Michael Conlan stops Diego Ruiz by ninth-round TKO

first_imgMichael Conlan put on a workman-like performance against Diego Ruiz to win the vacant WBO Inter-Continental and WBO Inter-Continental featherweight title at Falls Park in Belfast, Northern Ireland on Saturday night.Conlan unloaded on Ruiz and backed the Argentinian up against the ropes during the eighth, but it was in the ninth round where Conlan managed to land to the body and that was enough to make the 25-year-old take a knee. Conlan landed another body shot and Ruiz’s corner threw in the towel with 1:34 left in the round to give Conlan the ninth-round TKO. Conlan moved well and landed his jab, but nothing substantial. The fight almost sprang into action during the third when Ruiz (21-3, 10 KOs) pressed the issue and took the fight to Conlan, but was wild in his delivery. Conlan landed a low blow in the fourth and both men started to throw and land more as the round neared the end, with the pair exchanging words as the bell rang.As the bout entered the half-way stage, Conlan was well ahead on points and there wasn’t much action from Ruiz to change what looked to be a walk in the park for the 27-year-old Belfast boxer. A punch to the back of the head from Conlan in the sixth round infuriated Ruiz’s corner who were up on the ring apron complaining to the ref. That punch looked to ignite the fight, but the flames soon dampened down in the heavy rain and Conlan saw out the rest of the round and fight without an issue. Join DAZN and watch more than 100 fight nights a year“I’ve been under the lights since my debut, under the big performances and big atmospheres,” said Conlan (12-0, 7 KOs) in the ring following his victory. “I haven’t always lived up to the performances that are expected of me, but tonight I felt I did. It was unbelievable and thank you to everybody.”Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum added: “My goal is to get (Conlan) ready sometime next year to fight for a world title. I think Mick is still a work in progress, but he’s coming along fine and you’ll see by next year he can fight anybody in the featherweight division.”The fight started with a cagey opening round as both men took their time in looking for an opening with only a handful of punches thrown, but the 10,000 strong Northern Irish crowd were in a buoyant mood cheering on their local hero.last_img

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