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Last Updated: Saturday, 10 September 2005, 23:56 GMT 00:56 UK
Brave Calzaghe overcomes Ashira
Evan Ashira and Joe Calzaghe
If my left hand was there I could have kept the pace
Joe Calzaghe
Joe Calzaghe retained his WBO super middleweight title for the 17th time with victory over Kenya's Evans Ashira.

It was far from a routine win for the Welshman who suffered an injury to his left hand in round three, forcing him to use his right for the remainder.

Despite the setback, the 33-year-old was never troubled by Ashira who he battered in the early rounds with some strong combinations.

Calzaghe was taken to 12 rounds and given a 120-108 120-108 120-107 win.

The WBO champion said he was left frustrated after picking up the injury early in the fight.

"I thought I was going to stop him early," said the 33-year-old.

"If my left hand was there I could have kept the pace. Unfortunately it went and I had to out-box him.

"I had to jab my way to victory after four rounds. If my left hand was fine I think he would have pulled out or I'd have knocked him out in four or five rounds."

Calzaghe's promoter Frank Warren said November's fight against IBF champion Jeff Lacy was unlikely to happen.

"I very much doubt that it is going to go on. He is never going to be ready for that so we'll try to rearrange it for next year," said Warren.

"It is frustrating for Joe but these things happen in boxing."


JOE CALZAGHE

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