Former world champion Victor Ortiz (32-6-2, 25 KOs) made his ring return in style with a fourth round stoppage of Saul Corral (23-10, 14 KOs) in their welterweight battle that headlined Premier Boxing Champions on FS1and FOX Deportes Sunday afternoon from Rabobank Theater in Bakersfield, California.
Fighting for the first time since April of last year, Ortiz was sharp from the start and attacked Corral with straight left hands and hooks. Corral was game and fired back uppercuts, but was too often on the short end of their exchanges.
“Corral is a great fighter who hits hard and I definitely felt it,” said Ortiz. “Top of the line boxers like myself, we hang in there and we perform to the best of our abilities. It was my first time back in a while and it’s just the beginning.”
Ortiz had success stalking Corral towards the ropes and unloading, focusing on delivering those powerful straight lefts and hooks. Corral tried to keep Ortiz at bay too often by holding onto his left arm, and after multiple warnings from referee Jack Reiss, he was deducted a point in round three.
“There’s nothing easy about going up against a guy like Saul Corral,” said Ortiz. “We were better tonight. We worked hard and I’m thankful to my team for getting me ready.”
The southpaw Ortiz was again able to trap Corral against the ropes and midway through the fourth round he connected with the decisive left hand that sent Corral into a heap on the canvas. Corral was able to get to his feet and briefly continue, but Ortiz quickly pounced and forced the referee to stop the bout 1:26 into the round.
“There are a lot of names out there in the welterweight division,” said Ortiz. “At this point I’m going to let my team guide me, because I’ll always be ready for anybody.”
Here are photos from Ortiz’s victory: