15 December 2012, 23:59:00
The Filipino Flash, Nonito Donaire, is without question one of the most thrilling pound-for-pound contenders out there right now. Roared on by a 7,000+ crowd at the Toyota Center, Houston, Donaire exacted revenge for the Philippines over Mexico following national hero Manny Pacquiao's KO defeat against Juan Manuel Marquez last weekend.
In what was American commentator Larry Merchant's final ever bout after 35 years calling fights from ringside, Donaire rose to the occasion with a blistering third round KO.
Arce, 33, had promised his children that he would retire should he lose, and the emphatic nature of the defeat makes it almost certain that he will stay true to his word. The Mexican's first journey to the canvas came after a stinging right-left combination near the end of the second.
The lightning quick Donaire ended the contest in the following round, with 2.59 on the clock. The Filipino, ranked sixth in Ring Magazine's pound-for-pound ratings, used his post-fight interview to pay tribute to his vanquished opponent, and call out Abner Mares and Guillermo Rigondeaux.
Nonito Donaire's fourth and final World title fight in 2012 sees him line up another difficult challenge in the experienced former World champion Jorge Arce.
Donaire, 30, won the WBO World Super-Bantamweight crown from Wilfredo Vazquez Junior in February, before making successful defences against Jeffrey Mathebula and Toshiaki Nishioka.
Now the Filipino Flash is eyeing up a hattrick of World title defences, and has the 33-year-old Mexican Jorge Arce in his sights.
For Arce, this bout presents a chance to reclaim the WBO title he previously vacated. Arce is 61 - 6 - 2, and, between interim and full belts, has held seven titles across five divisions. The Mexican is undoubtedly an entertaining fighter, and a challenge against Nonito Donaire is bound to be a thriller.