Dominant Marquez takes title as Rios struggles
Juan Manuel Marquez is the WBO interim 140lb champion after a unanimous decision victory over Sergey Fedchenko on Saturday, and his next rival is unlikely to be Brandon Rios after the Top Rank fighter edged to a lacklustre split-decision over Richard Abril.
Marquez's win was not easy on the eye in Mexico City, with Fedchenko hardly the ideal opponent on a stylistic level. Staying out of range and throwing little, Fedchenko made it difficult for his opponent to impress, although the 118-110 118-110 119-109 decision was never in doubt.
Fuelled by hope of a fourth bout with Manny Pacquiao, after a controversial November loss, Marquez brought his trademark hooks to the body against Fedchenko, clearly chalking up the rounds. Fedchenko absorbed increased punishment in the closing stanzas, but he did at least see his way to the decision in what was a one-sided affair.
Rios was far less controlled against Abril, taking a razor-thin decision after initially failing to make weight. In the end the judges rendered a 116-112 111-117 115-113 conclusion in Rios' favour, but it was a night that did little to further his reputation.
Many of the fans in attendance actually thought Abril had done enough after he controlled several rounds with his accuracy and management of the tight exchanges, leaving the eye of Rios to become swollen. However, Rios became more aggressive to force his way through his rival's defences, snatching the decision but few admirers after a wooden performance.