In a pretty wild heavyweight affair, Daniel Dubois overcame no less than three trips to the canvas in the opening round of his encounter with Kevin Lerena on tonight’s Fury-Chisora card at Tottenham. Defending his “regular” WBA heavyweight strap, Dubois looked to be on the way to an upset loss. Thrice Dubois went down in the opening session, twice when Lerena had not landed a shot. It was apparent Dubois had injured either his knee or his ankle, perhaps both.
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Dubois dug in and, though compromised, he got the stoppage in the third round. A big Dubois right hand dropped the South African, who was clearly hurt. Lerena got back up, but Dubois resumed his attack, and referee Howard Foster decided he had seen enough, and he stopped the fight, this at the bell to end the round. Dubois is now 19-1(18). Lerena, who really did look to be on the way to scoring a momentous upset, falls to 28-2(14).
Dubois came out looking to land his jab in the opening round, with Lerena looking to feel his way into the fight. Then, with Lerena landing a right hand to the top of the head, Dubois went down. And then Dubois went down again, and then he went down for the third time. It was obvious there was something wrong with Dubois. Dubois suffered a leg injury due to the way he was forced to overextend his leg at the time of the first knockdown.
Lerena surprisingly took his own foot off the gas in round two, this when Dubois was having so much trouble putting anything behind his shots, his leg in bad shape. But to Dubois’ credit, he fought on when hurt and in bad shape as far as his balance was concerned. And then Dubois’ raw punching power saved the fight for him in the third, when he landed his short, heavy right hand. Lerena showed heart in getting back up, but he took some hefty punches during Dubois’ follow-up attack.
Some fans feel the stoppage was premature and that Lerena should have been allowed to come out for the fourth round. Whatever you think, it’s clear Dubois survived one almighty scare tonight!