David Benavidez vs. Anthony Dirrell in the works for September
By Chris Williams: David Benavidez and Anthony Dirrell have agreed to a deal to face each other in September at a still to be determined venue, averting a purse bid that was scheduled for Friday in Mexico City. This will be the 21-year-old Benavidez’s second defense of his World Boxing Council 168lb title, and it’s a step up in class from his last two fights against Ronald Gavril. The venue for the fight still has to be decided.
Dirrell (32-1-1, 24 KOs) has put together five straight wins since losing his WBC super middleweight title to Badou Jack three years ago in 2015. However, Dirrell’s competition has been woeful for the most part, and he looked terrible in beating Denis Douglin by a 6th round technical decision last year. The 33-year-old Dirrell looked like he’d lost a lot from his game in that fight than in his best years.
Fortunately for Dirrell, he didn’t have to fight a top contender to earn the title shot against Benavidez, as he probably would have lost. Dirrell is not looking like the fighter he was seven years ago. His constant inactivity has really hurt his career. For some reason Dirrell and his brother Andre Dirrell hasn’t been able to stay active like other top fighters in the sport. Andre has been especially in rarely fighting since 2011, but Anthony is not far behind him with his inactivity.
Dirrell’s recent wins have come against this bunch:
– Denis Douglin
– Abraham Han
– Nobert Nemesapati
– Caleb Truax
– Marco Antonio Rubio
Dirrell has gone through the last three years of his career fighting these guys, which is precisvely why it’a taken him three years to get a title shot. Had Dirrell taken on better o
Benavidez recently was on the verge of leaving his promoter Sampson Lewkowicz for Top Rank, but then he had second thoughts and decided to stay with him. Benavidez is signed with Sampson Boxing through 2021.
Benavidez is coming off a second 12 round decision win over Ronald Gavril. He looked a lot better in the second fight than he did in their previous encounter last September. Benavidez struggled to beat Gavril by a 12 round split decision. Benavidez looked badly weight drained against Gavril in the first fight, which had a lot of boxing fans wondering how much longer he’s going to be able to make weight for the division. Benavidez looked much better in the second contest in pounding out a 12 round unanimous decision. Gavril still had his moments in the fight, but wound up losing by the scores 120-108, 119-109 and 120-108.