LOS ANGELES, California – Brian "The Hawaiian Punch" Viloria is now the top flyweight boxer in the world after he defeated fellow champion Hernan "Tyson" Marquez of Mexico in an exciting fight at the Sports Arena in Los Angeles.
Viloria dropped Marquez towards the end of the first round and fought aggressively in the following rounds. Both fighters were knocked down in the fifth round, but Viloria registered a third knockdown in the tenth round.
After watching "Tyson" go down for the third time, his corner threw in the towel, giving Viloria a technical knockout victory.
"It's two champions. You're not fighting a guy who's in the top 10 – you're fighting a world champion," Viloria said. "To win the way I did tonight, it's more than I can imagine."
At times, Marquez had Viloria in trouble, only for the "Hawaiian Punch" to respond with the bigger punches.
"I played a little bit of rope-a-dope," Viloria said. "I was trying to be patient, I was trying to read Marquez a little bit, trying to make him come on."
"I knew if he came in the back, I could have caught him, because he was trying to back up a bit. I knew if he walks towards me, I would catch him," he added.
Viloria said the knockdown in the fifth round did not affect him, either.
"He buzzed me a little bit, but it wasn't to a point where I didn't know where I was," he said. "I'm in shape, so I composed myself real fast and when you’re in shape, you recover really quick."
Marquez now has three career losses, all of which came against Filipino opponents.
Adding fuel to the Filipino-Mexican rivalry was Drian “Gintong Kamao” Francisco.
In his United States debut, Francisco scored a fifth-round technical knockout victory against Mexican Javier Gallos.
"Masaya, kasi unang laban natin sa US ito," Francisco said after his victory. "Kung baga, ipinakita natin na iba ang lakas ng Pilipino, gaya din ng ginawa ni Brian."
Viloria said he is willing to fight anyone in his division, but is first looking forward to celebrating his 32nd birthday.