WBA light flyweight king Roman "Chocolaito" Gonzalez kept his title last night with a scintillating performance at Plaza de Toros in Cancun, Mexico.
The undefeated 24 year old from Managua, Nicaragua had already defended the WBA minimumweight strap three times prior to capturing the light fly crown in March of this year and was facing the first challenge of his 108 pound reign.
In the other corner at Plaza de Toros stood 31 year old Tijuana veteran Omar Salado, who had previously forced a draw against Ulises Solis for the IBF light fly belt in 2006 before dropping a WBC fly title eliminator to Julio Cesar Miranda two years later and then losing an Interim WBA flyweight title clash to Luis Concepcion in 2009, both inside the distance.
When the action began, Salado sought to hold of the incoming champion with the jab and the occasional right hand but Gonzalez was just too quick for the challenger.
Gonzalez aptly displayed he could land at will and soon Salado was decked from a looping lead left hook to the head.
The Mexican was immediately on his feet but faced a serious two handed barrage along the ropes that he had to fight his way through. As Salado tried to dance away from trouble, he was felled by a sharp right hand.
The brave but outgunned Salado again was up at once and managed to survive the round despite Gonzalez's best efforts to finish off his challenger.
The rest of the contest was a very one-sided affair with the much slower Salado doing his best to get in some offense in the face of the impressive arsenal coming his way from Gonzalez.
Salado was cut in the corner of the right eye in the fourth and was hindered over the next few rounds from a lack of vision but still managed to make it into the seventh where he was downed again.
Once again the challenger was on his feet but after a few seconds of Gonzalez's follow up assault, was retired by his corner, who threw in the towel at 0:48 of the frame.
Gonzalez sees his record to 29-0 (24) while Salado falls to 22-4-2 (13) having now lost three of his last four appearances.
There were big names on the undercard as Juan Manuel Marquez, 53-5-1 (39), prepared for his third clash with Manny Pacquiao coming up in November by belting out Colombian southpaw Likar Ramos, 24-4 (18), in the first round at light welter.
Juan Manuel's younger brother Rafael Marquez, 40-6 (36), made a return from his WBO featherweight title loss to Juan Manuel Lopez last year by retiring opponent Eduardo Becerril, 12-8-2 (4), at the end of the fifth round.