Filipino boxer Mark Magsayo vowed to bounce back stronger and better after Mexican Rey Vargas stripped him of his World Boxing Council featherweight title via split decision at the Alamodome, San Antonio on Sunday, July 10, (Philippine time).
Vargas, who overcame a knockdown, convinced two judges who scored 115-112 in his favor while the third just had Magsayo as 114-113 winner in the battle of the unbeaten.
The 27-year-old Magsayo took to his Facebook to express his gratitude to his team and his fans.
“Thank you to my team and all the fans that supported me. I am young and still have a lot to learn. Congratulations to Rey Vargas and his team. I will come back stronger and better. Will work on my mistakes. This is boxing. Thank you, everyone,” Magsayo, who hails from Bohol, said.
Two judges scored the bout 115-112 for 31-year-old Vargas while the third saw Magsayo a 114-113 winner in the showdown at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
Magsayo, who captured the title with a majority decision over American Gary Russel Jr. in January, earlier apologized to his fans for his stinging defeat, promising to work harder and come back stronger.
His record dropped to 24-1 while former WBC super bantamweight champion Vargas improved his clean record to 36-0.
Magsayo will come back stronger
Magsayo, on Vargas, said, “He’s the man of today. That’s all. I’ll come back stronger. I did my best. A little rest and I’ll train to fight again. I’ll correct my mistakes (in the) next fight.”
He put a straight right to the head of Vargas, handing the latter his fourth career knockdown but the Mexican managed to hold off the Filipino fighter late in the ninth to the 10th rounds.
The knockdown, which Vargas downplayed as “wasn’t that effective” somehow got into him but he kept his composure in controlling the entire fight.
However, Magsayo complained that the Mexican did too much running on the ring.
Magsayo fights hard
From the opening bell, both ring warriors exchanged flurries of punches that wore on every round. When the Filipino champion hit the Mexican challenger with a solid left hook in the fourth, he answered with a barrage of left jabs and a hard right.
In the fifth round, Vargas capitalized on his superior reach and jab to unleash body shots and uppercuts but Magsayo gave him a solid blow in the jaw with an inside right.
A clashing of heads incident in the seventh round cut Vargas above his left eye but he kept his agility on the ring as if the cut never happened.
With Magsayo’s loss, the Philippines is currently without a world champion. Hence, the Filipinos are rooting on Donnie Nietes who will fight against Kazuto Ioka for the WBO junior bantamweight title on Wednesday in Tokyo.
Meanwhile, former WBC super bantamweight champion Brandon Figueroa scored a sixth-round TKO victory over Carlos Castro in the featherweight title featured as the co-main event.