Despite being a heavy underdog, Rob Brant promised he would defeat Ryota Murata and win his first world title.
Taking what he learned from his first pro loss last year, Brant dominated Murata on the scorecards to win a wide unanimous decision to capture the WBA “regular” middleweight title. Murata won with scores of 119-109, 119-109 and 118-110.
It was a completely dominant performance by Brant, who would throw more than 1,200 punches in the fight. Brant quickly busted up the now-former champion’s right eye and Murata toughed it out, but provided little offense in the fight. Murata, making his second title defense, only landed 180 punches throughout the 12 rounds.
Murata’s loss also may have possibly taken him out of the biggest payday of his career in 2019. There were talks of having Murata face off against Gennady Golovkin in Japan next year, provided that Murata retains his title next year. With Murata losing, his immediate future is now a mystery, but what is certain is that Murata will likely not get him a superfight against Golovkin at the Tokyo Dome. Murata won the title a year when he defeated Hassan N'Dam in Japan.
Brant, who came in to the fight as the mandatory challenger to the secondary world title, lost his first fight in last year’s World Boxing Super Series super middleweight quarterfinals against Juergen Braehmer. As the WBA “regular” champion, Brant now joins unified WBA “super” and WBC champion Canelo Alvarez and WBO titleholder Demetrius Andrade as middleweight world champions.