Vencer y Convencer IV at Grand Hotel Tijuana misses the mark

With the draw in the Jose Galvez Guzman bout and unexpected Emmanuel Robles upset, some people were questioning whether the Tijuana Boxing judges had lost their ability as decision makers. There was also much talk about a rematch involving the boxers involved.


 

The same way a boxer like Adrian Broner might be critiqued for using hyperbole, extravagant exaggeration, so must we hold our promoters accountable for their lackluster match-ups on fight night.

In Bout #1, it was 19-year-old super lightweight Francisco “Frankie” Cuadrado (3-0, 2 KOs) Global ID 802012 (r) from Tijuana by way of Venezuela facing Hector Aguilar (2-16, a victim of 15 knockouts) Global ID 701978 from Tijuana. After just two quick body shots, this fight was history.

Bout #2 showcased 19-year-old super lightweight Cesar “Bricks” Noriega (5-0, 3 KOs) Global ID 789146 from Tijuana taking on Marcos de la Torre (5-2) from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico (name not found in Box Rec) or perhaps it was 24-year-old Marc Torres (5-2, 2 KOs) Global ID 616732 from Mission, Texas. More research is needed.

In round one, after Noriega caught Marcos De la Torre with a solid left hook, a barrage of heavy blows followed and with this early stoppage, Cesar Noriega had himself his sixth victory without a defeat.

 

 

Bout #2 winner Cesar “Bricks” Noriega has his arm raised on high by referee Fernando Renteria after the destruction of his opponent Marcos de la Torre.

Some might say Bout #3 featuring Adrian Gutierrez (5-0) was over in the blink of an eye. Since Adrian Gutierrez’s original opponent had to withdraw from his fight due to an illness and a last-minute replacement had to be found, the substitute boxer, 24-year-old, super lightweight Ricardo Tellez Bernal Global ID 826720 from Tijuana (1-0) had to agree to fight at the higher weight and as a result, the bigger, stronger Gutierrez was able to stop Bernal after just 18 seconds into round one and move up to 6-0 with 4 KOs. In retrospect, we witnessed Bernal (regrettably) sacrificing his undefeated record.

Ricardo Bernal (l) appears to be despondent as he stares out into space. Venturing a guess, it’s likely he was asking himself, “What just happened? I must never have a repeat of this night.”

Before the outset of Bout #4, we see the boxers Miguel Angel “Taz Boy” Lopez (blue trunks) and his opponent Esteban “Chucky” Garcia (red) being introduced to the crowd.

Bout #4 had 32-year-old Miguel Angel “Taz Boy” Lopez (17-24-3, 12 KOs) from Guasave, Sinaloa, Mexico taking on the 28-year-old Esteban “Chucky” Garcia (7-0, 4 KOs) from Brawley, Calif. in a super welterweight matchup. With Garcia unable to get past round two, you’d have to classify this match as another one-sided “beatdown.”

At the conclusion of Bout 4, the victorious Esteban “Chucky” Garcia is shown awaiting the announcement of his victory with referee Fernando Renteria. Over in the blue corner, a dejected Miguel Angel “Taz Boy” Lopez is having his gloves removed after his loss.

(top photo) After her match with Aurora Bautista was stopped due to the unintentional headbutt, Brenda “La Bonita” Flores had her arm raised in victory and was awarded the TKO victory. (below) Flores was later interviewed by well-known sports journalist Pascual Campomanes. The reaction to her nasty cut was hardly what you’d expect.

Bout #5 was another bout filled with some confusion. It too required a last-minute replacement. On the original fight poster, they had Brenda Flores (18-2) fighting a gal by the name of Liz Gil (11-1) from Mexico City. Then, on Friday’s bout sheet, the boxer’s name was listed as Aurora Bautista which may have been unrecognizable for most since Bautista had recently married Jesus Reyes Chavez and now lives in Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico and not Chicago, Illinois. Without Aurora Bautista or Aurora Chavez, being listed in BoxRec, you had to figure the boxer facing the more experienced Brenda Flores was making her Pro Debut. Having a debutante face Flores, the 25-year-old light flyweight (12-4-1, 2 KOs) Global ID 629170 from Tijuana, B. C., Mexico seemed preposterous but it eventually came to be. This bout ended inexplicably in round two after veteran referee Juan Manuel Morales Lee stopped the bout after a steady stream of blood came streaming down the left side of Flores’ face from a gash alongside her left eyebrow likely caused by a headbutt. The announcement came swiftly that Flores had been declared the winner by TKO.

The referee for Bout #6, Fernando Renteria, had Emmanuel Robles (r) and Alfredo Noriega (l) come to the center of the ring to hear his final instructions.

According to the bout sheet, Bout #6, a six rounder, featured two southpaws, the 30-year-old Emmanuel “Renegade” Robles (19-3) Global ID 546268 from San Diego but now living in Tijuana facing Alfredo “Latigo” Noriega (7-1, 2 KOs) Global ID 709691 from Tijuana. The official record keeper Box Rec differed with their records and had Robles at (15-3-1, with 5 KOs) while his opponent, Noriega had a record of (5-1, 2 KOs). 

