Linares vs Crolla: Anthony Crolla suffers another points defeat in rematch with Jorge Linares
By Richard Damerell
Last Updated: 26/03/17 10:28am
Anthony Crolla failed to regain the WBA lightweight title as Jorge Linares produced a masterful points win in their rematch in Manchester.
The hometown favourite bravely overcame a seventh round knockdown, but could not prevent Linares from repeating his unanimous decision win with a wider 118-109 verdict on all three scorecards.
Crolla began the fight busily, bouncing on his toes before targeting the ribs of Linares, who answered with his own crunching body shot.
The accuracy of Linares was evident in the second round as he countered with sharp punches, while Crolla's guard was prised open by a precise uppercut in the third.
Crolla edged forward, trying to slow Linares with body shots, but the Venezuelan countered him with spiteful combinations.
These slashing punches from Linares soon took their toll on Crolla, who sustained a cut over his left eye after a big right hand in the sixth.
Linares took full advantage of his injured foe in the seventh, uncorking an uppercut which Crolla failed to see until he crumpled to the canvas.
But the Manchester man clambered to his feet and staged a determined response in the eighth to spark roars of approval from his fans.
As his name was chorused, Crolla courageously fired back with right hands in the ninth, but his trainer Joe Gallagher appeared ready to call off this gallant effort after Linares landed his hurtful uppercut again in the 11th.
Crolla did come out for the final round and deservedly heard the last bell, although Linares would celebrate a dominant win.