By Tom Hatheway: Wladimir Klitschko, 238 unified the IBF and WBO heavyweight titles with a methodical unanimous 12-round decision tonight over Sultan Ibragimov, 219, in New York’s Madison Square Garden. Ibragimov controlled the first two rounds by being the busier fighter as Klitschko was content to use his jab as a range finder on his opponent..
Klitschko was able to start controlling the action with his jab from round three until the end of the bout. The eighth round was a good round as both fighters landed some nice shots. Round nine was huge for Wladimir, 50-4 (44), as he landed a nice 4 punch salvo that sent Sultan, 22-1-1 (17) in to the ropes that surely would have been a knockdown if they had not kept him on his feet.
Both fighters seemed fairly ineffective from round 10 onwards with Ibragimov clinching and Klitschko jabbing, and controlling the action. I had the score 118-110. The Referee’s scorecards were: 119-110, 117-111, and 118-110.
In world title fights Klitschko is now 11-2 (9), while Ibragimov dips to 2-1 (0). Up next for Wladimir could be a mandatory defense later this spring as his brother Vital has his sights set on the winner of the March 8 title bout between Sam Peter and Oleg Maskaev; assuming Vital doesn’t become mysteriously ‘injured’ again.