Naoya Inoue vs Marlon Tapales Match Results: ‘The Monster’ Claims Two-Weight Undisputed Crown
In a thrilling fight between Naoya Inoue and Marlon Tapales, ‘The Monster’ cemented his title as the undisputed two-weight king, organizing a superb performance resulting in a 10-round victory. Inoue won the IBF and WBA super bantamweight titles in this fight, adding to his current WBC and WBO titles.
Inoue won the undisputed bantamweight title by defeating Paul Butler just over a year ago, and he quickly moved on to dominate the 122-pound division.
Tapales recovered excellently from a fourth-round knockout, exhibiting more tenacity than American Stephen Fulton, who was knocked out in eight rounds by Inoue last July.
Though largely blocked by Tapales, a barrage of devastating right hands left him disoriented and unable to recover adequately, resulting in a one-minute and two-second halt at Tokyo’s Ariake Arena.
Inoue, a four-division champion, is only the second man in the four-belt era to achieve undisputed status, following Terence Crawford’s welterweight victory against Errol Spence earlier this year.
Tapales stated in the run-up to the fight that he intended to take Inoue into the deep seas. However, like Fulton, he discovered that Inoue’s physical prowess and power transferred quickly through the weight divisions, proving formidable.
Early on, the southpaw visitor struggled to position his lead foot outside Inoue’s, leaving him open to the favorite’s jolting backhand. Tapales’ tendency to lean in proved dangerous as Inoue delivered crisp hooks and uppercuts.
While the IBF and WBA rulers initially fought with championship ambition, a clear one-way traffic pattern emerged as Inoue’s movement and diverse punch selection proved mesmerizing. In the fourth round, a disoriented Tapales succumbed to Inoue’s assault but managed to survive until the bell, regaining composure in his corner.