Daniel Roman loses WBA and IBF titles to Murodjon Akhmadaliev
Murodjon Akhmadaliev makes history as Uzbekistan's first unified world champion
Last Updated: 31/01/20 5:53am
Murodjon Akhmadaliev shocked unified world super-bantamweight champion Daniel Roman in a split decision to win the WBA 'Super' and IBF titles in Miami.
Akmadaliev upset the odds to become the first unified world champion from Uzbekistan in just his eighth fight as a professional after securing victory via scores of 115-113, 115-113, 113-115.
The 2016 Olympic bronze medallist planted his feet in search of power as he went head-hunting in the first two rounds, catching the champion with some heavy shots.
Roman kept his cool behind a tight guard and began to counter in the third before attempting to assert his authority from the centre of the ring in the fourth, but the challenger finished strongly.
After another couple of tight rounds, Roman got behind his long jab and teed up the Uzbek before following up with uppercuts.
The Californian started the ninth by landing a heavy right to the head but the aggressive Akhmadaliev soaked up the punishment and continued marching forward swinging.
The southpaw unleased a two-handed attack to the body in the 10th and by the end of the round had opened a cut above Roman's right eye.
Roman blooded the Akhmadaliev's nose in the final round and both fighters finished strongly, landing heavy blows to leave a close fight in the hands of the judges.