Leigh Wood Scores Thrilling Come From Behind Victory Over Josh Warrington
By Vince D’Writer: After facing adversity for the majority of the first six rounds, the defending champion Leigh Wood closed out the seventh round in spectacular fashion as he stopped Josh Warrington (31-3-1, 8 KOs) to retain his WBA featherweight world title.
(Photo credit: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing)
Coming into the championship bout, some boxing pundits criticized the matchup due to the fact that Warrington was getting a title shot, but in his past four fights, he had a record of 1-2-1. Warrington was out to prove that he belonged in this fight, and he attempted to prove it immediately.
In the opening round of the championship bout, the former two-time IBF world champion Josh Warrington elected to skip the feeling-out process as he came out firing combinations. In the second half of the first round, Wood was able to dictate the pace by landing the southpaw jab to the stomach, followed by the left hand up top.
In the second round, Leigh Wood found his range as he was able to work off the jab and land some solid combinations. In the third round, Josh Warrington turned up the aggression by forcing Wood against the ropes and landing some big hook shots.
In round four, Warrington continued to experience success by focusing his attack to his opponent’s body and finishing the combination up top. Round 5 was more of the same as Warrington was able to have continued success executing his offensive game plan.
After being warned on multiple occasions about punches to the back of the head, the referee called timeout during the opening minute of the seventh round to deduct a point from Josh Warrington.
Prior to the point deduction, Warrington was in complete control of the fight, but things would take a drastic turn for the worse. In the closing seconds of round 7, Wood landed a big right hand followed by a five-punch combination that sent Warrington down to the canvas.
Warrington was able to get up, but he was on wobbled legs as the referee proceeded to waive the fight off. Josh Warrington gave a great effort, but in the end, Leigh Wood was able to score a thrilling come-from-behind TKO victory.
In the post-fight interview, Warrington admitted he was caught with a good shot, but he felt as though the stoppage was premature. The bell to end the round had sounded, and Warrington was able to make it to his feet at the count of eight, but the referee still decided to waive the fight off.
Leigh Wood (28-3, 17 KOs) had to come from behind to successfully defend his title, but his days as the WBA featherweight champion may still be numbered. Prior to the fight, Wood admitted having trouble making the 126-pound limit, and due to his struggles, it is expected that he will move up to super-featherweight for his next fight.