Britain’s Lawrence Okolie retains his WBO cruiserweight title after winning the unanimous points decision over Michal Cieslaka at the O2 Arena
- Lawrence Okolie’s fight with Michal Cieslak won’t go down in the history books
- It was a scrappy affair at the O2 on Sunday night, but Okolie got the job done
- The judges scored the main bout 117-110, 116-111, 115-112 in favor of Okolie
- As a result, 29-year-old Okolie defended his WBO cruiserweight title for the second time
- Meanwhile, Campbell Hatton – son of Ricky Hatton – won his sixth professional fight
Lawrence Okolie successfully defended his WBO world heavyweight title after defeating Poland’s Michal Cieslak at the O2 Arena on Sunday night.
It was the first time Okolie had gone the full distance in his professional career – having picked up wins over Glowacki and Prasovic early on.
However, Okolie still managed to get the job done with the judges scoring the fight 117-110, 116-111, 115-112 in his favor on Sunday night.
Lawrence Okolie (left) defeated Poland’s Michal Cieslak (right) on Sunday night at the O2 Arena
It was a scrappy affair, but Okolie managed to win by unanimous points decision
Nonetheless, it was a scrappy affair as the pair went the distance in 12 rounds. The referee was forced to intervene on several occasions as he continuously engaged in clinches and threw wayward punches.
However, Okolie used her extra three inches of reach to land some big punches early on. The British boxer even knocked down Cieslak in the fifth round and made his opponent bleed in the sixth.
But, Cieslak – who was backed by a large Polish contingent inside the O2 Arena – survived the early onslaught to take the fight from distance.
However, he got tired in the last two rounds – showing poor discipline by throwing a number of punches to the back of Okolie’s head.
However, Okolie delivered devastating blows during the fight which lasted far
He even managed to knock Cieslak down in the fifth round with a hard punch (above)
Nonetheless, Okolie, who was back in the ring for the first time since defeating Prasovic in Anthony Joshua’s loss to Oleksandr Usyk in September, topped the scoring to successfully defend his title for a second time.
Speaking after the fight, Okolie said, “It was a pretty flat performance. My physical condition was good, but I let it get messy.
“It was one of those days where it was difficult, awkward and the guy was physically strong, but I have to work on the mentality that it doesn’t have to be perfect.
“I’ll go back to the gym, I’ll go back and I’ll do well next time.”
Cieslak also returns to his corner in round six with bloody drops from his ear
However, the referee was forced to intervene on several occasions as they continuously engaged in clinches and threw wayward punches.
Asked about his next fight, Okolie added, “I’ll probably have one in heavyweight and then I’ll come back down (in heavyweight) for a unification.”
Earlier, Galal Yafai won on his professional debut after stopping Mexican Carlos Vado Bautista in the fifth round to win the WBC International title.
Yafai, 29, who won Olympic flyweight gold for Britain at the Tokyo Olympics last summer, delivered a composed and authoritative display to force his opponent’s corner to throw in the towel.
Campbell Hatton, son of Ricky Hatton, won his sixth professional fight with a sixth-round stoppage of Joe Ducker.
Scroll down to relive this action as it happened with CHARLOTTE DALY’s live coverage of the fight, including turn-by-turn updates and reactions.