By Jose Reyes
Fightnews caught up with young undefeated super bantamweight prospect WBO#9 and WBA#12 Wilfredo Vasquez Jr (16-0-1, 13 KOs), after his impressive 2nd round TKO victory over four time world title challenger Cecilio “Boga” Santos (23-11-3, 13 KOs) this past Friday night in Kissimmee, Florida. Vasquez Jr, who captured the WBO Latino super bantamweight championship with the win, is the son of former super bantamweight champion Wilfredo Vasquez of Puerto Rico. The young boricua has shown great poise in his development towards a world title that emanates through great tradition and hereditary gene pull. Read on to learn what this up and coming prize fighter had to say…
What can you tell us about the result and your experience tonight?
Well, I had to take things with patience and be calm and listen to my corner because Cecilio Santos is a well experienced fighter. I knew that as the rounds continued, the possibilities of the fight becoming a long lasting fight would help Santos settle in on his timing, so I took advantage of the opportunities. As I always have said in the past, I work really hard and I came out hot and ready (for the fight) out of the dressing room. So I took control of the fight and as you saw for yourself I connected with a left hook to the liver and we finished the fight early. It was evident that Santos came in here to win and defeat me but…
In that first round, was it a study round for you? He did connect good punches on you in the first round.
Well, yes he did, it’s the experience that he brought to the ring that was to his advantage, but my advantage was my physical conditioning and ability.
Did he ever hurt you?
Well, I will tell you one thing: he had heavy hands. But did he hurt me? Or did I ever feel in trouble? No, I didn’t.
In the second round, you came out strong and connected, you cut him and changed the fight completely. You saw the momentum change, you saw the blood dripping from his cut and felt, ”OK here I go?”
Yes, I did sir. I saw his face and what he showed me was that I was hurting him. I am not saying that I saw fear but I saw that he was concerned because he noticed that I was being more aggressive and that I was not intimidated. I began to take the fight and make it mine, and then you saw the result.
You dropped him with a great “Gancho al Higado” left hook to the body. Did you think he would beat the count?
Look, I sincerely did think he would. Santos had fought three or four times for the world title, and to do that, he had to fight against many experienced fighters and fighters that would crack because of how hard it is to win a world title fight! My father has always told me that the left hook to the body, that is a very well executed and in the right location, with the exact technique is a mortal punch.
You are in the rankings and with this win you are climbing even more so. Who do you see fighting in the future?
I am in a process that whatever my father and my promoter say, I should do. I will fight anyone and I am ready to take on all comers. I am willing and able. Everyone in this division is a good fighter and like my father has said, no one here is an inferior opponent. There are many fighters out there that have the ability, but some train hard and some don’t. There are also some that have that desire to become a world champion, and I am one of them. I have that desire not just for the title, but to give my daughter and my wife everything I wish to give them.
The ovation by the fans when you came out was tremendous, what did you feel when you came out to that reception?
I am here today because of them, without them I would not be in the position that I am in today. I have said it before, the day Wilfredo Vasquez Jr doesn’t feel willing and able to give his fans the best, I will stop fighting. I come in here in excellent physical condition so they can go home after the fight very well satisfied from my fights. My work is real and it’s to become a world champion and if the opportunity presents itself so that I could choose where to fight, it would be here. I would like to tell all my fans who always have supported me and have seen me progress with every day and every fight that they motivate me and I would like to tell them that I don’t want to be seen as a star because stars are in the sky and that’s the glory of God and all I am trying to do is what everyone else is trying hard to do just like you, put bread on the table for my family and so that my baby never lacks anything. All I can tell you is that I work hard and the day that I get into that ring and someone comes in here to try to defeat me they will face the best prepared and well conditioned fighter in me. I will fight with great honor and dignity and give it my best.