Fabio Wardley knocked out David Adeleye on Saturday night to defend his British heavyweight title and extend his professional record to a perfect 17 wins from 17 fights.
The pair had engaged in a war of words leading up to the bout, and the action inside the ring certainly reflected the animosity between the two rising prospects.
As the fight wore on it was Wardley who was consistently landing the bigger power punches, and he punished his opponent with a lancing jab that left Adeleye’s eye swollen.
In the seventh round Wardley landed a right-hand left-hook that dropped Adeleye, leaving the previously undefeated fighter slumped against the ropes.
Fabio Wardley defeated David Adeleye in their grudge match in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
The British heavyweight champion dropped Adeleye with a clubbing combination in the seventh-round
Adeleye returned to his feet but the referee stepped in to stop the fight shortly after
Despite the crushing blow, Adeleye smiled and stuck his blood-red tongue out before rising to his feet in time to meet the referee’s count.
Wardley immediately resumed the onslaught, delivering a series of punches against the ropes that left Adeleye stumbling and caused the referee to intervene, bringing an end to the fight by TKO.
Clearly unhappy with the referee’s decision, Adeleye immediately protested, pushing him away before punching him in the body, a move that could well result in sanctions against the heavyweight.
Despite the bad blood before the fight, that even ignited into a brawl during a press conference last month, the two fighters appeared to share some respectful words before Wardley was officially announced as the winner.