Nietes, Palicte fight to split draw in title bout

Donnie Nietes, left, and Ashton Palicte connect shot at each other during an exchange. HBO
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Donnie Nietes failed in his first try to become a four-division world champion after his match against Ashton Palicte for the vacant WBO super flyweight title at the Great Western Forum in Inglewood, California, USA on Sunday (Philippine Time) ended in a split draw.

In the second all-Filipino world boxing title fight of the year, Nietes seemed to have put on a clinic on Palicte through his veteran smarts, connecting primarily on counter-punches and openings against his younger and taller foe, especially in the latter rounds or right after Palicte got things going in the first four rounds.

However, only one judge found the match in Nietes' favor with a 118-110 scorecard.

Another judge actually had it 116-112 in favor of Palicte, while the third judge scored a 114-all draw.

With the belt remaining without an owner, it is highly possible that Nietes and Palicte will lock horns again in a rematch.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno