Anthony Yard and Daniel Dubois remain unbeaten
By John J. Raspanti
Anthony Yarde moved closer to a shot at WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev’s world title by stopping Travis Reeves in five rounds at the historic Royal Albert Hall in Kennington, London, Friday night.
Yarde (18-0, 17 KOs) was calm and cool in the opening round. He popped his jab and waited to land a big shot. Reeves, more boxer than puncher, moved around the ring. He feinted and tried to keep the muscular Yarde off balance. Yarde,27, landed a good combination to the head and body. Reeves,38, came back with a right that caused Yarde to blink.
Reeves, from Baltimre, Maryland, fired a double jab in round two. A solid right by Yarde caused Reeves to hold on. Reeves tried to fight back, but was overpowered by Yarde’s blows. Reeves stabbed Yarde with a left, but ate another right.
In rounds three and four, Reeves connected with a couple of good rights. Yarde went to the body, and followed with a couple of combinations. Reeves scored with a right, but Yarde landed a crisp uppercut and solid left hook. Reeves was showing guts, but Yarde was slowly breaking him down.
Yarde started round five like he had a cab to catch. He jumped on his man and let let his hands go-landing eight consecutive shots to the chin until the referee jumped in and saved a wobbly Reeves.
The time was 48 seconds into round five.
“I believe every fight is a statement,” said Yarde in the ring. “I’m learning on the job. My performances are speaking for themselves.”
Earlier in the evening, heavyweight prospect Daniel Dubois (10-0, 9 KOs) scored a statement victory by impressively stopping former title challenger Razvan Cojanu (16-6, 9 KOs) in the second round.
Dubois came out punching in the opening stanza, cracking Cojanu with combinations. Canjanu, who lost a decision to then-WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker two years ago, hung in and fought back. The aggressive DuBois connected with an uppercut and chopping right in round two.
A few seconds later, Dubois forced Canjanu into the ropes an unleashed a combination of blows, punctuated by a left hook-right hand that deposited Canjanu on his back. The big man struggled to beat the count, but couldn’t make it.
The time was 2:48 seconds into the second round.
“I was expecting a knockout,” said a smiling Dubois after the fight. “I had trained hard. Hard work pays off.”
With the win, the 21-year-old Dubois picked up the vacant WBO European heavyweight title.