Sebastian Fundora crowned unified super-welterweight champion after bloodbath with Tim Tszyu
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 30: WBO junior middleweight champion Tim Tszyu (L) takes a punch from Sebastian Fundora during the ninth round of a title fight at T-Mobile Arena.decision. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)

Sebastian Fundora (21-1-1 13 KOs) beat Tim Tszyu (24-1 17 KOs) by split decision to become WBO & WBA champion in a gruelling contest that left both fighters covered in blood. 

Tszyu sustained an awful cut after his head clashed with Fundora’s elbow at the end of the second round, with blood immediately gushing from the top of Tszyu’s head.

The Australian took the defeat graciously saying: “I couldn’t see but credit belongs to the man who won tonight. 

“I was swinging hard in the first round then bam, you’re completely blind. This is part of the sport, it happens, congratulation to Fundora.”

The final judges’ scorecards read 116-112, 115-113 in favour of Fundora and 116-112 in favour of Tszyu.

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Sebastian Fundora poses with his belts after competing against Tim Tszyu (not seen) during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Sebastian Fundora poses with his  welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship at the T-Mobile Arena. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Defending WBO champion Tszyu took the fight on 12 days’ hoping to follow in his legendary father’s footsteps by becoming unified world champion.

With the vacant WBC title also up for grabs, Fundora, who stands at 6’6” and is nicknamed ‘The Towering Inferno’, was fighting for the first time since his first defeat last year. 

Tszyu controlled the opening two rounds and looked sharp as he countered Fundora’s long jab with big right hands that snapped the American’s head back. 

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Tim Tszyu (in gold & black short) and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Tim Tszyuand Sebastian Fundoraexchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

The fight changed just before the bell sounded at the end of the second round as the accidental clash happened and the cut opened on Tszyu’s head. 

With it looking like the fight may be stopped the referee had a close look at the injury, before consulting the ringside doctor who allowed the fight to continue. 

If a fight is to be stopped before the fourth round, it would be deemed a no contest but if the fight was to go past the fourth, it would go to judges’ scorecards at that point. 

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: (EDITORS NOTE: Image depicts graphic content) Tim Tszyu (in gold & black short) and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Tim Tszyu and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Unsure whether he would see out a further two rounds, Tszyu looked to land heavy shots and get Fundora out of there as quickly as possible. 

As blood poured, Tszyu’s vision was getting increasingly worse. He was starting to miss shots and was unable to avoid Fundora’s, who upped his output and landed a persistent jab.

Fundora grew in confidence and won the third and fourth clearly as he countered at range when Tszyu missed his shots. 

Tszyu was constantly wiping blood away from his eyes to maintain as much vision as possible and tried to land big shots to hurt an also bloodied Fundora.

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: (EDITORS NOTE: Image depicts graphic content) Tim Tszyu (in gold & black short) and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Tim Tszyu and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Sticking to his jab and using all his nine-inch reach advantage the American restricted Tszyu to occasional success when he threw his right hand.

Fundora stayed disciplined and stuck to his boxing as a brave Tszyu continued to try and walk him down and land hurtful shots in the late rounds. 

Tszyu still landed shots and had the better punches landed percentage, but it was Fundora’s output throughout that was enough to earn the split-decision win. 

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: (EDITORS NOTE: Image depicts graphic content) Tim Tszyu (in gold & black short) and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: (EDITORS NOTE: Image depicts graphic content) Tim Tszyu (in gold & black short) and Sebastian Fundora (in red & black short) exchange punches during their super welterweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night as Sebastian Fundora wins at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Desperately unlucky after a good start Tszyu will be hoping he gets a deserved rematch, whereas Fundora was called out by Errol Spence after the fight. 

However, the WBO is expected to order a mandatory defence for Fundora against pound-for-pound king and unified welterweight champion Terrance Crawford next week. 

Undercard 

On the undercard Isaac Cruz (26-2-1 18 KOs) stopped Rolando Romero (15-2 13 KOs) in the eighth round to become WBA super-lightweight champion after a ruthless performance.

Challenger Cruz dominated from the start and hurt Romero bad in the first round. Romero somehow stayed on his feet after a huge right hand and survived the round. 

Although Romero had some success on the back foot, staying true to his nickname Pitbull, Cruz continued to bombard Romero with ferocious combinations round after round. 

Romero was unable to keep Cruz away and in the seventh round took another big combination. The referee had seen enough and waved off the contest to prevent Romero from taking more damage. 

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Isaac Cruz ''Pitbull'' (in white short) knocked Rolando Romero ''Rolly'' (in burgundy short) out during their super lightweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 30: Isaac Cruz ''Pitbull'' (in white short) knocked Rolando Romero ''Rolly'' (in burgundy short) out during their super lightweight world titles of the Premiere Boxing Championship on Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States on March 30, 2024. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Erislandy Lara (30-3-3 18 KOs) defended his WBA middleweight title as he spectacularly knocked out Michael Zerafa (31-5 19 KOs) in the second round. 

Lara showed no signs of aging at 40-years-old as he put on a brilliant performance to knockout Australian Zerafa. The southpaw found his rhythm early and picked his shots well. 

In the second round Lara landed a huge left-hand flush on the chin of Zerafa that sent him crashing to the canvas hard. 

The fight was stopped as a hurt Zerafa tried to get to his feet. Lara made his second success defence as he looked as sharp as ever. 

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 30: WBA middleweight champion Erislandy Lara poses with his belt after defeating Michael Zerafa in a title fight at T-Mobile Arena on March 30, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Lara retained his title with a second-round knockout. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 30: WBA middleweight champion Erislandy Lara poses with his belt after defeating Michael Zerafa in a title fight at T-Mobile Arena on March 30, 2024.. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)

Julio Cesar Martinez (21-3 15 KOs) retained his WBC flyweight title by split decision after an incredible battle with Angelino Cordova (18-1-1 12 KOs).

Martinez started fast and dropped Cordova twice in the second round. However, the Venezuelan fought back well in what was an incredible contest. 

The knockdowns proved to be vital in the end for Martinez as the final scorecard read 114-112, 114-112 in favour of the champion and a 113-113 draw. 

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