WBO number one ranked super middleweight contender Jaime Munguia 43-0 (34) says he is ready to challenge undisputed 168-pound champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez 60-2-2 (39) following his ninth-round stoppage victory over John ‘The Gorilla’ Ryder 32-7 (18) at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona on Saturday night.
The 27-year-old Mexican, who previously held the WBO junior middleweight title and made five successful defences, looked strong against British southpaw Ryder, 35, bullying him around the ring and dropping him four times with his hurtful punches.
The first knockdown came in the second round courtesy of a right hand bomb and Ryder found himself on the canvas again in the fourth frame. Showing true grit and determination, Ryder willed his way back into the fight during the middle rounds but his success would not last for long.
Munguia increased the tempo as the rounds progressed and in the ninth round he buckled Ryder’s legs again with a right hand that sent him to the deck. A wobbly Ryder beat the count but Munguia swarmed him, knocking him down again.
Ryder, who had been stopped just once in six previous losses, once again beat the count but the writing was on the wall. As Munguia jumped on him and let his hands go, Ryder’s corner threw in the towel. The official time of the stoppage was 1:15.
Munguia was leading on all three judges’ scorecard at the time, 78-72, 80-70 and 78-72. The crowd was reported to be 10, 836 people.
It was a statement win for Munguia after Ryder went the distance with 33-year-old Mexican superstar Alvarez in his previous bout in May last year. Going into the bout Ryder was ranked number five by the esteemed Ring Magazine, while Munguia was ranked number nine.
“I’m really happy because I worked hard to get ready for this,” said Munguia, who was having his first bout under new coach Freddie Roach. “I know a lot of people didn’t believe in me and this is the result of hard work. We are ready for 168.
“You are correct. Last time, I was just throwing punches like crazy, but this time, my timing was better. My timing was perfect. Ryder is a great fighter and we are ready to keep on going.
“I’m motivated for the next fight and it’s going to be better than this one and it’s going to keep getting bigger. We want the best of the best in 168. We are going to be world champions.”
Alvarez has held the WBC, WBA, WBO and IBF super middleweight titles since November 2021 and is also the Ring Magazine champion. He typically fights twice a year in May and September and is yet to announce an opponent for his next bout.
Munguia says he would welcome the opportunity to match his skills against those of his countryman.
“It would be a great fight amongst Mexicans and if Canelo gives us the chance, it would be an honour to share the ring with him,” he said.