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Edwards outpoints Ojuederie to retain Southern area cruiserweight crown


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http://static.boxrec.com/wiki/d/d2/EdwardsOjuederie.jpgCrayford cruiser Menay 'The Emperor' Edwards (12-2) retained his Southern Area title after outpointing Watford's JJ Ojuederie (14-10-1) by 97-94 - for the second consecutive time at the York Hall.

The pair's first meeting back in June was a bad tempered affair, considered close enough to warrant an immediate rematch. Ojuederie's slightly more orthodox boxing style was better at distance, but Edwards close range industry and workrate got the nod from Jeff Hinds. Tonight was no different with referee Robert Williams scoring.

Ojuederie (14st 2lbs 8oz) did well to keep Edwards (14st 2lbs 3oz) under control in the opening rounds, which were close. The second session featured some wild exchanges in the middle of the ring, and by the third, Ojuederie's more aesthetically pleasing work and effective jab were perhaps edging it.

Edwards' jerky forward movement can be difficult to interpret. The Watford fighter was doing a good job of this, but began to be outworked by swinging hooks to the body launched by Edwards at close range. In the fourth, a nasty swelling had appeared under Ojuederie's right eye and for a while it looked as if he might have difficulty seeing some of the shots coming in, especially as he continued with a low guard, but the ringside doctor was unconcerned and work from Dean Powell in Ojuederie's corner kept the swelling under control.

Although Edwards' own jab fell short on occassion, and good movement from Ojuederie at times made him look a little clumsy, Edwards was landing more to the body and was applying pressure that kept Ojuederie on the ropes for extended periods. Ojuederie's responses were eye catching and accurate, but not frequent enough to secure many of the latter rounds as Edwards efforts seemed to increase in the final minute of each. A couple of flurried right hands in the closer caught Ojuederie and forced him to hold, and the brisk pace was maintained throughout.

Robert Williams scored 97-94 for Edwards. BoxRec News had it 97-93. Potentially, there's some big fights for Edwards in a cruiserweight division that is wide open.

Picture by Bernard Miller. Full undercard report to follow




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