Boxing: Bendall outclassed in title fight

Steven Bendall lost his challenge for the European middleweight title against Sebastian Sylvester at the SAP-Arena in Mannheim, Germany, on Saturday.

Bendall was on his feet but not throwing any punches back when he was rescued by the referee in round three of a fight that he accepted at late notice last Wednesday.

After a cautious opening round, the German champion took control in round two and in round three a short right uppercut forced the referee to give Bendall a standing eight count. A few seconds and about 12 punches later it was over and Bendall lost for just the second time in 26 fights.

In the main event in front of more than 14,000 people, Ukraine's Vladimir Klitschko won the International Boxing Federation heavyweight title with a one-sided seventh-round stoppage of the American Chris Byrd. The pair first met in 2000 when Klitschko won over 12 rounds to become World Boxing Organisation heavyweight champion in a fight that was close: but Saturday was a massacre.

In his last fight, Klitschko survived two knockdowns when winning a dull affair against Samuel Peter, but he was too good for Byrd.

Damaen Kelly, who lost a disgraceful decision in a European title fight on Friday night in Belfast, will lobby the British Boxing Board of Control to try to get a re-match with Italian champion Simone Maludrotto. "Damaen deserves justice," said the Belfast boxer's manager, Tommy Gilmour.

* Scottish boxer Scott Harrison was arrested after being involved in an incident in a pub, police said yesterday. Harrison was one of three men arrested after a fight at the Counting House pub in Glasgow on Saturday. All three were taken to a police station for questioning. Police did not indicate charges, but said the men will appear at the city's sheriff court today.

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