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Tapales named Ring Magazine PHL’s ‘Fighter of the Year’

By: Glendale G. Rosal - CDN Digital Correspondent | January 15,2024 - 07:32 PM


Marlon Tapales. | Sanman Boxing’s Facebook photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines— Former two-division world champion Marlon “Nightmare” Tapales was named “Fighter of the Year” by Ring Magazine Philippines.

The announcement was made earlier this month during Ring Magazine’s annual awards.

To recall, Tapales (37-4, 19KOs) had an outstanding year in 2023, securing a two-belt world champion status by dethroning Murodjon Akhmadaliev of Uzbekistan in April in San Antonio, Texas.

Tapales became the International Boxing Federation (IBF) world super bantamweight and World Boxing Association (WBA) super world super bantamweight champion after defeating Akhmadaliev by split decision.

This victory came six years after his initial world title win—the WBO world bantamweight strap in Thailand.

He then challenged Japanese boxing superstar Naoya “Monster” Inoue, the WBC and WBO world champion, for a chance to become the undisputed super bantamweight champion.

However, he lost to Inoue via a 10th-round knockout on December 26 in Tokyo, Japan.

Despite this, Inoue earned recognition from Ring Magazine as the best Filipino boxer for 2023.


The runners-up for Ring Magazine Philippines were Froilan Saludar (34-7-1, 24KOs) and Cebu-based Esneth Domingo (19-2, 11KOs).

Saludar’s stunning first-round knockout victory against Keita Kurihara in Tokyo last October was one of the top upsets of the year for a Filipino boxer.

He secured the OPBF bantamweight title and is set for a rematch against Kurihara on January 26th at the NUstar Resort and Casino in Cebu in the co-main event of “Kumbati 16” by Omega Sports Promotions.

Meanwhile, Domingo earned his runner-up position after a nail-biting showdown against Michael Bravo, winning the WBO Global flyweight title on December 18th in Paranaque City.

Domingo of Cebu-based ZIP Sanman Boxing bucked a round two knockdown to defeat Bravo in a sensational 11th round TKO to win the title.


Despite bravado, Tapales faces ‘monster’ odds vs Inoue

Tapales remains a top 5 world title contender

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TAGS: Marlon “Nightmare” Tapales, Naoya "Monster" Inoue, NUSTAR Resort and Casino

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