At the Manchester Arena, England, Terry Flanagan outboxed Petr Petrov en route to a Unanimous Decision. Scorecards came in at 116-112, 120-108 and 118-110 for the unbeaten hometown hero, who made the third defense of his WBO Lightweight title. Boxing Base saw a similar tale, comfortably tallying the 12-rounder 118-110.
Flanagan, who rises to 33 wins, 13 knockouts, could now be targeting a career-defining clash with a big 135-pound name like Jorge Linares (as mentioned post-fight by promoter Frank Warren). Meanwhile, the fallen Petrov returns to Madrid with 38 wins, 5 defeats, 2 draws, 19 knockouts on the slate.
The fight itself was no barnburner, but once again showcased Flanagan’s sharp fundamentals and clean, textbook boxing abilities. It’s still unclear how highly Flanagan should be regarded on the world stage, and, whether there’s really any more dimensions in his game to be seen.
Flanagan holds a piece of the Lightweight crown, sure, but how will he fare against a legitimate, world-class threat residing within the Top 10? That table is fairly deep through numbers 10 to 3, and is ruled by formidable champions Mikey Garcia and the aforementioned Linares. Maybe Flanagan has what it takes to rule at 135-pounds. Maybe he doesn’t. We just won’t know till we know.
As for Petrov, he deserves a good deal of praise for his defiant performance tonight. He was highly durable, certainly came with high ambitions, and landed some eye-catching blows on occasion. But Petrov was the second best man, without question, getting peppered and clipped by straight shots from the savvier fighter. Distance control and footwork was utilized well by Flanagan, and it allowed him to play general.
Flanagan vs Petrov: Undercard
- Former Junior Middleweight champ Liam Smith (25-1-1, 13 KO) had his hands full with Liam Williams (16-1-1, 11 KO) in their controversial appetizer, which saw all three judges sitting on 86-85 (Williams) at the close of the 9th. The fight itself was competitive and absorbing, but will now be remembered for its ugly cuts, even uglier scoring, and unjust conclusion. Smith barely escaped with the win after an accidental head clash saw Williams’ corner pull out their fighter due to a nasty eyelid gash. Smith, who also suffered a nasty cut (from a clean punch) earlier in the fight, was arguably a few rounds behind at the time of the stoppage. So why the controversy? Well, in short, the scorecards seemed way off. More importantly, this fight should have gone to a Technical Decision, which Williams’ corner really should have fought for before halting the action themselves. What’s done is done. But there’s definitely a call for a rematch.
- Jack Catterall (18-0, 10 KO) had zero problems decrypting and destroying domestic veteran Martin Gethin (28-9-1, 12 KO). The Junior Welterweight affair was short-lived, with Catterall dropping his overmatched foe twice en route to a 3rd round knockout.
- Junior Middleweight Jimmy Kelly (21-1, 8 KO) secured his first notable win since being stopped by Liam Smith in 2015. Kelly’s opponent Rick Godding (23-2-1, 3 KO) proved himself more than worthy of sharing the ring tonight, however, losing only by a razor-thin margin of 96-95.
- Nicola Adams (1-0, 0 KO) scored a landslide victory in her Flyweight pro debut, beating Virginia Noemi Carcamo (4-3-1, 0 KO) on a 40-36 scorecard.
Give us your take on Flanagan vs Petrov, the controversial Smith vs Williams, plus the rest of the Manchester action.