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Pongsaklek's late rally not enough to defeat Naito

TOKYO -- Japan's Daisuke Naito retained his
WBC flyweight title with a draw against Thai Pongsaklek
Wongjongkam on Saturday.

Former champion Pongsaklek, who had knocked Naito out in a
record 34 seconds in the first of their three previous meetings,
did little until the last three rounds in Tokyo.

"I really wanted to win outright but I'll take it because I
kept the belt," Naito said. "It feels a lot better than
losing. I just want to enjoy this."

Naito won the title from Pongsaklek in a stunning points win
last July following two defeats at the hands of the hard-hitting
Thai.

Pongsaklek, a national hero in Thailand after successfully
defending the title 17 times before being ambushed by Naito, had
struggled to make the weight limit for the fight.

A hard right from Pongsaklek drew blood from Naito in the
sixth round, but Pongsaklek was warned for bundling the champion to
the canvas as the fight finally came to life in the ninth.