1979-03-10 Carlos Zarate w co 3 (15) John Mensah Kpalongo, Inglewood Forum, Los Angeles, California, USA - WBC

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1979-03-10 Carlos Zarate w co 3 (15) John Mensah Kpalongo, Inglewood Forum, Los Angeles, California, USA - WBC. Referee: Terry Smith. Again having trouble making the weight, Zarate (118) was soon firing in heavy punches, mainly to the body, from both hands. In the third round, Kpalongo (116¼), showing his distress from the body punches, was caught heavily by a left-right-left combination before dropping on to his hands and knees where he was counted out with just three seconds of the session left.

Zarate’s stablemate, Lupe Pintor, who was the number-one contender, would be his next challenger. Carrying a solid punch in either hand, Pintor had defeated Willie Jensen, Orlando Amores, Richard Rozelle and Livio Nolasco on his way to 38 (32 inside the distance) wins in 42 bouts. Although the underdog, Pintor had sparred many rounds with Zarate and was quietly confident.