Le Cannet, France - WBC #11 and IBF #15 super middleweight Kevin Lele Sadjo of France retained his EBU European 168lb title for the very first time by stopping German opponent Emre Cukur in the midst of the seventh round.
Powerfully built and very muscular Sadjo, 32 and nicknamed Phenom, immediately started putting pressure on Cukur, 29.
There were plenty of problems for Cukur, including both the Frenchman's power and punch output and his own negligible power (just 3 KOs in 19 wins coming into the fight). Cukur's only chance of a victory was to move laterally, sneak in uppercuts and jabs, and avoid being a stationary target at all costs.
Cukur was able to minimize the danger for himself by utilizing this tactic in the first couple of rounds. Yet, pressure mattered and the tonnage of Sadjo's punches started to take a toll on Cukur in the third. Kevin Lele Sadjo added more, while the German fighter began to slow down, spending considerably more time on the defensive and at the ropes, which was a fateful tactic in hindsight.
By the fifth, Cukur was a stationary target, sitting behind a high guard and a very closed-up shell. Sadjo's punch output was impressive, as was his power output. However, he lacked precision, and he was unable to differentiate tempo thus allowing Cukur to adjust himself a bit to this power. Cukur tried to move a bit at the end of both the fifth and the sixth rounds and even landed some light uppercuts.
It wasn't enough to prevent Sadjo from inflicting even more danger. In the seventh Cukur started to break down and finally a right-left combination of Sadjo put him down on his knees in the center of the ring. Hard he was getting up. Sadjo went in for kill, and the black towel landed behind his back, forcing the referee to wave it off in the seventh.
Sadjo improves his record to 19-0, 17 KOs, while Cukur goes down to 19-2-1, 3 KOs.