Nonito Donaire, Jr. (left) steps back after knocking Vic Darchinyan to the mat during round 9 of their featherweight rematch in Corpus Christi, Texas on Nov. 9. (AP photo/Eric Gay)
MANILA — Nonito Donaire, Jr. bucked a lackluster start, stopping Vic Darchinyan in the ninth round to get his career back on track in their featherweight fight at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas on Nov. 9.
Donaire decked Darchinyan with a booming left hook in the ninth canto then went for the kill with a few unanswered haymakers, forcing referee Laurence Cole to halt the bout.
The time of the stoppage was 2:08 of the ninth round.
“I tried to work hard in the gym everyday to get back. I just want to be better,” said Donaire, who appeared to be losing his grip on the fight as Darchinyan repeatedly pestered him with powerful blows throughout the 10-round bout.
The Armenian even forced Donaire into the corner at the closing seconds of the fifth round after he rocked him with a looping left hand.
Donaire himself admitted getting hurt in the fight.
“I felt like he broke my teeth. Part of me is asking if I should continue, but I just put my heart in it,” he said.
It was Donaire’s second victory over Darchinyan, who he knocked out cold in 2007 for the IBF flyweight title.
The Filipino-American lost his previous fight to Guillermo Rigondeux last September.
The victory over Darchinyan improved his record to 32-2, with 21 KOs.
Darchinyan fell to 39-6-1.