3 More Rounds

Fonfara edges Cleverly in a war

Photos: David Earnisse/PBC

Photos: David Earnisse/PBC

On Friday night’s Premier Boxing Champions card in Chicago, Andrzej Fonfara and Nathan Cleverly put on a Fight of the Year candidate, when the two went twelve rounds of grueling action.

Fonfara (28-3 16 KOs) got into an exchange with Cleverly (29-3, 15 KOs) early on and never let up as the two fighters were game to trade leather on the inside from start to finish.  In the first few rounds, Cleverly had a little more pep in his step as he fired back with quick and hard punches anytime Fonfara would land a combination.  As the fight wore on, Fonfara however, started to assert his dominance as he busted up Cleverly’s nose, which bled for the remainder of the fight and appeared broken to the naked eye.

Fonfara and Cleverly continued their phone booth fight with neither man willing to give up an inch, even after the bell as they frequently landed a punch or two after the end of a round.

After twelve brutal rounds, Fonfara got the nod with scores of 115-113 and 116-112 twice.

“I thought I would knock him out before the fight, but during the fight I realized he has great defense,” said Fonfara afterward. “I had no idea he could take so many punches and still be in the fight. I realized it would be very hard to knock him out. I respect him very much”

Cleverly, who along with Fonfara broke the light heavyweight record for most punches landed in a fight, was happy with his overall performance.

“It was a fantastic fight – I had a feeling that our styles were going to gel and that’s what happened. It was a war from the very first bell and I am not surprised that it broke the records for the most punches thrown because when we started we just didn’t stop.”


In the co-feature, Kohei Kono (31-8-1, 13 Kos) retained his junior featherweight title with a unanimous decision win over former champ Koki Kameda (33-2, 18 KOs).

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