Bloody Vargas Wins Rough Affair Vs. Manzanilla

By Justin Hackman


Rey Vargas UD12 Franklin Manzanilla: In Indio, California, WBC 122-pound champion Rey Vargas returned from nine months of inactivity to win a tough fight against Franklin Manzanilla (18-5, 17 KOs) of Venezuala.  Manzanilla came out of the gate with a rough-and-tough style that seemed to rattle the emotional cage of Vargas who looked out of rhythm early on.  In a moment of ill-advised aggression, Vargas hit the deck hard from Manzanilla's clean counter left hook.  On shaky legs, Vargas beat the count and survived the round.  Unable to capitalize on his momentum, Manzanilla continued to fight rough but could not land anything significant.  It was Vargas who owned the next key moment in this fight which came at the end of round four, when he measured the shorter Manzanilla for a sharp lead right hand followed by a left hook.  Manzanilla was staggered but recovered quickly.  The seventh round saw Manzanilla’s reckless aggression resulting in not only a headbutt that left Vargas’ face bloodied, but also a point deduction for Manzanilla for subsequently hitting on the break.  Fortunately, the cut was in a relatively favorable place to the side of the eye of Vargas, not over it, keeping his vision intact.  “Sloppy” doesn’t do a justice to the style of Manzanilla who fought blatantly dirty: shots to the back of the head, low blows, holding and hitting, headbutts, etc.  All of this led to his second point deduction just minutes later.  Credit Vargas who overcame the frustration caused by three cuts now on both sides of his face, all a result of illegal contact.  Down the stretch, the words “Stop,  break!” were heard from referee Raul Caiz more often than the thudding sound of gloves on face.  At the end of twelve rounds, all three official were 117-108 for Rey Vargas who improves his record to 33-0 with 22 KOs and retains his WBC title. source: dazn