LONDON — At London’s Wembley Arena, Australian professional boxer Jai Opetaia defeated his British challenger Jordan Thompson to successfully defend his world cruiserweight title. In a masterful performance, the 2012 Olympian defeated Thompson to retain his IBF and The Ring Magazine belts with a fourth-round TKO.
The first knockdown on Thompson was averted by the bell, but the second caused the stoppage at 0:20 of round four.
Opetaia(23-0, 18 KO) started putting it on Thompson almost as soon as the bell rang.
“I stand here in this ring and I’m born for this shit,” said Opetaia in media reports after making his first successful cruiserweight championship defense.
Early in round three, Opetaia recorded the first of the night’s two knockdowns. Although he claimed he was wrestled to the ground, it happened after Thompson connected with a power shot before he received one in response. Prior to the action starting again, he was made to take an eight count. Just before the bell, Opetaia kept up the attack and severely rocked Thompson.
Early in the fourth round, Thompson was cornered as Opetaia pushed in to close the exhibition. Thompson’s face was slashed in blood by a left hand down the middle, and the British fighter was knocked to the ground with a right hook.
With his first career loss, Thompson, who improved to 15-1 (12KOs), received a sobering reality check.
“I felt like this entire fight week was about Jordan Thompson,” said Opetaia in media reports. “It was nothing to do with me. They put me in this small ring thinking they were going to cut me off but look what happened. I got good footwork… I told them I got good power, too. Look what happened.”
Edited by Judy J. Rotich and Newsdesk Manager
“What’s the latest with Florida Man?”
Get news, handpicked just for you, in your box.