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Selby Wins IBF Featherweight Crown

Lee Selby passed his graduation last night to become the IBF featherweight champion of the world stopping the champion Evgeny Gradovich in the eighth round in what was a scintillating contest.

Gradovich, unbeaten before this contest, was taken apart by the Welshman who gave the performance of a lifetime.

The first round saw Selby land some smart punches whilst the champion appeared to have come for a toe-to-toe fight. Selby probably just stole the opener.

Round two saw Selby keep his distance, picking off Gradovich at range, but a clash of heads saw Selby return to his corner with blood trickling from his nose.

Into the third round and Selby was still moving well to avoid the champions’ punches but also getting in some clubbing right hands of his own to stun the champion, once again the round belonged to the challenger.

The fourth round saw Selby continue to avoid the bombs being thrown by the champion, but doing enough himself to win the round. The action finished with Gradovich being warned by the referee for a punch to the back of the head.

The O2 Arena was, by now, cheering the Welshman on. Gradovich had some success catching Selby with a left that forced the Welshman onto the ropes with the champion continuing to work away at the body. The champion was forcing the pace but Selby was continuing to box beautifully.

The champions’ face was now showing the spoils of war, red and swollen but still unwilling to take a backward step. Late in the round Selby caught Gradovich with a hard shot and for the first time the Russian’s legs betrayed him.

Into the seventh and it looked as if the fight was Selby’s, Gradovich was again hurt, this time by a fine combination. A tussle between the two showed that Selby looked to be, now, the stronger man and the round ended with Selby catching the champion with a right to the forehead, but still the Russian survived. However the Russian returned to his corner with blood gushing out of a head wound.

Round eight started with the end clearly in sight, Selby unleashed a few more punches and with blood everywhere the referee asked for the ringside doctor to take a look at the damage. The doctor duly advised the referee to stop the fight and after the decision that the wound was caused by an accidental clash, we waited for the scorecards to be read out.

The O2 Arena rocked when the score cards were given as:

• 79-73
• 80-72
• 79-73

And the NEW IBF Featherweight champion of the world is Lee Selby.


The Journalist

Writer: Kid Glove Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday May 31 2015

Time: 10:37AM

 

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