FRANK BUGLIONI clung on to his British gentle heavyweight title after he was taken the gap by harmful Craig ‘Spider’ Richards.
Richards was a late substitute for Buglioni’s injured authentic opponent and solely obtained the combat after bumping into promoter Eddie Hearn by likelihood at Stanstead airport.
Buglioni – generally known as the Clever Man – was on the entrance foot from the primary bell and in search of heavy pictures whereas Richards hoping to counter.
Within the second spherical Buglioni actually tagged the challenger, pinning him on the ropes and whacking away.
Richards had his household ringside screaming his arachnid nickname however they’d not have been impressed with the sneaky headbutt he was warned about within the second.
Richards regarded at risk inside the primary six minutes however he took over within the third and shook Buglioni with a variety of punches and at one stage it regarded just like the champ’s legs had abandoned him.
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Buglioni, 28, was relentlessly marching forward and throwing combos while Richards dropped his hands and tried to catch his man with single shots from odd angles.
Both fighters – who have sharing shared dozens of rounds sparring and spoke respectfully of each other in the build-up – enjoyed success as the dominance swung between them after
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But the exchanges were brutal and it looked like a bitter grudge match with both men going willingly to the trenches.
The rugged good looks that landed Buglioni modelling deals early on in his career were in danger from some of the spiteful digs Richards was occasionally landing.
And Richards’ looks also took a battering, especially in round nine, when the braids in his hair started to unravel thanks to Buglioni’s barrage.
And at the start of round 10, Buglioni perversely greeted his rival in the middle of the ring with a wink before setting upon him again.
Rising light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde wants Buglioni’s belt and he would have loved watching the champ grinding away into the championship rounds and struggling to finish Richards who was only in his 11th fight.
Buglioni admitted it was his 23-fight education that earned him 21st win over his greener rival, he said: “It came down to experience, I was just a little bit cuter.
“He took massive right hands and stiff body shots so credit to him”
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And the when the final bell went, with Richards once again pinned on the ropes and under a hail of punches, both men burst into warped smiles and went from battering each other to hugging like long-lost lovers.
Two judges gave Buglioni the win on 117-111 with the third seeing it slightly closer with a card of 116-113.