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Dunne stops Cordoba in 11

21
Mar

Popular Irish standout Bernard Dunne got off the canvas to score a dramatic 11th-round knockout of highly rated junior featherweight contender Ricardo Cordoba to win the WBA's “regular” 122-pound title in a brutal fight of the year candidate in front of a wildly enthusiastic crowd in Dublin, Ireland on Saturday.

Dunne (28-1, 15 knockouts), only three fights removed from a first-round KO loss, dropped the southpaw titleholder with a hook in the third round, but Cordoba, who is rated No. 7 by THE RING, came back to score two hard knockdowns of his own in the fifth round.

With the support of the capacity crowd in the O2 Arena, a battered and bloody Dunne sucked it up and fought back well against the stronger and sharper Cordoba in rounds six and seven, before soundly winning the eighth driving the Irish fans crazy.

Cordoba (34-2-2, 21 KOs), who owns a victory over pound-for-pound-rated Celestino Caballero, came back in the ninth and 10th, where he had Dunne bleeding and reeling for most of the round.

However, Dunne caught Cordoba with a shot at the end of the 10th that sent the Panamanian back to his corner on unsteady legs.

Dunne exploded back into the fight by landing a monster hook that dropped Cordoba at the start of the 11th round. Cordoba beat the count, but got up on rubbery legs and was dropped twice more in brutal fashion before the fight was waved off.

Cordoba was taken out of the ring on a stretcher but early reports from Ireland are that the former titleholder is fine and was hospitalized for precautionary measures.

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