By Joe Koizumi
Japan-based Venezuelan, unbeaten WBA super-feather champ Jorge Linares (27-0, 18 KOs), still twenty-three, displayed a very impressive eighth-round TKO victory over Josafat Perez (26-2, 20 KOs), a durable Mexican, on Saturday in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. Linares, already a two-class champ as ex-WBC 126-pound ruler, made his initial defense of his second world throne, which was shown on delayed basis through WOWOW cable TV here in Japan today (Monday). His stoppage of the game and tough Mexican warrior was well-received by all our aficionados. The champ’s post-fight comment in the Japanese language was as follows: “I deeply appreciate Japanese fight fans’ supports and also express my personal thanks to Teiken Gym’s staff and clubmates. I will diligently keep training to become stronger.” Linares seems humbler and more moderate than our younger generation. His personality as well as his still growing strength will make him more popular here in Japan.