ARLINGTON: WBC champion Jose Ramirez saw an opening and quickly ended the world super lightweight unification bout against WBO champ Maurice Hooker.

Ramirez delivered a series of brutal punches, pinning hometown favourite against the ropes in the sixth round before referee Mark Nelson stepped in and stopped the scheduled 12-round bout.

“He didn’t know how hard I hit until the moment came,” Ramirez said.

Two lefts to the head knocked stunned hometown favorite Hooker into the ropes. The WBC champion from California then kept punching until Nelson ended the fight.

“It was a good stoppage. I was hurt,” Hooker said. “I will be back. This isn’t the end for me.”

Hooker said he lost his focus for just a split second, and the fight was over before he could recover.

It was the third title defence for Ramirez, the 2012 Olympian who improved to 25-0 as a pro with his 17th knockout. His first two title defences came at home in California.

“I came here with one mission, just to do my fight,” Ramirez said. “Going back to my rhythm and nice jab, everything I did when I was an amateur.”

Published in Dawn, July 29th, 2019