Lawrence Okolie Defeats Isaac Chamberlain In British Grudge Match

All over the world, big boxing matches took place on February 3 and the United Kingdom had their big fight in a grudge match between two of the top British cruiserweight prospects.

Lawrence Okolie dropped Isaac Chamberlain twice en route to a wide unanimous decision win (98-89, 96-90, 97-89) to win the vacant WBA Continental cruiserweight title at the O2 Arena. The fight had been built up as one between two rising stars in British boxing and Okolie proved his supporters right by knocking down Chamberlain in the first round.

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The rest of the fight was marred by constant holding and general lack of action at various points of the fight. The referee told both fighters to stop holding in the second fight, but Chamberlain did not listen and kept holding to the point he got docked a point for excessive holding. Okolie would then knock down Chamberlain again in the sixth round and that seemed to spell the end of Chamberlain. 

Despite having a big points deficit, Chamberlain did try and increase the pace of the fight, but didn't show anything that could have turned the fight around. The fight continued to have excessive holding as Okolie got a point deducted for excessive holding in the ninth round. The bout went the distance as the crowd, and fans watching the fight, came away highly unimpressed with the fight, with promoter Eddie Hearn saying he was disappointed with Okolie's performance.

Two other regional title fights took place on the card. Ted Cheeseman won the vacant WBA International welterweight title with a unanimous decision win over Carson Jones. Reece Bellotti stopped Ben Jones in the sixth round to retain the Commonwealth featherweight title. That fight was technically a title fight, but Jones could not win the title because he was overweight and ineligible to win the title. 

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