By Sean Ness: Tonight we saw the arrival of James Chunky DeGale (21-1-0) with his 12 round unanimous decision win over American Andre Dirrell (24-2, 16 KOs) to win the vacant IBF 168lb title at the Agganis Arena, Boston Massachusetts. DeGale had been cool, calm and collective in the build up to this world title fight and took that mantra into the squared circle with him.
The 1st round saw Londoner DeGale size up his opponent using his jab and connecting well, which ultimately gave the opening round to Chunky. It appeared that Dirrell’s corner seemed concerned at the conviction of DeGale’s fight.
The 2nd round started with both fighters trying to beat each other to the jab. However, DeGale caught Dirrell with a sweet left to the chin, sending the older Dirrell brother to the canvas.
The U.S fighter almost bounced up straight away, letting his corner know that he wasn’t in any trouble. However, his eyes and facial expressions said otherwise. DeGale instantly smelled victory and again flew in with another assault which resulted in Dirrell getting knocked down again.
The third round saw DeGale take the fight to his opponent, pressuring Dirrell constantly. However, DeGale flogged the fourth round, allowing the Flint, Michigan native back into the fight, as he was able to catch DeGale with some telling shots through the rounds.
The 6th and 7th round again saw the fight go back and forth with DeGale easily taking the 6th round, catching Dirrell with a big right hand followed by a couple of neat combinations. However, the tide again changed in the 7th with Dirrell looking focused and getting off some combinations of his own.
Moving into the championship rounds of the fight, Dirrell was sneaking back into the fight showing great courage with some slick shots and loading up those lightning quick combinations. DeGale had no answers to his opponents questions. In the 12th round, DeGale looked to have put on his running shoes ensuring he didn’t take any punishment and not dishing out any of his own which kept the Boston and international boxing fans guessing if he done enough to see off the ever brave and durable Dirrell?
With this win, DeGale is now the IBF Super Middleweight Champion winning via a 12 round unanimous decision. The judges scored the fight 112-114 109-117 and 112-114.
What’s next for DeGale is anyone’s guess, but one thing is for sure, DeGale won’t be short of fighters eager to get their hands on his title, and it appears he doesn’t care who is next.
“I will fight any Super Middleweight” DeGale said after his win.
DeGale: Mission Complete
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