Donaire open to Inoue REMATCH if offered
By Chris Williams: Following his close loss to IBF bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (19-0, 16 KO) last Thursday, Nonito Donaire says he’s open to a rematch with him if he’s interested. Inoue’s victory over the former four division world champion Donaire (40-6, 26 KOs) was the biggest of his career.
It also proved to be the toughest fight for Naoya. He suffered a fractured right orbital bone, cut over his right eye and broken a nose. On the plus side, Inoue won the World Boxing Super Series tournament and took home the Ali Trophy.
Their fight is one of the best in 2019, and it saw both guys showing a lot of heart after getting hurt with big shots.
Inoue came out victorious in winning a 12 round unanimous decision by the score 116-111, 114-113 and 119-109.
Donaire ready to face Inoue in rematch
“If a rematch is on the table, let’s do it again,” said Donaire in talking about Inoue to the Philippine Star. “A lot of people are asking, ‘why not do a rematch?’ If it’s something the Inoue camp wants, it would be my honor to accept. I think it would be a heck of a fight the second time around,” said Donaire.
Inoue is going to be out of action for a while recovering from the injuries he suffered against Donaire. Despite the 26-year-old Inoue claiming that he won’t need surgery on his fractured right orbital bone, he’s not expected to be back inside the ring for six to eight months.
The eye injury isn’t one that Inoue can afford to take lightly, but he also has the cut over the same eye and the broken nose. Inoue’s cut only needed five stitches to close up, but all the injuries in total will keep him on the shelf for a while. Before the fight with Donaire, Inoue said he wanted to fight three times in 2020.
Given Inoue’s injuries, two fights might be pushing it. Don’t be surprised if Inoue only fights once in 2020, and that would likely be against WBC bantamweight champion Nordine Qubaali. Inoue wants to fight Ouabaali because he beat his brother, and also due to him having one of the titles at 118.
Inoue doesn’t punch as hard as Nicholas Walters – Donaire
“Nicholas [Walters] was a lot bigger than me, and we fought in the featherweight division,” said Donaire about the 5’7″ Walters. “You can’t compare the power of those two fighters. Inoue has good power, but I could take it.”
It’s fair comment for Donaire to say that Inoue doesn’t hit as hard a Nicholas Walters, who stopped him in six rounds in 2014. Walters was a guy that looked like a welterweight after he’d rehydrate for his featherweight matches.
You can’t compare a rehydrated 140-pound Walters (26-1, 21 KOs) with the much thinner and lighter Inoue. The thudding power from Walters was too much for Donaire when they fought five years ago. Inoue would have problems with a guy like Walters. Of course, Walters’ career appears to be over with, as he hasn’t fought since his 7th round stoppage loss to Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2016.
Donaire: Inoue wouldn’t engage as the fight wore on
“Right off the bat, Inoue tried to go after me, but then he felt my power. As the fight went on, he wouldn’t engage. I went toe-to-toe with Inoue, and for the most part, it was a stalemate,” said Donaire. “The body shot took a toll on me, and that’s why I wasn’t as aggressive in the last three rounds.
Inoue suffered his right eye injury in the 2nd round when was standing in front of Donaire, and trying to knock him out. Donaire hit Inoue with a left hook, which took well, but it damaged his eye. The way that Donaire was punching, Inoue wasn’t going to be able to take those shots for long if he didn’t get on his bike.
Ultimately, that’s what Inoue did. He did a lot of moving to keep from getting hit. Donaire was literally chasing Inoue around the ring the entire fight, throwing huge punches and just barely missing with them. When Donaire would catch Inoue with shots every now and then, the Japanese fighter looked uncomfortable and stressed.
Donaire was knocked down with a body shot in the 11th round by Inoue. He says it wasn’t a really hard shot. It just caught him after he’d exhaled, and he wasn’t ready to be hit at the moment.
Donaire EXPOSED Inoue’s weaknesses says Oubaali
“Nonito did very well and he exposed the weaknesses of Naoya,” said WBC bantamweight champion Nordine Ouabaali to Fightnews.com. “Nonito almost KOed Naoya at some point and I think the Nonito of a couple of years ago would have done the job. Naoya is a good fighter that deserves respect but that’s it; not more and not less. If and when I fight him, I will beat him,” said Oubaali.
Inoue has an excuse not to fight Donaire in a rematch. He can tell the boxing fans that he wants to avenge his brother Takuma Inoue’s loss to Qubaali. Oubaali beat Takuma by a 12 round decision. It was a good fight, but the victory was a clear one for Oubaali.
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