Dubois Stops Hrgovic Due To A Severe Cut, Wins The IBF Interim Belt

Daniel Dubois stopped Filip Hrgovic in round eight to become the IBF Interim Heavyweight Champion. 

There was plenty on the line, with the winner becoming either mandatory for Oleksandr Usyk’s Undisputed Heavyweight Title or the full IBF champion if the Ukrainian was stripped. Hrgovic landed the first big blows with two right hands over the top, with Dubois staying in the pocket.

Hrgovic was landing clean as Dubois kept himself squared up. While Dubois landed two right crosses, the Croatian had a dominant start. Hrgovic had a strong start to the second, landing a right cross, followed by a left hook. Dubois responded with another cross in a very high-paced fight.

Dubois ended the round strong, backing Hrgovic on the ropes before letting fly with his left hand over the top. The bell rang with Hrgovic bleeding near his right eye. Dubois started the third in control, backing up Hrgovic. A left hook landed for Dubois. As the blood continued to pour from near his right eye, Hrgovic was already feeling the pace as he slowed down.

Dubois was now the stronger fighter, as his jab began landing more consistently in the fourth. Hrgovic responded with a right hand, but Dubois followed up with a one-two combination. Dubois was chasing Hrgovic, but the Croatian had some success in the fifth. He connected with a few jabs and a couple of right hands. Hrgovic also landed with an uppercut in a much better round.

Dubois was turning the screw in the seventh, landing lefts to the body and upstairs to the head. Dubois was in control, with Hrgovic on the back foot. The Brit landed a huge right hand, with Hrgovic somehow staying on his feet. The referee then warned Dubois for hitting on the back of his head at the end of the seventh.

The inevitable happened in the eighth. Dubois got Hrgovic on the ropes, landing a huge hook. With Dubois sensing a stoppage, the referee instructed the ringside doctor to inspect Hrgovic’s cuts. The fight was waived off, as Dubois got the stoppage in the eighth, giving Hrgovic his first-career defeat. There are now suggestions that Dubois could fight Anthony Joshua in September either as an IBF champion if Usyk is stripped or for the vacant belt.

“I think so, yeah, I mean we’re going to go to His Excellency’s now. If a world title’s on the line, which I think it may well be, it’s a big fight. Daniel did excellently tonight. I know that His Excellency wanted to look at the Wilder fight, obviously that’s not there anymore, so we’ll have to look at what’s next. I believe there’s a press conference coming up in a couple of weeks and we shall make an announcement with His Excellency about the huge Wembley card,” Eddie Hearn said 

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