Michael Conlan (17-1, 8 KOs) picked up a decision win on Saturday night at The SSE Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland, as he dominated Miguel Marriaga (30-6, 26 KOs) in a 10-round featherweight clash.
While Conlan controlled most of the action, Marriaga had his best moment in the final round when he nearly dropped Conlan, in a brief display of power.
Final scores were 99-88, 99-88, and 99-89.
“I had to get rid of a lot of demons tonight. Even in the fuc*ing last round, he hit me with a shot. That guy can punch. [He has] 10 more knockouts than I have fights. He hit me with a jab in the first round, and it was like, ‘Oh, this guy actually can bang.’ I had to be careful and use my skills, which I did. In the last round, he caught me with a shot. Listen, I’ve been using my legs all night. I was a bit off the pace. He was pushing it. He landed a good shot. He buckled me a little bit. I felt it, and for me, to kind of come through that and it’s the last round… I got knocked out in my last fight in the last round. I think that says a lot. I’m back, baby. I’m ready for any of them.
“Obviously, I want Leigh Wood. It’s obvious, but Leigh has his own situation. So, hopefully he can deal with that and come through and the rematch can be done. If not, it’s any other champion. I want to get back in. I will be world champion, and I know I will. Whoever I face, I know I’ll beat him.”