Manny Pacquiao stopped Lucas Matthysse in the seventh round of their fight in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday morning to win the WBA (regular) welterweight belt.
It was the 39-year old’s first win by a stoppage in nine years in his first fight since his surprise defeat to Australia’s Jeff Horn in Brisbane just over a year ago.
The Filipino legend put on quite a show against his 35-year old Argentine opponent, knocking him down in the third and fifth rounds before finally finishing him off in the seventh.
Referee Kenny Bayless signalled an end to the fight 2:43 into the seventh round with Matthysse down on one knee.
It was Pacquiao’s 60th victory in his 69th fight (seven losses, two draws)
— WBA Boxing (@WBABoxing) July 15, 2018
On the undercard, Venezuela’s Carlos Canizales earned a late victory over China’s Lu Bin to retain his WBA Light Flyweight belt.
Bin, fighting in just his second professional fight, was outclassed by Canizales.
The Venezuelan was on top for most of the fight, but had to wait until the 11th round to demonstrate his superiority as he dropped Lu with a big right hand.
The challenger held on, but was stunned again in the final round, the referee stopping the fight with just a second left after landing another right hand.
Lu was then stretchered from the ring and taken to hospital.
In earlier action, South Africa’s Moruti Mthalene won the vacant IBF Flyweight title with a points victory over Pakistan’s Muhammed Waseem.
Mthalene, 35, used all his experience as he earned a 114-113, 114-113, 116-110 decision over Waseem.
The South African controlled the early rounds as the younger fighter took a while to get going, but he eventually upped his workrate to get back into the contest.
The previously undefeated Waseem then floored Mthalene in the 11th round with a left hand as he attempted to finish the fight, perhaps aware that he was behind on the scorecard.
Mthalene, however, weathered the storm and hit back in the final round as both fighters looked to end the bout with a knockout.