Okolie vs. Light – Tonight’s Live Results From Manchester

By Boxing News - 03/25/2023 - Comments

By Mark Eisner: WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie (19-0, 14 KOs) put in a workmanlike performance, successfully defeating his previously unbeaten mandatory David ‘Great White’ Light (20-1, 12 KOs) by a 12 round unanimous decision retain his title on Saturday night at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England.

The scores were 116-112, 119-108, and 117-110. Boxing News 24 scored it 116-112 for Okolie.

In the 11th round, Okolie was penalized a point by referee  Bob Williams for his grappling.

Perhaps the training that the 6’5″ Okolie has been doing alongside Tyson Fury has rubbed off because he was mauling like mad tonight, grappling with light every chance he could get to keep him from getting his shots off.

Finally, the referee Williams had seen enough and took a point off in the 11th.

Undercard results

  • Super featherweight Michael Gomez Jr (19-1, 5 KOs) defeated Levi Giles (13-1, 3 KOs) by a 10-round split decision to win the vacant England title. The scores were 97-94, 97-93, and 97-93.
  • Domestic heavyweight Frazer Clarke (6-0, 5 KOs) stopped journeyman Bogdan Dinu (20-5, 16 KOs) in the second round of a scheduled eight-round fight.  The 36-year-old Romanian Dinu suffered a rib injury and could no longer continue. The 271-lb Clarke picked up his sixth win over his two-year professional career. Although Clarke picked up a swift victory, he looked painfully slow and was hit at will by Dinu until the stoppage. Obviously, there’s nothing Clarke can do about his weight or lack of hand speed, but he’s got to work on his defense because if his promoters match him against better opposition one of these days, he will take a royal thrashing.
  • Undefeated super middleweight prospect Callum Simpson (11-0, 9 KOs) stopped Celso Neves (9-4-2, 2 KOs) by a third round knockout.
  • Featherweight Rhys Edwards (14-0, 4 KOs) beat Brian Phillips (12-4, 3 KOs) by a six round points decision. The score was 60-55.
  • Unbeaten middleweight prospect Shakiel ‘Dr. Steel’ Thompson (10-0, 6 KOs) outclassed Polish journeyman Robert Talarek (27-18-3, 18 KOs), winning a six round points decision. The score was 59-54. Thompson, 25, was penalized a point in the sixth round for hitting below the belt.
  • Female featherweight prospect Karriss Artingstal (3-0) beat Linzi Buczynskyj (4-2) by a six round points decision. The score was 60-55.
  • Middleweight Aaron McKenna (16-0, 8 KOs) defeated former Tommy Fury victim Jordan Grant (6-3) by a six round points decision. The score was 60-54.
  • Junior middleweight prospect Harvey Lambert (2-0, 1 KOs) dominated Casey Brown (4-2), beating him by a one-sided points decision. The score was 40-37 score.

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How to watch Lawrence Okolie vs. David Light?

Okolie vs. Lightweight will be shown live on Sky Sports and on ProBox TV in the U.S. and internationally, beginning at 3:00 p.m. ET.

“I feel like winning this fight opens the door for so many other fights. Yeah, why not?” said Lawrence Okolie to Secondsout when asked if he would be interested in fighting other champions in the cruiserweight division to unify the belts.

“I think it’ll be very explosive,” said Okolie about his fight tonight against Light. “It’ll start off very, after seeing his training, it will be systematic.

“There are a couple of fighters I don’t like, but other than that; I don’t have a problem with them. It’s just boxing,”  said Okolie when told that he doesn’t seem like the type that has a dislike for other fighters in his weight class for a grudge match.

“I’ve sparred him in the past. I haven’t had a full spar this time, but we did some body sparring,” said Okolie when asked if he’d done any sparring with WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, given that he’s now sharing the same trainer with him in SugarHill Steward and trains out of the same camp.

“Body sparring obviously isn’t the full head contact, but it does open up certain positions in clinches and setting up the shots. It’s good to see how he’s developed in that sense.

“I don’t want to say it’s something that I’m going to use in this fight. He’s given me some good advice in terms of fights, and what I should do against someone that is stronger than and taller than. Some things I already know, but certain little tweaks to the positioning,” said Okolie.

When will Okolie and Light fight?

WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie and his mandatory challenger David Light will be fighting tonight at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England, and will be shown live on Sky Sports in the UK and on ProBox TV internationally, including in the U.S. It begins at 3:00 p.m. ET.

“So hopefully, even in that, it’s all about execution in that,” continued Okolie. “I do. I’ve seen southpaw sparring, so he’s setting it up towards it,” said Okolie when asked if he believes the Fury vs. Oleksandr Usyk fight can be salvaged so it can still happen.

“Hopefully, the negotiations don’t become too much of a problem because in my weight class, I was so happy to see one champion. It’s one of my goals to accomplish. So I want to see one of them do it.

“Yes, there’s obviously a border. He’s already won a world title,” said Okolie when asked if Fury is right to be taking the stance that he has in his negotiations with IBF, WBA & WBO heavyweight champion Usyk in terms of the rematch clause.

“It’s difficult. When you haven’t gotten to a certain height, that’s more important to you than anything else, but when you get to a certain age and stage that Tyson Fury is in, you don’t have too many more years left.

“When it’s all said and done, all that’s left is what you’ve won and how much money you’ve got left. Look at a good friend of mine, Anthony Joshua. He’s unfortunately lost to Usyk, and now, ‘He’s done. He’s not the best.’

“He’s given us so many great fights, so many world title fights, and so many wins, but it gets forgotten. So you can’t really do what everyone says. I look at everyone as an opponent, but not in a vindictive way. I’ll box Tyson; I’ll box AJ; I’ll box anyone.

“Of course,  you have to win as a fighter, but I don’t share the same sentiment that it’s over,” Okolie said about Anthony Joshua. “He’s such a big star. He’s a heavyweight. It’s different. As a boxer, I know. Obviously, at heavyweight, anything can happen; wins, losses, whatever. It’s about the journey, you know?

“I don’t think it’s a be-all or end-all, but it is obviously a high-pressure fight,” said Okolie about Joshua’s bout against Jermaine Franklin on April 1st.

“I said what I said on the day. The one thing I don’t want to do is get in a back-and-forth with Eddie [Hearn]. He’s a great talker and has a great personality. The best of luck to him. It’s become more clear with each day. Guys are great when they’re with him and s**t when they’re not with him.

“It’s more that I was right about what I said legally, and outside of that, there’s other little bits & bobs that we’re going to do, but they’re going to get spanked the same way,” said Okolie.

WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie will be in action tonight, defending against his upset-minded mandatory David Light in the main event at the Manchester Arena in England in a Boxxer event, live on ProBox TV. The Okolie vs. Light event will be shown on Sky Sports in the UK and on ProBox TV in the U.S. and internationally.