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Anthony Joshua Outpoints Jermaine Franklin in a Dreary Fight in London

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  • Anthony Joshua Outpoints Jermaine Franklin in a Dreary Fight in London

    Amid the holding and grappling former heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua got the win by unanimous decision against the shorter Jermaine Franklin to finally return to the win column after more than two years on Saturday.

    It wasn’t pretty.

    “I should have knocked him out, but it’s done,” said Joshua.

    If not for the constant holding allowed by the referee, England’s Joshua (25-3, 22 KOs) might have stopped America’s Franklin (21-2, 14 KOs) at the O2 Arena in London. Instead, after 12 mostly dreary rounds it ended in a decision win.

    “Jermain has a good duck and dive style,” said Joshua. “Respect to him. He done well.”

    The last time Joshua won a fight was December 2020 against Kubrat Pulev by knockout. Since that time the tall, muscular former heavyweight titlist lost twice to Oleksandr Usyk.

    Joshua had claimed he would retire if he lost again.

    For the first half of the fight both heavyweights used the jab with Joshua snapping off some long right crosses behind it. Immediately Franklin would counter with his own rights and would land.

    But most of the first few rounds were from a distance.

    “When people come to fight me, they muster up a different kind of energy,” said Joshua about Franklin’s ability to compete 12 rounds. “He’s here to prove himself. He’s not here to roll over.”

    Action really increased around the fifth round with Franklin more intent on getting inside against the much taller Joshua. But every time he charged in the British fighter would grab his arms and hold until the referee broke it up.

    Franklin withstood some big shots, especially from Joshua’s right uppercuts. But as the rounds mounted up the American fighter’s counters became fewer and fewer.

    The entire remainder of the fight was Joshua hitting and holding Franklin’s attempts to fight inside. Though referee Marcus McDonnell advised both fighters to stop the holding, but he never followed up and that allowed the heavyweight fight to slow to a crawl until the final round.

    Joshua would fire off a jab then grab ahold of Franklin’s attempts to counter. It became a dreary fight and the referee allowed the contest to continue in monotony.

    Franklin shared part of the blame by charging in with his arms extended. If he kept his hands tucked in there would be nothing to hold, but for almost the remainder of the fight hitting and holding was the scenario played out.

    In the final round the holding stopped and both fighters exchanged brisk blows. But Franklin seemed more tired than Joshua who stepped in the prize ring heavier than ever. The extra weight did not faze him. Joshua was able to absorb the few big blows from Franklin.

    After 12 rounds one judge scored it 118-111, and two others 117-111 all for Joshua.

    The win allows fans to dream of an all-British clash between Joshua and Tyson Fury.

    “It would be an honor to fight for the WBC title,” said Joshua. “You know me I try to provide for the fans. I know who the fans want.”

    Other Bouts

    Ammo Williams (14-0, 10 KOs) needed a few rounds to figure out England’s River Wilson-Bent before forcing a stoppage at 1:01 of the eighth round of the middleweight fight. Williams was able to floor Wilson-Bent in the seventh round but overall had a rugged six rounds before figuring out the taller British fighter.

    Olympic gold medalist Galal Yafai (4-0, 3 KOs) scored a win by knockout over Mexico’s Moises Calleros (36-11-1) in the fourth round in a flyweight match.

    In a heavyweight fight, Fabio Wardley (16-0, 15 KOs) won by knockout over American Michael Polite-Coffee (13-4) when referee Howard Foster suddenly stopped a flurry by the British fighter though no knockdown was scored.

    Campbell Hatton (11-0, 4 KOs) scored a knockout via body shot over Louis Fielding (10-8) at 1:29 of the first round. The son of boxing great Ricky Hatton used a left hook to the liver to get the stoppage.

  • #2
    They say power is the last thing to go.

    In the case of Anthony Joshua, it was first.

    Tyson Fury creams him.