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  • Miguel Maravilla

Kambosos Edges Hughes Wins Questionable Decision


Photo Mikey Williams/Top Rank


Former lightweight world champion, Australia’s George Kambosos Jr. returned to the win column in pulling off a twelve round majority decision over a very determined Maxi Hughes of Yorkshire, England in an IBF lightweight title eliminator Saturday night at the Fire Lake Arena in Shawnee, Oklahoma in headlining on ESPN.


Kambosos Jr. (21-2, 10 KOs) began by feeling out in the opening round measuring with the jab but rushed in as he appeared to clash his head with the southpaw Hughes (29-4-1, 26 KOs) shoulder. Pressing behind the jab in the second, Kambosos began to pick up the pace as Hughes stood in the pocket. In the third, Kambosos and Hughes mixed it up. Hughes had a good fourth round as he began to fight tactically, bouncing around and smothering as Kambosos seemed off rhythm.


Things began to pick up and get interesting in the fifth, a solid straight left from Hughes connected as Kambosos was cut and began trickling blood from the top of his right eye, Hughes pressed and appeared to have the momentum going his way. However, in the sixth, Kambosos returned the favor as a clash of heads cut Hughes suffering a nasty gash on his left eye. The former world champion began to adjust and get his rhythm past the halfway point in the seventh as Kambosos pressed and outworked Hughes. The cut on Hughes’s eye was stabilized heading into the eighth as he stood in the pocket and mixed it up, roughing up Kambosos.


Late in the fight in the ninth, Hughes boxed behind the jab and timed Kambosos, countering as the Australian charged in. Hughes appeared more composed in the tenth boxing well as Kambosos fought with more aggression, Hughes countered. The championship rounds saw a well composed Hughes boxing and fighting smart as Kambosos pressed Hughes tied him up. The twelfth and final round, Kambosos appeared to be sensing the urgency as Hughes was the more confident fighting poised in going the distance.


After twelve rounds the judges scored the bout 117-111, 115-113, and 114-114 as Kambosos squeaked out the victory over a very game Maxi Hughes.


Kambosos suffered back-to-back defeats at the hands of Devin Haney, relinquishing the lightweight titles last year in June and dropping the rematch in October. With the win, Kambosos looks to get back to world champion status.


Davis Dominates


2021 U.S. Olympic silver medalist, Keyshawn Davis was dominant in winning a one-sided unanimous decision over Belgium’s former European champion Francesco Patera in the lightweight co-feature bout of the evening.


Davis (9-0, 6 KO’) from Norfolk, Virginia was in control from the opening bell, boxing at a fast pace displaying his hand speed early on. Patera (28-4, 10 KOs) fighting bravely never got anything off as Davis countered out landed and outworked the Belgium fighter. Dominating at the halfway point in the fifth, Davis was having his way and at the end of the round Patera shoved Davis as he appeared to be frustrated by Davis’s slick elusive style.


The 24-year-old was smooth as Davis boxed and work Patera in the seventh. In the eighth, a shot to the body by Davis sat Patera down as he got up and finished the round. Fighting patiently, Davis jabbed and followed up with combinations continuing to tag Patera late in the fight. It was clearly Davis’s fight reaching the tenth and final round in closing as Patera pressed fighting tough in going the distance.


Judges scored the bout 100-89, 100-89, and 99-90 as Davis successfully defended his WBC USA & WBO Intercontinental title.


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Southpaw contender Giovani Santillan (31-0, 16 KOs) won a hard-earned decision over tough Ecuadorian Erick Bone (27-7, 14 KOs). In the early rounds, the San Diego native controlled the action with his jab before suddenly sneaking in quick bombs. An undeterred Bone, however, forced Santillan to earn the later rounds by answering back with several straight right hands. Scores: 97-92, 98-92 and 97-93.


Heavyweight: Oklahoma-born prospect Jeremiah Milton (10-0, 7 KOs) notched a fourth-round TKO win against Willie Harvey (4-3-2, 3 KOs). Milton used every bit of his five-inch height advantage to land hooks and right hands from the outside. The sustained punishment wore Harvey down, obligating his corner to halt the bout before the fifth.


Middleweight: U.S. Olympian Troy Isley (10-0, 4 KOs) tallied a workmanlike eight-round unanimous decision against Antonio Todd (14-9, 8 KOs). Isley outlanded Todd in nearly every exchange, but he struggled at times with Todd’s shoulder roll defense and counter punches. Scores: 79-73 3x.


Heavyweight: New Zealand-born standout Hemi Ahio (21-1, 16 KOs) defeated Amron Sands (12-3, 9 KOs) via sixth-round TKO. Both fought at close range for the entire fight, but Ahio’s shorter punches landed harder and more often on the 300-pound Sands. After an unanswered flurry, Ahio forced referee Chris Flores to stop the contest. Time of stoppage: 2:12.

Heavyweight: Australia's Joe Goodall (10-1-1, 9 KOs) scored an upset TKO win against Stephan Shaw (18-2, 13 KOs). After Goodall floored Shaw twice in the sixth round, Shaw’s corner threw in the towel. Time of stoppage: 2:55.

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