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Japan's Shinsuke Yamanaka defeated Malcolm Tunacao of the Philippines by technical knockout to defend his World Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight title on Monday.
Yamanaka, 30, floored the challenger twice in the third round with a straight left.
And it was the same straight left shot that knocked a bloodied Tunacao to the canvas one minute and 57 seconds into the 12th, for the referee to top the fight.
"I was ready to knock him out, but my opponent was also fighting pretty well. I went for it in the end. I got married and I have a child now, that made me stronger," said Yamanaka.
"A title unification match is always one of my targets, so I welcome any title matches against champions of the WBA, IBF or WBO. I'm not sure it was a nice fight today, but I'm determined to show an exciting fight next."
It was his third defence of the title he won in November 2011, improving his unbeaten record to 18 wins, including 13 KOs, and two draws.
Tunacao, the top-ranked challenger in the WBC, saw his record reduced to 32 wins, including 20 KOs, against three defeats and three draws.