Selby claims points win
Lee Selby moved a step closer to a shot at the world featherweight title after beating Romulo Koasicha in a WBC eliminator in Cardiff.
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The Welsh fighter was untroubled bar one shaky moment in the eighth round as he cruised to a wide unanimous decision at the Motorpoint Arena.
At the end of the 12 rounds, Selby was ahead 119-109 on two of the judges’ scorecards and took it 119-110 on the third. The win earned him the WBC International belt.
Selby, who improved his record to 19-1, started well and quickly built up a big lead, using his technical abilities to escape the pressure of his Mexican opponent.
He was in cruise control when Koasicha nailed him with a left hook in the eighth which left the European champion unsteady on his feet and wanting to clinch.
But he recovered from that setback to complete the win and boost his hopes of a shot at the WBC world crown, which is currently held by Jhonny Gonzalez.
“It was a WBC eliminator. If I stopped the guy – he’s never been stopped before – it would have sent out a good message to the rest of the featherweight division,” Selby told Sky Sports after the fight.
“But I think I boxed well and I’m ready to move on now.
He added: “To be honest I think I would hold my own with any featherweight, but I want to be ready to win the title and keep defending it and become a legend.”
Earlier in the evening Gavin Rees bowed out of the sport with a split decision victory in his rematch with fellow Welsh lightweight Gary Buckland.
The first clash between the two in February, which Buckland won on points, was a fight of the year contender and the return bout turned out to be another thrilling contest.
Rees had made his plans to retire clear before the clash and rallied in the second half of the fight to ensure he went out with a win.
Buckland threatened to take control in the middle rounds but a strong finish from ‘The Rock’ left him a deserved winner on the cards despite one judge scoring the fight for Buckland.
Also on the card, super-middleweight prospect Callum Smith maintained his unbeaten record and recorded his ninth straight knockout as he chopped down Tobias Webb with a barrage of body shots in the second round.
Callum’s brother Paul Smith, who is trying to line up a shot at WBO super-middleweight champion Arthur Abraham, dispatched David Sarabia with a second round stoppage.