Canelo Stuns Kovalev in Light-Heavyweight Debut

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Image Credit- CBS Sports

Four years ago, Canelo Alvarez lost his WBA, WBC and The Ring light middleweight titles to the legendary Floyd Mayweather Jr. In the four years since that loss, Mexico’s star boxer has almost replicated his former opponent’s success. Two years later in 2015, he claimed his WBC and The Ring light middleweight titles, in addition to the Lineal title by defeating Miguel Cotto in what was a unanimous decision.

In 2016 he moved up to the Middleweight category following several light Middleweight title defences. After claiming victory against hard-hitting Kazakh title holder Gennady Golovkin, he moved up to super-middleweight, defeating another British contender Rocky Fielding to win the WBA (Regular) title in that division.

This chain of events led to Canelo moving up yet another weight division to Light-heavyweight, meaning he would challenge Russian veteran “the Krusher” Sergey Kovalev on Saturday 2nd November. The fight started off slowly, with the boxers finding their range and using their jabs to size each other up. The majority of the fight was extremely close, with neither fighter showing any noticeable signs of dominance. 

Some rounds could have been edged towards Kovalev, whilst others were taken by Canelo – and some were so close it was almost impossible to make any judgement at all.

It appeared that this would be a 12 round decision win for Canelo, who was leading by a small margin on the judges scorecards. However, in the 11th round, both fighters suddenly became much more aggressive, and Canelo hit the Russian champion with a hard left hook which stunned him and knocked him off balance, followed by a strong right cross which dropped him to the floor. As Kovalev collapsed into the ropes the referee stepped in and called an end to the fight, awarded the win and the WBO light-heavyweight title to Canelo.

This has made Canelo a four weight division champion, one more championship away from the record of his former opponent Floyd Mayweather Jr.

His next move is uncertain – there are rumours of him moving up yet again to cruiserweight, but the possibility of a third middleweight bout against Golovkin is also on the cards. Regardless, this fight showed that Mexico’s star boxer will be makingwaves in the sport for some time to come.