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21 OCTOBER 2018

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Tso Endures Swelling to Decision Kono

Tso defeats Kono
Tso defeats Kono

By Derek Bonnett

In super flyweight at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, Rex Tso scored a career best victory earning a technical decision over former two-time world champion Kohei Kono.


Tso, 30, controlled the Japanese charger with a long stick on the outside. Kono pressured relentlessly, but his lack of accuracy preserved the unbeaten Chinese fighter’s gameplan. Tso worked the body of his opponent and was able to withstand some early connects of Kono’s left hook. A head clash in the second produced massive contusion on the forehead of Tso, the mass swelled in a manner reminiscent to Hasim Rahman against Evander Holyfield. Both fighters dug to the body on the inside. Kono’s big power shots did not connect and Tso was able to be effective with rangier shots. Tso’s right hand was strong in the third as Kono tried to crowd him on the inside. Kono’s best round probably came in the fourth as his pressure appeared to be paying off. The Japanese boxer pounded Tso’s body with great commitment.


Kono’s surge would not last though. Tso was able to adjust and he matched Kono’s earlier pace and met him on even terms in the pocket. When Kono would attack, Tso would tie him up to nullify the attack. Tso’s movement kept him in control and forced Kono to leap in with his shots to further diminish his accuracy. Kono still managed to land some thunderous right hands before the bell. Tso started the sixth with more movement to establish a nice stride. The doctor was called in to examine Tso’s growing contusion. The bout was allowed to go on, but ended between rounds.


The technical decision went to Tso, who remained unbeaten at 22-0-0 (13) in his native Hong Kong. Kono, 36, lost for the third time in four fights and fell to 33-11-1 (14). Tso will likely try for a world title next year.

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