Burnett outpoints Haskins to win IBF bantamweight title
Ryan Burnett (17-0, 9 KOs) captured the IBF bantamweight title when he defeated defending champion Lee Haskins (34-4, 14 KOs) on Saturday night at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
The Northern Irishman floored Haskins twice on the way to a points victory, despite a shocking scorecard from American judge Clark Sammartino, who scored the fight 118-108 in favor of Haskins.
It looks like Sammartino may have got the fighters names mixed up because there was no doubt Burnett won the fight. Fortunately the other two judges scored it 119-107 for the unbeaten challenger.
Burnett dominated the action from the start with his fast attacks and good movement.
An accidental clash of heads in the second round left both boxers cut, although Burnett came off worse, with a long gash down his forehead.
There were many head clashes in this fight. A common problem when orthodox (Burnett) meets southpaw (Haskins).
The Belfast boxer kept his composure and continued to get better of Haskins, who was struggling to time Burnett's right hands.
Worse was to come for the Englishman in the sixth when he appeared to injure his right arm before being dropped by a right hook.
Haskins recovered and tried to fire back with left hands but he was mostly beaten to the punch by Burnett, who knocked down the champion again with more hard shots in the 11th. Burnett looked close to scoring the stoppage but Haskins' bravery and toughness got him to the final bell.
"I always knew I would be a world champion although I had to dig deep," said Burnett.
"Haskins made me work but I did it. I'm the champion of the world."