a super bantamweight champion in her career. As the Mexican champion, she won the WBA bantamweight title in 2005 and moved up in weight later that year to grab the WBC super-bantamweight belt. She lost the title in 2006 but became the interim belt holder in 2007 and made six successful defenses, losing to Marcela Acuna in 2009 in a bid for the full title and then again to Ana Maria Torres in 2011 for the vacant WBC Diamond bantamweight belt. She eventually won the WBA super bantamweight championship in 2012 and defended the title twice before her hiatus.
To Sanchez’s credit, she did her best throughout the contest to swing the fight back in her favor, but the lateral movement and stiff jab that got her through the first two rounds just weren’t doing the trick as the fight moved along. This was her second consecutive loss after being unbeaten in her first 13 outings and winning the interim WBA title in 2012.
In Wakayama, Japan, WBC flyweight champion Shindo Go (14-2, 9 KO’s) made a successful defense of the title with an eighth round stoppage of Kledpetch Lookmuangkan (6-3, 1 KO). Go had lost a close decision to Mariana Juarez in her first try at the title in 2012 but won the belt the following year with a decision over Renata Szebeledi. This was her second title defense. Lookmuangkan lost in her try at the IFBA super flyweight title last year and has now lost three of her last four contests.
Nikki Adler (12-0, 7 KO’s) remained undefeated and retained her three world titles; WIBA, WBC and WBU super middleweight when her opponent Gifty Ankrah (3-4-1, 2 KO’s) retired after the eighth round due to an injury. Adler won the three titles over the course of her three prior contests dating back to January of 2013. Ankrah had only fought one time since February of 2011; a second round stoppage win almost a year and a half ago.
Also on the card, WBF Intercontinental lightweight champion Natalia Smirnova (8-0, 5 KO’s) won the vacant WIBA International and vacant UBO super featherweight titles with a first round TKO of Yarker Annan (7-7-1, 3 KO’s). Annans seven losses have come in her last seven bouts.
Former world super flyweight champion Simona Galassi (20-3-1, 4 KO’s) retained the EBU flyweight title with a fifth round technical decision over Galina Ivanova (14-10-3, 2 KO’s) in Italy. Galassi also had a stretch as the WBC flyweight champion from 2008 to 2011 before moving up in weight after a loss to Mariana Juarez. Last December she lost to Susi Kentikian in a bid for the WBA flyweight title. Ivanova has had a few brief runs as world title holder; in 2003 she held the WIBF super flyweight belt and in 2008 she won the GBU and WBA bantamweight titles. The following year she added the WIBF and WBC bantamweight belts. None of her world title reigns have lasted past their first defense.
WIBA minimum-weight champion Gretchen Abaniel (15-5, 6 KO’s) scored a fifth round stoppage over Buangern OnesongchaiGym (10-6-1, 1 KO) in a non-title contest in Sydney, Australia.