WBA super middleweight champion Mikkel Kessler (42-1, 32 KOs) successfully defended his title for second time with the fourth-round TKO over mandatory challenger WBA #1 Gusmyr Perdomo (16-3, 10 KOs) on Saturday night at the MCH Messecenter Herning in Herning, Denmark.
The local hero started the fight patiently not throwing too many punches, preserving energy for future action. Oppositely, tall southpaw Perdomo was active but his wide hooks were hitting the empty space, not Kessler. The second round was almost the same, as the champion continued his measured pressure, taking zero punches to land one in return.
In the third, supported by the partizan crowd the Dane finally began to punch and Perdomo definitely felt his strength. He was able to avoid punishment near the ropes in the midst of the stanza but was caught with a picture-perfect left-right and went down with seconds left. Kessler was credited with a knockdown by referee Russell Mora, but the instant replay proved it was caused by a powerful punch to the shoulder, not to the head, and Perdomo’s unbalanced stance.
The end suddenly came early into the fourth round. Kessler landed another left-right, and Perdomo was staggered and pinned to the ropes. The champion went in for kill but never tagged his foe cleanly, except for the last right hand. However, the referee stepped in at 0:56 of the round to halt the contest on what seemed to be an early stoppage. Perdomo wasn’t down and was still avoiding punches although clearly hurt. Nevertheless, a good win for Mikkel Kessler, who is awaiting Andre Ward to do his job several hours later.
WBA female welterweight champion Cecilia “The First Lady” Braekhus (13-0, 2 KOs) from Norway kept her unbeaten record intact and defended her regalia for the second time with a workmanlike ten-round unanimous decision over fellow undefeated (now 13-1 with 6 KOs) German-based Italian Lucia Morelli. The champion utilized her superior technique and boxing wisdom to outmaneuver physically stronger but slower and raw challenger. Braekhus was better with her jab, adding hard right hands on the occasion. Morelli, however, enjoyed some success early on, when she was able to tag the Norse boxer a few times. On the other hand, Morelli got fatigued down the strecth especially since the sixth round, as she was boxing over this limit for the first time in her career. Braekhus controlled the rest of the fight but neither she, nor her opponent was ever close to stop each other inside the distance. At the end, all three judges saw it unanimously 99-91, 98-92 and 97-93 for the defending champ.