Wednesday, September 27, 2023  |



Luis Nery stopped Froilan Saludar in the second round in Mexico

Luis Nery.
Fighters Network

Luis Nery made quick work of Froilan Saludar Saturday night, dropping him three times en route to a second round knockout win at the Recinto Ferial in Metepec, Mexico.

Nery, who is ranked No. 4 by The Ring at 122 pounds, improved to 35-1, 27 knockouts.

Saturday was a stay-busy fight for Nery, who had to deal with a small cut above his eye from an accidental clash of heads with Saludar during the early stages of the opening round. Both fighters continued to fight aggressively, on their front foot, but it was Nery’s punches that had the greater impact.

In the second round, a combination culminating with a series of left hands dropped Saludar. He managed to beat the count, but was dropped again moments later with a barrage of punches. To his credit, Saludar fought back, but Nery was intent on ending matters. Later in the round, as Saludar was backed into a corner, Nery caught him clean with a punch to the head, dropping him a third time to the canvas and prompting an immediate stoppage from referee Rafael Saldana at 1:43.

“I am happy with this type of result,” said Nery after the fight. “I knew that Saludar did not have what it took to defeat me. He came to fight and that is good, but (I) was ready to exchange with him.”

The southpaw Nery faced Azat Hovahannisyan in his previous fight on February 18, in what turned out to be an all-out war that became a candidate for Fight of the Year. Nery would outlast Hovhannisyan, winning by knockout in the 11th round.

After the win over Hovhannisyan, Nery was hopeful a fight against Inoue would be in play for later this year in Japan. That would depend on what the WBC decides, including a world title elimination bout between unbeaten Alan Picasso and South Africa’s Sabelo Ngebinyana on July 15 in Mexico City.

Nery has now won his last four bouts since losing to Brandon Figueroa in May 2021.

Saludar (33-6-1, 23 KOs), who resides in Polomolok in the Philippines, falls to 33-7-1, 23 KOs. The 34-year-old stopped journeyman Crison Omayao in a stay-busy fight on October 29. In recent months, Saludar lost by decision to Andrew Moloney and Daigo Higa.

The Nery-Saludar fight headlined a Zanfer Boxing card that streamed live on ESPN+ in the United States and on Azteca TV in Mexico.


Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected]