History for Hopkins

  • Last Updated: April 20 2014, 8:39 BST

Bernard Hopkins once again made history by becoming the oldest boxer to unify a weight division after adding the WBA light-heavyweight crown to his IBF title with a split-decision victory over Beibut Shumenov.

Bernard Hopkins: World champion at the age of 49
Bernard Hopkins: World champion at the age of 49

Hopkins, already the oldest man to win a recognised world title, continues to confound his critics at 49 and once more beat a much younger man in Washington.

However, a split-decision verdict - two scores of 116-111 in his favour against 114-113 in Shumenov's - did not reflect his dominance.

The American made a typically sluggish start but came on strong from the third round onwards and knocked his 30-year-old foe down with a punishing right in the 11th.

Hopkins, who has not stopped an opponent in nearly a decade, could not finish off the Kazakh but finished well and was given the nod to improve his record to 55 wins from 65 fights, with six defeats, two draws and two no contests.

Hopkins compared himself to one of the sport's all-time greats following his momentous win.

"I describe my legacy like a Joe Frazier," he said. "We get knocked down but we get back up.

"I'll let the historians analyse and debate over the years as I grow a deeper grey beard watching soap operas. I'll let them break down my legacy."