MARK Bernaldez suffered yet another defeat in American soil after a third round stoppage by unbeaten hard-hitter Andres Cortes on Nov. 6, 2021 (PH time) at the Virgin Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Bernaldez was on point with his punches and consistently landed his overhand right on Cortes’ head. He also was very accurate with his counter punches that at times stunned Cortes.
However, in the third round Cortes found his mark and landed an overhand right that backed Bernaldez. Cortes pinned Bernaldez to the ropes and unleashed a barrage of punches. Referee Allen Huggins quickly intervened and stopped the fight at the 2:12 mark in what looked like a premature stoppage.
“I think the stoppage was too early. Mark was in his senses and covering up. (It was) Too early, but what can we do? I told Mark to keep his head up and come back stronger,” Sanman Promotions chief executive officer JC Manangquil told SunStar Cebu.
This was Bernaldez’s third significant fight in the United States, a fight that could have paved the way for bigger opportunities for him. He lost both his previous fights against world-rated Albert Bell and Andy Vences.
“(It’s) Back to the drawing board. He wasn’t hurt or anything and the fight was close. Before the stoppage, he was competing (in the fight),” said Manangquil.
The 27-year-old Bernaldez is now 5-3 since he started his campaign in the U.S. in 2019. The former ALA Boy dropped to 23-5 with 17 knockouts.
Cortes, a fighter being groomed by Top Rank to be a future star, remained unbeaten with 16-0 with nine knockouts.