Bradley Defeats Witter
NEW YORK (May 11, 2008) – Photo by Tom Casino / Showtime - Timothy “Desert Storm” Bradley showed no signs of jetlag in his upset, split-decision victory over defending world champion Junior Witter Saturday. Bradley, a four-fight veteran of the SHOWTIME boxing series ShoBox: The New Generation, captured the World Boxing Council (WBC) Super Lightweight Championship by scores of 115-113, 114-113 and 112-115 to become the 25th ShoBox fighter to win a world title.
Article posted on 11.05.2008
The special Saturday night edition of the popular, prospect-oriented series was promoted by Hennessy Sports from the Trent FM Arena at Nottingham, England and aired on a same-day tape delay.
In the co-feature, No. 1-ranked WBC super middleweight contender Carl Froch of Nottingham dispatched late-replacement Albert Rybacki of Poland with a fourth-round stoppage..
The undefeated Bradley (22-0, 11 KOs) had never fought professionally outside his home state of California. Earlier this week, he traveled more than 5,000 miles from his hometown of Palm Springs, Calif., to the homeland of the reigning 140-pound champion for his first world title fight.
Early on, Witter controlled a sloppy fight and appeared to be on his way to his third championship defense. But Bradley, reportedly a 6-1 underdog, rocked the champion in the sixth with a devastating overhand right sending Witter down for only the second time in his career.
That one-punch knockdown turned the tide for Bradley who controlled the rest of the contest with effective aggression.
“I knew this fight was mine,” said the newly crowned 24-year-old champion. “I’ve seen the tapes [of Witter’s past fights], and he fades in the sixth and seventh. And I know that’s when I come on. I get stronger in the later rounds.
“I have been working on that punch,” said Bradley of the overhand right that dropped Witter. “He tends to pull back with his chin up in the air and I just caught him. But I couldn’t finish him. I had to be careful in there. He’s got power in both hands.”
“This can be considered an early candidate for upset of the year,” said renowned ShoBox analyst Steve Farhood. “It is so difficult to win a world title on the road. And to do it with as little experience as Bradley has, this was something special. That one-punch knockdown in the sixth proved to be the difference maker in the fight.”
Witter, 34, drops to 36-2-2, 21 KOs and will have to recalculate his career path. He was lobbying for marquee fights with other top 140-pound fighters including Ricky Hatton.
The undefeated Froch easily outclassed Rybacki and improved his record to 23-0, 19 KOs. Froch was originally scheduled to face Denis Inkin in a WBC final eliminator for the super middleweight title, but Inkin pulled out two weeks ago with a training injury. As a result, the WBC officially named Froch the mandatory challenger to current 168-pound champion Joe Calzaghe.
Froch didn’t have to take this fight to guarantee his title shot but said he was eager to showcase his power to the American television audience on SHOWTIME.
If you missed Saturday’s exciting telecast, catch the replay on SHOWTIME.
Monday, May 12 8 p.m. ET/PT Showtime Extreme
Tuesday, May 13 Midnight Showtime Extreme
And anytime at SHOWTIME On Demand beginning Tuesday, May 13.
Nick Charles and Farhood called the action from ringside in Nottingham with Richard Gaughan producing and Rick Phillips directing. The executive producer of ShoBox: The New Generation is Gordon Hall.
For more information on SHOWTIME Sports, including exclusive video, photos and news links on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING and EliteXC mixed martial arts telecasts, please go www.SHO.com/sports.
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