Evelin Bermudez (right) lands a hard overhand right on Tania Enriquez – Photo by Nelson Quispe/Boxeo de Primera
“The Little Princess” didn’t stay crownless for too long.
Recovering from the only loss in her career, Evelin “La Princesita” Bermudez reclaimed her IBF and WBO junior flyweight belts with a razor-thin decision win over Mexico’s Tania Enrique at the legendary Luna Park Stadium in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Bermudez, rated No. 3 at 108 pounds by The Ring, outfought and outhustled a more methodic Enriquez, who came into the bout unbeaten in 26 bouts and showed tremendous skilled but lacked the fire needed to wrestle the titles away in the new champ’s backyard.
Enriquez enjoyed a very solid early going and grabbed a few of the middle rounds as well, but the sloppier and overeager Bermudez managed to land the more telling punches in most of the other rounds to build up a narrow lead going into the home stretch.
With the fight on the line, Bermudez went all in and seemed on her way to a more solid win until she inexplicably gave away the last round, surrendering the initiative to Enriquez.
In the end, the scorecards read 97-93 (twice) and 96-94 for Bermudez, this last one in consonance with The Ring’s own scorecard.
“I had to win this one for my family,” said an ecstatic Bermudez, sister of former multiple division titlist Daniela, “and for all of those who said that I couldn’t follow my dream. Everyone should follow their dream.”
With the win, Bermudez improves to 18-1-1 with 6 knockouts and recovers the belts she lost in her previous fight against Costa Rica’s Yokasta Valle back in November, while Enriquez (sister of former flyweight titlist Kenia) returns to her native Tijuana after her first loss with a still very respectable record of 20-1 (9 KOs).
Earlier in the night, two-time Olympian Alberto Melian (11-2-1, 7 KOs) scored a hard-fought ninth-round stoppage over Colombia’s previously unbeaten Johan Segura (11-1, 8 KOs). With his usual problems in defense, Melian allowed Segura to build up his confidence round after round until Melian jumped back in the driver’s seat and took control of the bout with his superior body work. A well-placed liver shot sent Segura down midway through the ninth, and Melian saw blood in the water. A few hard body shots later, Segura crumbled in his own corner and the fight waved off.
A few hot prospects saw action too, and body shots were the weapons of choice for almost all of them to score their own wins.
Tobias Reyes (11-0, 10 KOs) remained unbeaten with a four-round stoppage of Venezuela´s Gilbert Gonzalez (18-4-1, 13 KOs) in a flyweight bout that came to an end with a vicious body attack by Reyes, who was having some difficulties trying to find his range against the crafty Gonzalez up to that moment.
Earlier, blue-chip prospect Junior Alanis (11-0, 3 KOs) with a demolition of battle-hardened Kevin Acevedo (23-5-3, 6 KOs). After two lackluster rounds, the pace picked up in the third round with both fighters opening up on each other until Alanis landed a looping right hand on Acevedo’s solar plexus that did most of the damage, capped by a left hand that landed hard on Acevedo’s temple that sent him down for good.
In a previous bout, Fabian Maidana (20-2, 15 KOs), brother of former champion Marcos, also stopped his foe with a punishing hook to the liver that sent him down to the canvas wincing in pain in the third episode, in another fight between local righty vs. foreign lefty (almost the entire undercard featured this rarity). Maidana was overcautious in the early going, but as soon as he let his hands go, Ecuador’s Edwin Bennett (15-4, 7 KOs) was in serious trouble. He collapsed to the canvas after turning his back on Maidana following his murderous punch to the mid-section, and referee Gerardo Poggi waved off the contest only a few seconds into the count.
Diego M. Morilla writes for The Ring since 2013. He has also written for HBO.com, ESPN.com and many other magazines, websites, newspapers and outlets since 1993. He is a full member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and an elector for the International Boxing Hall of Fame. He has won two first-place awards in the BWAA’s annual writing contest, and he is the moderator of The Ring’s Women’s Ratings Panel. He served as copy editor for the second era of The Ring en Español (2018-2020) and is currently a writer and editor for RingTV.com.