Cruz snatches WBA belt from Romero via TKO win

Isaac Cruz (left) dominates Roland Romero to win the WBA belt. (boxing247.com)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz is now the new World Boxing Association (WBA) junior welterweight champion of the world after clinching a technical knockout (TKO) win over belt-holder Roland Romero on March 31, 2024, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Prepared, crisp, and fought under a controlled tempo his camp wished him to execute, Cruz just schooled Romero and stopped him in the eighth round with still 2:04 remaining.

The match referee was near to stopping the fight in the seventh round after Romero received heavy punishment but the doctor allowed him to continue in the eighth.

Eager to finish the match on a high note and bag the WBA championship belt, Cruz just sent in a flurry of power punches that forced the referee to halt the fight.

It was all Cruz from the get-go as the Mexican slugger artist took the fight in close range which is his desired distance and pummeled Romero with several booming body punches.

Cruz didn’t settle when the second round began and stepped on the gas pedal after seeing Romero’s weak points. First, the former champion didn’t choose to stay away, instead, he fought toe-to-toe with the Mexican in a brutal manner within the close distance.

The result gave Cruz a commanding lead on the scorecards, leaving Romero in deep trouble as every round commenced.

The only shining moment for Romero was during the sixth when he was able to land two clean hooks that went straight to Cruz’s jaw but the “Pitbull” just shrugged it off and continued with his hounding pressure.

All hell then broke loose in the seventh round when Cruz turned into beast mode as he landed a series of vicious right uppercuts and hooks that put Romero in skates, going out-balanced every time he went back to the middle of the ring.

The highly-anticipated fight then officially ended in the eighth round, rewarding Cruz with his fourth straight victory while improving his professional boxing record to 26 wins, 18 knockouts, and two defeats.

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