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Andy Lee wins WBO middleweight world title

The Irish fighter stopped his opponent Matt Korobov

Andy Lee is Ireland's latest world champion.
Andy Lee is Ireland's latest world champion.
Image: ©Russell Pritchard/Presseye

ANDY LEE LAST night became the WBO middleweight champion of the world with a sixth round stoppage of Matt Korobov in Las Vegas.

Lee, who became the first Irish middleweight since Steve Collins 20 years ago to claim a world title, was on the back foot early with Korobov just shading the tense opening rounds.

However, the Russian never looked like inflicting serious damage on Lee before the Limerick man fired a vicious right hook in the sixth round.

With Korobov faltering, the 30-year old unleashed a flurry of punches giving referee Kenny Bayliss little choice but to stop the fight, handing Lee the title.

Source: HBOsports/YouTube

It was an emotional victory for Lee who spent almost his entire career under the guidance of Emanuel Steward before the legendary trainer died in October 2012.

“When I thought about this moment, I had a speech in mind,” Lee said after the bout.

“I would like to say thank you to my manager [and trainer Adam Booth], who has done so much for me over the last couple of years, but it’s also for the man who made me, Emanuel Steward.

“We spent seven, eight years together and he said I would win a world title. His wife, Marie, came here today, flew all the way from Detroit, so from everybody from Detroit and Kronk [Gym], thank you very much. Matt Korobov was giving me nightmares but I could hear all the cheers from all that came to see me from New York and Detroit.”

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And next up for Lee, a visit home:

“I am a champion now and I want to defend my belt in Ireland.”

World at his fingertips: Limerick’s Andy Lee hoping to hit title jackpot in Vegas

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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