Monday, October 02, 2023  |


David Benavidez dominates gritty Ronald Gavril to lopsided decision

David Benavidez tees off on Rondal Gavril. Photo by Stephanie Trapp/ SHOWTIME
Fighters Network

David Benavidez retained his WBC super middleweight title with one-sided unanimous decision over ridiculously tough and brave Ronald Gavril on Saturday in Las Vegas in a rematch of his record-breaking title-winning effort last September.

Benavidez (20-0, 17 knockouts) won by scores of 120-108 (twice) and 119-109.

Gavril (18-3, 14 KOs), a 31-year-old Romanian fighter based in Las Vegas, put forth a gritty performance in their first bout — good enough to prompt the WBC to call for an immediate rematch — and he was hard as nails on Saturday, too. But Benavidez, who became the youngest 168-pound titleholder ever at age 20 (he’s now 21), obviously grew from the experience and looked much better during the return bout.

The Phoenix, Arizona native dominated Gavril with his jab and punished the Romanian with uppercuts, body shots and rapid-fire combinations.

Gavril, who was wobbled into the ropes by an uppercut-hook combination in Round 4, was able to land jabs and straight rights to Benaviedz’s body and occasionally position the younger man to the ropes, but he was unable to impose his will on the defending beltholder. He had to settle for going the distance in a high-volume battle with the youngest world titleholder in boxing, and showing spirit in the final round.

A full ringside report from Andreas Hale will be posted later.