Alberto Machado stops Jezreel Corrales in eight to win WBA 130-pound championship
Published: October 22, 2017
VERONA, NY – At the Turning Stone Resort & Casino the 130-pound division has welcomed a brought a new entrant in its elite ranks. Puerto Rico’s Alberto Machado (19-0, 16 KOs) scored an eighth-round knockout over Panama’s Jezreel Corrales (22-2, 8 KOs) to win the WBA super featherweight (130) championship. Corrales lost the WBA title on the scales when he failed to make the 130-pound weight limit.
The bout started off in favor of the Panamanian as Corrales was able to land hard left hands on Machado. In the fifth round, Corrales landed a left hand that sent Machado to the canvas. Afterward, the momentum of the bout shifted in favor of the Puerto Rican as Machado worked more behind his jab allowing him to land his right hook. In the sixth round, Machado hurt Corrales with a right hook as Corrales jumped on the inside. The seventh round saw Machado once again land a right hook on the inside that put Corrales’ glove on the canvas. Unfortunately for Machado the referee did not see the punch and did not score a knockdown in his favor. The end came in the eighth round when both men exchanged left hands that landed. The Puerto Ricans landed harder. Corrales was on the canvas, and the referee waved the bout off when the Panamanian got to his feet at the count of ten.
The victory for Machado was more than just winning a title but a way to uplift his fallen island of Puerto Rico that has fallen on hard times since being hit by Hurricane Maria last month. Machado is now only the third active Puerto Rican world champion in the sport. He joins Miguel Cotto and Amanda Serrano as the only world champions from the island. There are many options available for Machado at 130-pounds including the winner of the upcoming Miguel Berchelt-Orlando Salido bout for the WBC 130-pound championship.
The main supporting bout of the telecast featured former 154-pound champion Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade (25-0, 16 KOs) making his move to the middleweight division. The Providence, Rhode Island native faced off against the then-undefeated Alantez Fox (23-1-1, 11 KOs) from Maryland. From the beginning, Andrade was able to showcase his toolbox of skills by outboxing the younger Fox from the outside landing counter left hands and right jabs all night. The gap in experience was apparent from the onset of the bout as Andrade has a deep amateur resume with wins over Daniel Jacobs and Keith Thurman. Andrade won a wide unanimous decision with scores of 118-110, 118-109 and 116-111. He landed 132 out of 269 of his power punches at a 49 percent connect rate.
The victory for Andrade was not the statement he may have been looking for to announce his rival in the middleweight division. However, it was good enough to display that he would not be an easy night for anyone at middleweight. Andrade has been relatively inactive for the past few years having only fought once in 2014, 2015 and 2016. In 2017, he has now fought twice winning two decisions. With names like Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin in the middleweight division, Andrade would like to stay active enough to keep his name in the mix. Moreover, one day become an opponent for any of the big names in the division.
Starting off the HBO telecast was a rebroadcast of a bantamweight (118) title unification bout that took place at The SSE Arena in Belfast, Ireland. IBF bantamweight champion Ryan Burnett (18-0, 9 KOs) took on WBA bantamweight champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov (27-2, 18 KOs). The bout was tightly contested in each round with both men landing their fair share of shots in a fight that was essentially fought in a phone booth.
Zhakiyanov’s trainer is former two-division champion and one of the U.K.’s most famous fighters in Ricky “Hitman” Hatton. The Kazakhstani fighter did his trainer proud by continuously coming forward applying pressure the entire fight. In the end, Burnett was able to land the cleaner punches throughout the bout to earn a unanimous decision victory to become the unified WBA and IBF bantamweight champion. The judge’s scorecards were 118-110, 119-109 and 116-112 in Burnett's favor. Burnett landed 194 out of 566 total punches at a 34 percent connect rate. Zhakiyanov landed 124 out of 491 total punches at a 25 percent connect rate.
(Feature Photo: HBO Boxing)