Bradley doubles up

Two titles for 'Desert Storm' as cut brings unification grind to a halt

By Tim Hobbs   Last updated: 31st January 2011   Subscribe to RSS Feed

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Timothy Bradley became the major belt holder in the light-welterweight division after technical decision over Devon Alexander.

The Californian added the WBC title to his WBO strap after their unification match in Michigan was halted due to a cut, with him ahead on all three cards.

The cut, a wide gash on Alexander's right eyelid, was caused by an accidental clash in the third but was deemed too bad to continue after the pair's heads came together in the 10th. Bradley, who had tried to force the issue from the word go, was handed a 97-93, 96-95, 98-93 win.

If two of the judges' margins were questionable then so was Alexander's stomach for the fight. Even though the second clash was on the opposite side of his face, he made enough of a fuss and put up little protest as the ringside physician told referee Frank Garza the fight had to be called off.

It was a fittingly tame end to a frustrating night in Pontiac which rarely came close to matching the pre-fight hype.

The early cut did not help but the southpaw-orthodox combination made for a messy affair, which will have done little to persuade Amir Khan - watching in the Sky Sports studios - that he cannot clean up completely at 140lbs.

Bradley will be next on his radar, but did little to suggest he has the skills to dismantle the Bolton dazzler. Yes, he was the aggressor all night long, but there was no finesse to his work and no thought in his attacks.

Alexander may have been forced onto the back foot by the cut but he fared better boxing on the retreat - and there are few better than Khan in the game than hitting and moving at speed.

Bradley looked the more composed and compact all night after a promising start in which he negated Alexander's southpaw jab and set the tone, walking his man down, moving him where he wanted but never really unleashing any sustained attacks.

Isolated

On the few occasions he did, he caught Alexander but it was his head that landed the telling blow in the third as the path of the so-called Perfect Match was altered from thereon in.

Bradley followed up his good fortune with three good rights in the fourth, the cleanest shots thus far, but none were the trademark overhand that had done so much damage in his rise to the top of the light-welterweight rankings and all three were isolated assaults.

Growing into his hit-and-run role, Alexander dropped his hands in the fourth and was quick enough or far enough away to swerve more big shots as Bradley bore down on him, all brawn and for the most part, not too much brain.

He took a decent right in return in the sixth and by the seventh the tide seemed to be turning towards the injured party as Alexander felt safe enough to lead off with the left. Bradley spent most of the session covering up - although it was not exactly the sort of barrage to send a ringside punch-counter into meltdown.

A left hook that landed on the cut helped Bradley regain control at the start of the eighth although another clash of heads forced the ringside doctor to give Alexander more than a cursory glance at the end of the round, Kevin Cunningham and his corner shooed him away, insisting their man should be allowed to fight.

It was though, enough to plant the first seeds of doubt in the St Louis man's mind because in the ninth Bradley finally put together some good work, his opening salvo finishing with yet another right and the round closing with him on top and Alexander looking to steer even clearer than before.

He did produce what turned out to be his parting shot at the start of the fateful 10th as a left-right combination landed on the counter. But as he had done all night, Bradley walked him down again and soon enough they came together for the umpteenth time and Alexander left the clinch wincing in pain and wanting to be somewhere else.

Back to the drawing board - or if he gets his wish, a rematch - is where he is headed while the man who calls himself Desert Storm can look forward to a true unification war with Khan. But on this evidence it will be Bradley handing over his two belts to Bolton's finest.

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Comments (15)

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Colin Chessman says...

i dont particularly rate khan however knowone can deny that hes come on leaps and bounds since the prescott fight, hes not rushing in hes taking his time and is outboxing and out manoeuvreing his opponents. judging on the display between alexander and bradley i would have to say a khan bout would be a very unappealing and unattractive fight that i certainly wont be paying to watch, just another no contest! khan will destroy any of these 2 and needs to be looking to the big leagues if hes 2 gain the repect he so craves. a rematch with prescott would just be a step down in class and a total waste of time khan is in a different league now and isnt stupud enough 2 just run in on his opponents, roach has done an incredible job on khans attitude he is now a smart fighter and as fast as ever with even more power (a dangerous combination of attributes) however still one major weakness his chin allthough he did well 2 stay on his feet against maidanas brain rattlers he looked ugly in doing so, and had cortez not been so involved in the fight then this could have been the defining factor in the match. one more round and i think he would have gone down but credit where credit is due he outboxed him and deserved the points victory

Posted 11:00 31st January 2011

Nazza . says...

bradley has no chance of beating khan, amir is much faster and skilled and its only a matter of time before the yanks lose another world champ!!

