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Photos: Kal Yafai Retains WBA Title, Holds Off Tough Ishida

By Elliot Foster

Kal Yafai made the second defence of his world title in a successful manner.

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The WBA super-flyweight king, who won the belt last December before a maiden defence back in May, outpointed undefeated mandatory challenger Sho Ishida at the Principality Stadium.

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Yafai was dominant throughout, though Ishida had his moments, on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s bid to retain his IBF, WBA Super and IBO heavyweight titles against Carlos Takam in Cardiff.

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The Birmingham man won comprehensively on the scorecards, with the three scoring judges handing in unanimous decision tallies of 118-110, 116-112 and 116-112.

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A fight in America could well be next for Yafai, who has been spoken about as a potential future foe for Roman Gonzalez, should ‘Chocolatito’ opt to continue in the sport on the back of two consecutive defeats at the hands of Srisaket Sor Rungvisai.

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HBO, on the back of their ‘Superfly’ card back on September 9, are showing big interest in the super-flyweight division and it could see the former Team GB star head Stateside.

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And that is something that Yafai echoed in his post-fight interview.

“Who knows?” he responded, when asked what would be next. “I wasn’t too impressed and felt a bit sluggish, but I got the win against an awkward opponent.

“My hands are sore, so we'll see how long they will keep me out and I want to get them checked.

“If I could get out in the spring, that would be great.”

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Frank Buglioni made a successful second defence of the Lonsdale belt.

The Enfield light-heavyweight plodded through against late replacement Craig Richards at the Principality Stadium.

Buglioni, who was marked, bumped and bruised at the final bell, took some unnecessary shots against the former Southern Area super-middleweight king, who was up at 175lbs for the first time.

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And once he had realised that Richards –– who boxed just last weekend in Belfast –– couldn’t hurt him with anything, he began to just walk forward and eventually took all the energy from his former sparring partner, who had success in the early stages after replacing Callum Johnson earlier in fight week.

The three scoring ringside judges had the fight in favour of the titlist, handing in comfortable tallies of 117-111 twice and a tighter one of 116-113.

“It came down to experience, I was just a little bit cuter,” Buglioni told Sky Sports afterwards. “He took massive right hands and stiff body shots so credit to him.”

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It is now likely that Hosea Burton, who Buglioni vanquished last December to clinch the crown, will be installed as the mandatory challenger, but official word regarding that situation is expected by the British Boxing Board of Control in due course.

“If Hosea Burton wants it, he can come and get it,” Buglioni concluded.

Tags: Sho Ishida image   Kal Yafai image   photos image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by 1hourRun on 10-29-2017

This was the only world level fight out of this appalling event, once again the lighter weights exposes the overrated HW division ; glad I fell asleep before the Dillian Shyte and Anthony Joshua fights, from the comments I'm reading…

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