Sakata beats Vasquez to defend WBA flyweight crown

TOKYO -- Japan's Takefumi Sakata won a
unanimous verdict over Roberto Vasquez of Panama to
successfully defend his WBA flyweight title on Sunday.

Vasquez had held the crown on an interim basis after he
overcame Sakata on a split decision last December while then
champion Lorenzo Parra was injured.

Sakata then won the title from Venezuelan Parra in March,
prompting Sunday's unification bout in Tokyo.

"I didn't want to accept there being two champions at the
same weight," Sakata told reporters after improving his record
to 31 wins with four defeats and one draw.

"The first defense is supposed to be very difficult so it's
nice to have come through."

Vasquez slipped to 24 wins against two defeats.

"I felt very weak today," he said. "My head started hurting
from the fifth round. It's the first time I've experience
anything like that."