Boxer Moruti Mthalane retains flyweight title in Yokohama

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South African boxing sensation, Moruti Mthalane, has retained his flyweight title of the International Boxing Federation in Yokohama, Japan. The 37-year-old Mthalane beat Akira Yaegashi of Japan by technical knock-out in the ninth round in Yokohama.

Referee Mario Gonzalez was forced to stop the fight after Mthalane started punishing his Japanese opponent.

Akira Yaegashi, who is a year younger than Mthalane, is a former three weight world champion and previously held the light flyweight and super flyweight titles.

Yaegashi came into the fight with an impressive record of 27 wins in 34 fights, 15 of those fights were won by knock-out.

But the South African proved to be unstoppable in the ring and recorded a 39th win in 41 professional fights. He did it in style in nine rounds, this time in the Yokohama Arena in Yaegashi’s hometown.

Yaegashi’s last appearance on the title stage ended in disaster. He suffered a shocking first round knock-out to Milan Melindo in May 2017 to end his junior flyweight title reign in Tokyo.

The local hero put his best foot forward in the early stages of the fight, but Mthalane took control during the second half of the fight and the veteran road warrior hurt his opponent in round eight. It was in round nine when referee Mario Gonzalez jumped in to rescue the former multi-division champ after a brutal two round stretch which saw Mthalane land 53 power punches.

Mthalane has now registered 39 wins in forty one professional fights with twenty six knockouts in the process. Each of his four title fights in his current reign have taken place on the road, including his second straight one in Japan after beating Masayuki Kuroda on points in Tokyo in May 2019.