LAFAYETTE, LA — Eight years ago removed from his last Knockout of the Year against Fernando Montiel, Nonito Donaire likely punched his ticket to a second award with his chilling one-shot eraser against Stephon Young in the World Boxing Super Series semi-finals.
Young was a three-day replacement for WBO bantamweight title-holder Zolandi Tete, who pulled out due to a right shoulder injury. The once-beaten Young had never fought in this level but showed grit in bruising up Donaire with swift straight counters from the southpaw stance.
But Donaire, who towered over Young, never ceased walking him down. He wobbled Young with a straight right counter towards the end of the second and had Young bleeding profusely from the nose before the fateful sixth round.
Donaire countered Young’s left cross with a sweeping right hook to the body. The blow froze Young long enough for the Filipino Flash to torque his full body weight behind a left hook that landed flush on the jaw.
Donaire has been the Cinderella story of the World Boxing Super Series. He won a fourth round stoppage over previously undefeated Ryan Burnett after the latter suffered a back injury, and now stops Young following Tete’s injury withdrawal. Donaire will face the winner of the Naoya Inoue vs. Emmanuel Rodriguez (May 18) in the tournament finals.