San Antonio, Texas – Everybody agreed that it was a fight that would define the direction of Filipino welterweight prospect “Mighty” Mark Melligen’s career.A victory would have opened doors for the Filipino, including shots at former world champion Kermit Cintron or undefeated welter Mike Jones.
But reigning WBC Latino welterweight champion Sebastian Andres Lujan made sure that he would not become a stepping stone for the Filipino, dropping Melligen four times en route to a stunning 9th-round knockout victory. Lujan, who took the fight on a week’s notice, was filling in for Freddy Hernandez, who suffered an injury while in training.
Melligen owned the early rounds, connecting with jabs and uppercuts while maintaining his distance from Lujan. But the Argentine kept on pressing Melligen and in the sixth inning, Lujan’s pressure paid off. An overhand right landed on Melligen’s head, decking the Filipino for the first time.
The knockdown virtually changed the tide for Lujan as Melligen was visibly slower and was becoming more ineffective as the fight went on. Lujan would nail Melligen to the canvas on the 7th, 8th, and 9th rounds, all from overhand right shots.
“He probably was overconfident,” Lujan said after the fight. “I think my power may have surprised him.”
With the win, Lujan deserves the right to be pitted against the hot names of the welterweight division.
Melligen’s team will probably say that they will take a step back and map out their next moves. However, looking at the whole welterweight landscape and that talents that are brimming in the said division, it is hard to imagine how Melligen would fare against the top-tier competition in the house.
The loss to Lujan is considerably a huge deal for the Pinoy welterweight, who now needs to go back to the drawing board and reassess his career, with the promise of a huge fight taking the backseat. Albeit Lujan is no bum or fringe contender, a loss is still a loss. And if this was indeed a make-or-break fight for Melligen, it definitely broke him.
Lujan improves with a 38-5-2, 24 KOs slate while Melligen drops to 21-3, 13 KOs, with Melligen suffering his second loss by stoppage.
Photo credits: My San Antonio