Er­rol Spence con­tin­ues

Un­beaten run, earn­ing Ter­mi­na­tor moniker in wel­ter­weight di­vi­sion of top fighters

CityPress - - Sport - PULE MOKHINE pmokhine@city­press.co.za

Does Er­rol Spence Jr’s en­try into the In­ter­na­tional Box­ing Fed­er­a­tion (IBF) wel­ter­weight king­dom pro­nounce him as the real deal in a di­vi­sion re­garded as an en­clave of top fighters?

The 27-year-old Amer­i­can reg­is­tered his 22nd vic­tory in an un­beaten run as a prized fighter by de­thron­ing the fan­cied English­man Kell Brook in an 11th round stop­page in front of a par­ti­san crowd at Bra­mall Lane Foot­ball Ground in Sh­effield, Eng­land, two weeks ago.

In do­ing so, Spence, who joined the pro­fes­sional ranks in 2012, recorded his 19th stop­page vic­tory in his brief fistic ca­reer.

He also brought to a halt Brook’s reign af­ter 1 015 days as ti­tle­holder.

Spence’s win earned him the moniker “Ter­mi­na­tor” be­cause of his awe­some ring tal­ent.

And his win begs the ques­tion of whether he is the best fighter to so far up­hold the sta­tus of this weight cat­e­gory.

This class has been dom­i­nated by US box­ers and boasted top-class king­pins who ruled with dis­tinc­tion.

Some of them in­clude Floyd “Money” May­weather Jr, Zab Ju­dah, Shawn Porter and Cory Spinks, the son of for­mer world heavy­weight cham­pion Leon.

South Africa’s Isaac “An­gel” Hlatshwayo is also the erst­while king­pin, who de­fended his di­a­dem once when he was cham­pion for 132 days.

Puerto Ri­can Félix Trinidad, who lifted the belt on June 9 1993, stands out as the long­est reign­ing ti­tle­holder, hav­ing been in charge of the crown for 2 449 days. He made 15 suc­cess­ful de­fences (see graphic). This com­par­i­son ex­cludes fighters who fought be­fore Trinidad won the ti­tle.

Can Ter­mi­na­tor add more punch in the league by keep­ing the home fires burn­ing and be­come the di­vi­sion’s best ruler?

He is a quick mover in­side the ring and uses his left jabs and hooks ef­fec­tively to floor his foes.

Spence’s punch­ing power was ev­i­dent when he floored Leonard Bundu in the sixth round in a non­ti­tle scrap in New York in Au­gust.

That was be­fore his ma­jes­tic show­ing against Brook.

Hav­ing been at the IBF helm for 15 days now, Ter­mi­na­tor’s star may rise and en­hance his sta­tus as the gov­ern­ing body’s best wel­ter­weight.

IN­TER­NA­TIONAL BOX­ING FED­ER­A­TION

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