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Boxing News, August 3, 2007

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Super Castillo Schools Andrade
The Brilliant Little Man Keeps His Name in the Hat for a Big Fight



One of the fight game’s best technicians, super fly Martin Castillo, showed off his wares on Telefutura. It’s not often that boxing’s elite appear on this series, but when you weigh no more than a jockey, you do what you gotta do.

Castillo, now 32-2 (17), wasn’t able to put away rugged opponent Oscar Andrade. But he did thoroughly dominate the bout for the ten rounds it was scheduled for.

Scores of the UD were 98-92, 99-91 and 100-90. I had it as a shutout.

If you hadn’t ever seen Castillo before and didn’t know his reputation—he defended his WBA super fly title several times before losing it to Nobuo Nashiro this time last year—it still wouldn’t have taken you long to realize what a marvelous boxer he is. In the first round, he demonstrated a versatile left hand. He threw triple jabs, turned over left hooks to the body, and snapped back Oscar’s head with searing uppercuts. 

Along with his vast punch selection and fluid combos, I relish Castillo’s footwork, head movement and constant feints. While he doesn’t get hit too often, he can be touched, mainly because he’s willing to mix it up and give fans what they want.

In the third, that’s exactly what he began doing. He got in the trenches and sat down on his punches. He didn’t need to do this, as he was easily picking Andrade apart on the outside. But you suspect he’d get bored playing it safe. And at his weight, you literally can’t afford to be good—but boring—if you want to have a chance of making a name for yourself.

By the forth, it was clear that the only way Andrade—now 36-28-1 (18)—would have any chance is if he landed a big lucky shot, or if some other misfortune befell the former champ.

A cut opened up outside of Castillo’s right eye sometime in the fifth. The bleeding was manageable. But the way Anrdade attacked the wound with his head made for some scary moments. In the sixth, Martin grew weary of the billy-goating and responded with a hard low blow for which he received a warning.

The well-placed shot to the family jewels didn’t help Oscar’s cause. It slowed down the already plodding, out-skilled fighter. The seventh through the ninth were all Castillo’s.

For the final round, Castillo got up on his toes and stuck and moved. If not for the cut and so angry swelling, you’d think he’d just come out of the gate; his legs were as fresh as ever, his hands no less quick.

The only possible knock on Castillo is that he doesn’t possess a devastating punch. But, if anything, that lack of major pop is probably what allowed him to develop such superlative, well-rounded skills.   

There are many great match-ups to be made between 112-118. Nonito Donaire’s fantastic demolition of Vic Darchinyan (at 112) has me wondering how the Filipino would do with Castillo. And I wouldn’t mind seeing the Mexican with the exposed, but still explosive, Vic.  Christian Mijares is another fantastic boxer, who not long ago knocked Jorge Arce down a peg. Who wouldn’t mind seeing Castillo face either of those guys?

As the wee fellows south of featherweight have become so hot, the above is a mere sampling of the myriad match-ups any hardcore fan could come up with.

Undercard action: In an eight-rounder between over-the-limit jnr. feathers, Benjamin Flores, now 16-3 (4), won a close UD over Sal Garcia, who fell to 14-5-2 (7). All three scores were 77-75.





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