Schwer stands firm

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The Independent Online

Billy Schwer turned up the power to retain his Commonwealth lightweight title in the eighth round at the Royal Albert Hall on Saturday night.

His challenger, Ditau Molefyane, was counted out by the referee after raising both gloves to suggest he had taken enough. Molefyane had been caught by a right upper-cut moments before, and Schwer made sure by running in a right to the body which sent the South African tumbling through the ropes.

When Molefyane pulled himself back, the referee took his count to 10, the 30-year-old challenger bleeding heavily from the nose and and with no way back into the fight.

Schwer had floored Molefyane in the sixth round, opening the way with a right cross and sending his man down for a count of eight. Molefyane fought back and was giving as good as he was receiving at the end of the best session of the fight.

Initially, it seemed as if Molefyane had come to survive, not wishing to get too heavily involved with such a sharp puncher as Schwer. However, Molefyane began to get more ambitious and had some success with his long- range punches, although the champion was never put out of his stride.

Schwer is the official leading contender for the European title held by France's Angel Mona, and victory over him would put Schwer well back into the world championship reckoning.

"I wasn't at my best, the razor sharpness wasn't there, but I was just glad to win," Schwer said. "I was delighted to get this one out of the way because I hadn't had a fight for four months. The European title is the big one and then hopefully another go at a world championship."