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Figueroa Jr claims interim WBC title, Gradovich retains IBF strap

Figueroa Jr claims interim WBC title, Gradovich retains IBF strap
By Eurosport

28/07/2013 at 19:36Updated 28/07/2013 at 19:42

Omar Figueroa Jr. (22-0-1) became the interim WBC lightweight champion courtesy of an unanimous decision over Japan's Nihito Arakawa (24-3-1).

It was a bruising affair, with Arakawa taking two eight counts and having to cope with some severe swelling over the eye; while Figueroa suffered a nasty gashed nose from an accidental head butt.

But it was Figueroa’s edge in power that secured the unanimous decision with scores of 118-108, 119-107 and 118-108.

The ferocious nature of the fight saw Al Bernstein describe it as "Ward-Gatti-esque".

A 10th-round knockout was enough for Keith Thurman (23-0, 19 KOs) to secure the interim WBA welterweight belt from Diego Chavez (22-1)

Thurman started slowly but rallied to put Chaves down with a solid body shot in the ninth.

He then caught Chaves along the ropes with a right to take the spoils in the next round.

Evgeny Gradovich retained his IBF featherweight title after defeating Mauricio Munoz by a unanimous decision, which improves the Russian’s record to 17-0.

The scorecards read 120-108 on one and 119-109 on the other two.

On the same bill, Juan Francisco Estrada also made a successful defence of his WBO-WBA flyweight titles, defeating Milan Melindo by a unanimous decision.

The defeat marked Melindo’s first in 29 fights.

Jesus Soto Karass beat Andre Berto in the 12th round of their welterweight fight late on Saturday night.

Though Berto (28-3) floored Soto Karass with a left-hand body shot in the 11th, the American couldn't sustain the rally - something he attributed to injury.

"In the fourth round I tore (something) in my shoulder," Berto said. "I'm a warrior. I don't quit. I'm always going to put it all on the line."

By the end of the 11th, Soto Karass recovered from the knockdown and bloodied Berto's lip, and the Mexican ended it on a technical knockout with the left hand 48 seconds into the final round.

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