Fundora Beats Tszyu In A Split Decision; Spence Wants Him Next

Sebastian Fundora became the Unified Junior Middleweight Champion, beating Tim Tszyu in a split decision to win the WBO and WBC belts.

Both fighters headlined on PBC’s first PPV with Amazon Prime Video. Tszyu arrived into the fight as the WBO champion, taking the Fundora bout on less than two weeks’ notice in an attempt to add to his title with the vacant WBC belt. His original opponent, Keith Thurman, pulled out with a bicep injury, hindering Tszyu’s preparation. Fundora was always going to be a tough test, given that he is a six-foot-five southpaw.

Both fighters tried to work each other out in the opening two rounds. Tszyu had the first success, popping Fundora’s head back with a right hand. The WBO champion repeated the trick in the second, edging the first two rounds. All seemed well until Tszyu leant into Fundora’s elbow at the end of the second. He began bleeding heavily from above his hairline, while Fundora’s nose appeared broken. 

The fight continued with an action-packed third round. Tszyu pressed the action, while Fundora punished the Australian with his jab. The momentum had shifted. The WBO champion’s vision was comprised, but Tszyu stayed in the fight.

Tsyzu showed his resolve, landing a few right-hand counters in the sixth as Fundora tried to connect with his jab. Tszyu’s corner worked desperately to stop the bleeding as his eyes swelled excessively. The ringside doctor gave the Australian the go-ahead to start the seventh. 

Tszyu was visibly blinking in the tenth, knowing he needed a knockout. The Australian connected his right hand to Fundora’s face, but the challenger countered with a left, when Tszyu came on the inside. Tszyu avoided Fundora’s jab in the eleventh, as both men threw everything in the final round.

The champion could not find a breakthrough, as Fundora won a split decision: 116-112, 112-116, 115-113. The split decision, in truth, did not tell the whole story, as had it not been for the cut, Tszyu may have had a different outcome. There were question marks over whether the fight should have been stopped after Tszyu’s cut and ruled a no-contest. But after the fight, Errol Spence Jr. entered the ring to call out Fundora.

Reaction

“Of course, he’s a world class fighter. He’s a world champion for a reason. The way I won my belt, it’s an honour to share a ring and make history with him,” Fundora

“I told you I’m an old throwback fighter. I couldn’t see, but all credit belongs to the man who won tonight. You know what, these things happen. The momentum was rolling, I was swinging hard in the first two rounds and then boom, you’re blinded completely. This is boxing, this is part of the sport. This thing happens. Congratulations to Fundora, he’s the new king of the 154 (pound division). We’ll bounce back. The arena showed up. I showed up still. No matter what. I’ll always bring the fight. I was given one week, no excuses. I’ll fight whoever, whenever. Even Errol Spence is here, I’ll fight him. Even Terence Crawford. You want a good scrap? You know who to call,” Tszyu

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Full Card

Sebastian Fundora def. Tim Tszyu via a split decision (116-112, 115-113, 112-116)

Isaac Cruz def. Rolando Romero via a eighth-round TKO

Erislandy Lara def. Michael Zerafa via a second-round TKO

Julio Cesar Martinez def. Angelino Cordova via a majority decision (113-113, 114-112 x2)

Serhii Bohachuk def. Brian Mendoza via a unanimous decision (118-110, 117-111 x2)

Curmel Moton def. Anthony Cuba via a unanimous decision (80-72 x3)

Mirco Cuello def. Sulaiman Segawa via a unanimous decision (80-72, 79-73, 78-74)

Kaipo Gallegos def. Eric Howard via a unanimous decision (60-53 x2, 59-54)

Justin Villoria def. Erick Benitez via a unanimous decision (40-36 x3)

boxing newsErrol Spence Jr.Keith ThurmanSebastian FundoraTim Tszyu