Yesica Nery Plata defeated Kim Clavel in a 10-round war tonight from Laval, Quebec, winning by unanimous decision to unify the WBA and WBC junior flyweight (108 lbs) titles. Judges scored the fight 96-94, 97-93, and 97-93. Bad Left Hook had the fight 96-94 for Nery Plata on our unofficial card. Nery Plata (29-2, 3 KO) came in as a pretty heavy underdog, likely owing mostly to the fact that Clavel (16-1, 3 KO) was unbeaten and had home field advantage in Quebec. But it was clear early that this was going to be no easy night for Clavel, which anyone who knew both fighters probably suspected would be the case. Nery Plata, who came in with the WBA belt, did the more obvious damage in the bout, bloodying Clavel’s nose and landing the cleaner, harder shots much of the time. But Clavel, who seemed to likely get down in the first four or even five rounds, stood her ground and fought her guts out, making this a possible toss-up, and putting that home advantage on the spot.
But the judges came back with not even just the right cards — this arguably could have gone Clavel’s way, or been a draw — but with cards that reflected the fight. It wasn’t just the right scoring, it was good scoring.There is already chatter about a rematch, simply because this fight delivered in the ring. This is an early shortlist candidate for Women’s Fight of the Year at the very least; if you compare it to recent years, there aren’t many fights that are this competitive and this hard-fought, so there’s no reason to think this won’t be brought up again in December.
- Mazlum Akdeniz UD-10 Cristian Bielma: A solid performance for Akdeniz (18-0, 8 KO), a 25-year-old who has a regional belt with the WBC that helps him out with rankings and whatnot. He looked decent here, I don’t think we saw someone who has serious world level threat in his game, but he’s sound, has some hand speed, moves pretty well, can fight well on the front foot and catch aggressive opponents with counters. Bielma (19-5-2, 7 KO) gave this an honest effort early, but he was officially dropped three times and was gassed to hell by the seventh or so, really, and had nothing much coming back past the midway point.
- Marie-Pier Houle UD-8 Marisol Moreno: Our first truly disgraceful scoring of 2023! Scores were 77-75, 79-73, and 80-72. The first card is badly pushing it. The latter two cards are absolutely disgusting, Moreno may as well not have bothered showing up, let alone bothered trying. Which she did, and she deserved the win in this fight. Pathetic home cooking. Shameful. Boxing being the way it is. Houle is now 8-0-1 (2 KO), and shouldn’t be, and Moreno falls to (6-4, 0 KO), and shouldn’t have. What makes this all even more obnoxious than it already is is the fact that this was the first watchable fight of the night, and both of them fought hard. Marisol picked up a clear early lead — you know, in the real world, not in boxing judge world — and Houle fought her heart out to get back into it as best she could. The eighth round was really fun, they both left it in the ring. To give credit to the TV commentary, they made no excuses and exhibited no bias during or after the fight.
- Derek Pomerlau UD-6 Gustavo Magana Rodriguez: Middleweight Pomerlau, 22, goes to 4-0 (2 KO) with a routine win, taking all three cards 60-54. Commentary thought he looked a little off his game, and maybe, but he didn’t come close to losing a round, either.
- Caroline Veyre UD-6 Estefania Franco: Scores were 60-54 from all three judges. Veyre, now 2-0 (0 KO), fought at the Tokyo Olympics, losing in the quarterfinals. She’s 34 now; in theory, she should be able to get into contention quickly, but she doesn’t look to have the high-level skills of a Skye Nicolson, and Veyre is seven years older.
- Eric Basran UD-6 Juan Carlos Garcia: Judges had it 60-53, 60-54, 60-54. There was no reason for anyone to give Basran a 10-8 in any of these rounds. Basran, 24, is now 3-0 (1 KO). Does not appear to have world level upside.