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Last Updated: Sunday, 5 March 2006, 03:22 GMT
Dazzling Calzaghe unifies titles
Jeff Lacy tumbles to the canvas under a Joe Calzaghe onslaught
Calzaghe put Lacy on the deck for the first time in his career
Joe Calzaghe confirmed himself as a fighter of the very highest calibre with a stunning demolition of American Jeff Lacy in Manchester.

Calzaghe out-boxed Lacy throughout as he claimed a unanimous points decision and unified the WBO and IBF super middleweight titles in the process.

Calzaghe had promised to "dance" his way to victory and he had far too much class for his American opponent.

Two judges scored the bout 119-107 while the other scored it 119-105.

Calzaghe was expected to have a greater work rate and more speed than the squat figure of Lacy and he started the quicker of the two fighters.

The Welshman threw many more punches in the first round and landed several sweet combinations, while Lacy countered with the occasional solid blow.

The second round followed the same pattern, with Calzaghe using the ring and moving his opponent around, although he was not afraid to stand and trade blows on occasion.

At the start of the third Calzaghe found himself trapped in the corner but he held his own as both fighters traded punches on the inside.

The stylish Welsh boxer then spun his man and as the round went on Calzaghe landed punches at will, while Lacy struggled to connect.

Lacy was cut under his right eye after a minute of the fourth round and the American endured a torrid time as Calzaghe continued to dance around his opponent before landing with flurries of punches.

The taller, more mobile Calzaghe was well on top and by the end of the fifth round he had his hands by his side as he invited Lacy to try and catch him before beating the American to the punch.

He's a world-class fighter and I think I won every single round
Joe Calzaghe

In the sixth Calzaghe landed a blizzard of 10 unanswered blows as he ended the first half of the fight looking likely to have won all six rounds.

Lacy offered a little more at the start of the seventh but Calzaghe ended the round with a couple of clubbing lefts which had the American - who had never been on the deck - rocking against the ropes.

The eighth was more even until Calzaghe finished it with another flurry of punches and although Lacy landed a solid left in the ninth Calzaghe rocked the American time and again.

By this point Lacy was covered in his own blood and he struggled to survive the 10th and 11th rounds.

Calzaghe was docked a point in the 11th by the referee for a backhander but it made no difference and the Welsh fighter dominated the 12th and final round.

With a minute gone he put Lacy on the canvas for the first time in his career and although the American got back to his feet and made it through the fight, there was no doubt he was a beaten man.





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