Posted 10:43 31st January 2011

John Barr says...

both of those fighters would hand khan his head .why do the english think they can match the technical skills of these fighters .it just never ceases to amaze me ,the unjustified arrogance .

Posted 16:34 30th January 2011

Darren Holland says...

Khan doesn't stand a chance against another champion in this division. I cannot see him handling a Bradley hard blast! Don't believe the hype...Until he disposes of Breidis Precott who wants him jury is still out as to how much he has REALLLY progressed

Posted 16:13 30th January 2011

Steven Divver says...

Amir should fight in the USA if he has wanted to.I personally would not go to England.

Posted 15:47 30th January 2011

Niaz Petkar says...

With all the pre fight hype this was a poor fight. Neither boxer showed any skill that makes them world Champions. Khan would have No problem exposing the flaws Bradley has in his armoury. Bradley is only keeping the belts warm around his waist untill DESTROYED by an explosive Khan.

Posted 15:18 30th January 2011

Paul W says...

The idea that Witter ever was or ever would be Britain's best light welterweight is an absolute joke. Every time I've seen Witter fight he was absolutely useless and stunk out the place. IMHO Khan has a gr8 chance of beating Bradley but only if he can avoid his nut - you might gather that I feel that Bradley is a dirty fighter!

Posted 13:36 30th January 2011

Darren O'neill says...

Bradley did enough to get a decision in what was a poor fight. 3 rnds in you could see Alexander realised his gonna lose his belt. So next is Khan, and i think Khan could have a counter punching field day using his speed in the first 6, then use his power and stamina to beat Bradley on the scorecard. I hope it is in England, and he will then show that the Maidana fight was not just a one off. He has gone up in pedigree and aslong as he doesnt do his own thing in the ring and stays smart, he will unify the division.

Posted 13:08 30th January 2011

Darren Pritchard says...

khan is easier to hit than people realise. he has fast hands but tends to get caught alarmingly often. but a Bradley vs Khan fight is what is wanted by everyone .

Posted 13:08 30th January 2011

Adam Whiteley says...

khan has the beating of this guy, doesnt bradley remind you of maidana? coming forward swinging wildly, khan is more accurate than alexander and speed kills as roach says, khan will be way too quick for bradly, and his chis is not an issue now as maidana is the hardes hitter out there in light welter weight division and khan took the lot, so dont see any threat posed by bradley.

Posted 12:57 30th January 2011

Steven Boyle says...

Khan's too easy to hit, Bradley in 3 years has come to england beat our best light welterweight, the guy Hatton went heaven and earth to avoid to take the WBC Title, beat Peterson, Holt, Alexander, in doing so won 2 unification fights, 'Bolton's finest' will be beaten, Bradley's the best light welterweight in the world lets give him his just does!, Khan's far too predictable this guy will be too clever for him

Posted 12:30 30th January 2011

Walton Breck says...

This fight just made Khan's last performance look even more impressive. Based on this showing I would expect Amir to dispose of either Bradley or Alexander far more easily than Maidana. Extremely disappointing as I was really looking forward to it. By the way pulling Dodson out of Prizefighter when he was allowed to go into the third round of his second fight was a disgrace! Dodson would have had that Dickenson on toast!

Posted 12:01 30th January 2011

Paul W says...

It's about time Bradley was disqualified for headbutting - he does this to some degree in all of his fights. I think Khan has the skills to beat Bradley but he'll have to come up with a way of avoiding his head or have a referee that will do his job properly.

Posted 11:59 30th January 2011

Jamie Church says...

alexander just did'nt want it and looked for an easy way out, no respect at all for him, and from last night's showing i don't think khan has anything to worry about

Posted 11:36 30th January 2011

Adam Scott says...

Sound's like Khans going to be in for an easy night if he can dodge Bradley's huge head!!! Bring on all the belts for Khan I say then he can move up and challenge the big boys!

Posted 10:08 30th January 2011

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