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Boxing | International

Purdy takes long shot at title



It is a long shot but another British boxer will try to win an important title this weekend.

Lee Purdy, a replacement for Kell Brook, will challenge IBF welterweight champion Devon Alexander in Atlantic City on Saturday night.

Alexander, who is from Saint Louis in Missouri, is set to make the first defence of his belt when he meets the 25-year-old Purdy, a former British and current IBF international champion, at the Boardwalk Hall.

Purdy, from Colchester in England, has taken the place of Brook, who is rated No 1 by the IBF but has foot and ankle problems.

Purdy won three fights last year to push his record to 20 victories, including 13 knockouts, three defeats and a draw. He beat Adnar Amar (25-1), Chris Johnson (16-3) and Gunersindo Lucas Carrasco (16-0).

In March this year he stopped veteran Cosme Rivera (35-15-3) in the ninth round despite having problems to make the weight.

Alexander, a 26-year-old southpaw, won the vacant WBC junior welterweight title in August 2009 when he stopped Junior Witter in the ninth round. He also won the IBF belt by stopping Juan Urango in the eighth round.

He retained both titles against Andriy Kotelnik but then lost them to Timothy Bradley in January 2011. In October last year he moved up to welterweight and outpointed veteran Randall Bailey to take over the IBF welterweight title.

The American could well beat fourth-ranked Purdy inside the distance.

31 KNOCKOUTS IN 33 FIGHTS

On the undercard, WBC interim light-welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse faces IBF light-welterweight champion Lamont Peterson in a non-title ten-rounder at a maximum weight of 63.95 kg.

Matthysse, 30, is from Argentina and Peterson, 29, from the United States.

Matthysse has an outstanding knockout record. He has won 31 of his 33 fights inside the distance and has lost only twice, both times on split decisions, against Zab Judah and Devon Alexander.

Peterson’s record stands at 31-1, with 16 shortcut wins. His only loss was in December 2009 Timothy Bradley beat him on points.

It could be an entertaining fight; one for the connoisseurs.



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