In rounds one and two, it appeared Robles had done just enough to win both rounds. Halfway through the third round, the match had become so close you needed a clicker to track the punch stats. Then, after repeated complaints from Noriega about Robles using his head, Noriega himself caused a nasty gash, alongside Robles’ left eyebrow. With the blood gushing out and additional well-placed punches, Noriega made it appear Robles was in big trouble.

For the majority of this bout, it appeared Emmanuel Robles (red gloves) was in the driver’s seat, controlling the movement and pressing the action. Then came that menacing cut. 

Between rounds, Alfredo Noriega received advice/encouragement from his confidant while Robles’ cutman did a remarkable job on the cut and not a drop of blood was seen the rest of the way. 

Before the start of the final round, both boxers covered with each other’s blood looked across at one another and glared into the eyes of their oh-so competitive opponent.

Their battle continued right up until the final bell and you could see this sense of urgency in the faces of both boxers. When the scores were finally announced the Noriega supporters were ecstatic while the Robles backers appeared to be completely baffled. One judge scored it a draw while the other two had Noriega winning. Yours truly had Robles winning four rounds to two. This was that one match that clearly lived up to the promoter’s aspirations.

Representing LATV, former boxing great Israel “El Magnifico” Velasquez was doing the color commentary and interviewed each of the winning boxers after that bout. (bottom, right) Immediately following the verdict, Emmanuel Robles was joined by his wife and dear friends.

Should this fight have been close? If you were a Las Vegas bookmaker and pre-fight you were asked to compare the combatants and establish odds, it’s for certain Robles would have been a prohibitive favorite. This top-ranked amateur, then highly touted Pro, should have finished the bout in under two rounds. Box Rec had Noriega listed at five wins with one loss against opponents with a combined record of 14 wins, 47 losses and 3 ties with his last fight on January 23, 2016, being a TKO loss to Jose Valdez Salgado who had a record of 3-12-2. However, on the bout sheet, the promoter had Noriega listed at 7-1 and Robles 19-3. Was a trap set for the unsuspecting Robles? Was he under the false impression that he wouldn’t have to train for this fight? Robles, who had this stellar career as an Amateur and then defeated Pros like Leon Spinks III (11-2, 6 KOs), Olympian Yordenis Ugas (15-1, 7 KOs) and Jonathan Chicas (13-1). Yordenis Ugas is the Cuban boxer best known for winning the lightweight gold at the 2005 World Amateur Boxing Championships, then the gold medal at the 2007 Pan American Games and finally the bronze in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Robles must have been out of the gym, injured or over-confident because Noriega was hanging right in there. One thing is for sure, you won’t be seeing Noriega accepting a rematch.

Bout #7 featured 25-year-old lightweight Carlos Marcelino Santiago (8-2, 4 KOs) Global ID 572150 from Temoaya, Mexico City, Mexico taking on 28-year-old, southpaw Marcos Forestal Global ID 708899 with a record of 7-0, 4 KOs.

In sports, it really helps to have a support team par excellence, just like this one. (l to r) coach Carlos Barragan Sr., Manager Christina Carrillo, boxer Marcos Forestal, head boxing coach Carlos Barragan Jr. and finally Cutman4Hire’s Juan Ramirez.

Forestal, who now trains at the House of Boxing in San Diego, is from Guantanamo, Cuba. While it appeared Santiago’s punches had some pop, it was Forestal’s punches, the majority counters, that were landing at an exceptionally high rate. As a result, Forestal won himself a no doubt unanimous decision.

Bout #8, the Jose “As Negro” Galvez (l) bout against Francisco “Aztec Boy” Pina (r) was an 8-rounder.

Bout #8, the 8-round Main Event between Francisco “Aztec Boy” Pina (Box Rec’s record-keeping had Pina at 14-13-5, 6 KOs, while the promoter’s statement just said 33 fights) Global ID 424279 from Ensenada, B. C., Mexico going up against Jose “As Negro” Galvez Guzman from Tijuana (20-2 on the bout sheet, 16-2-2, 10 KOs on BoxRec) Global ID 629075.

Both boxers quickly settled in for this grueling inside match.

Friday night’s boxing fans weren’t exactly jumping for joy when they heard the news that the final bout of the evening had also been declared a draw.

For whatever reason, the judges had a difficult time deciphering who was the winner while yours truly thought the matter was a slam dunk. SportofBoxing.com had Galvez winning and winning quite handily.

Friday evening’s “Draw” verdict in the Pina vs Galvez match was Pina’s sixth Draw. Pina, who was getting the worst of it throughout the fight, has this way of making his opponents look ineffective and lacking in the necessary firepower. Galvez just happened to be Pina’s latest burnt offering. At times, it appeared as though Pina had no interest in winning. He was only there to match his opponent’s output and possibly confuse the judges. And, with the show being titled, “To win and win Convincingly” – Pina’s approach was not exactly a sample of this pledge.

Two young fans who were part of the disgruntled group were certain that their Dad had won.

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