Crolla vs Barroso was expected to produce fireworks, and the Manchester Arena headliner certainly delivered on its promise. Anthony Crolla successfully defended his WBA Lightweight title against Ismael Barroso, taking out his ferocious foe in the 7th round. Crolla now improves to 31 wins, 4 defeats, 3 draws, 12 knockouts, while Barroso picks up his first career setback, returning to Venezuela with 19 wins, 1 defeat, 2 draws, 18 knockouts.
After a quiet opener, Barroso made his intentions crystal clear by flying out the gate and unleashing venomous combinations to the head and body. Crolla maintained great composure and a tight defense while under fire, and began finding the target with singular blows which kept him in the fight. Crolla started to find more success in the 4th round during exchanges, suffered a cut over his right eye, but was about to drastically turn the tables.
Following some ripping body shots from Crolla in the 5th, Barroso’s willingness to trade blows faded, as did his power while he entered reverse gear for the first time in the fight. Crolla knew Barroso was wilting physically and falling apart mentally, and made one hell of a statement in the 6th. Barroso was troubled several times courtesy of a Crolla right hand, snapping jab, and of course, ever increasing punches to the mid-section.
Barroso, who had never been beyond six rounds as a pro, was being systematically broken down by Crolla, and soon a sickening body shot to the abdomen in the 7th knocked down Barroso for the first and last time. Barroso was swamped in all kinds of agony and unable to beat the ten-count, which sent the Manchester crowd into a roaring frenzy as hometown hero Crolla entered celebrations.
Considering Barroso was regarded as a nightmare first title defense, you’ve really got to hand it to Crolla for stepping up to the plate and pulling off a fantastic achievement here. Excellent patience and discipline throughout, educated pressure, and some of the best body punching you’ll see in a boxing ring. Following this performance, Crolla’s name will no doubt travel even further, with bigger nights yet to come in 2016. Domestic scraps with WBO champ Terry Flanagan could be on the horizon, as could meetings with other Top 10 Lightweights such as division-leaders Dejan Zlaticanin and WBC title holder Jorge Linares.
Crolla vs Barroso Undercard Results
Hosea Burton beats Michal Ludwiczak via TKO 4 – Light Heavyweight
Shayne Singleton beats Adil Anwar via TKO 8 – Welterweight
Tommy Coyle beats Reynaldo Mora via PTS 6 (59-55) – Lightweight
Martin Murray beats Cedric Spera via TKO 2 – Super Middleweight
Paul Smith beats Bronislav Kubin via TKO 3 – Super Middleweight
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