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Last Updated: Saturday, 14 July 2007, 22:49 GMT 23:49 UK
Duddy grafts to stoppage victory
John Duddy (right) took some punishment in Saturday's bout
Alessio Furlan lands a blow on John Duddy (right) in Dublin
Unbeaten Derry boxer John Duddy claimed a 10th-round stoppage win over Italian journeyman Alessio Furlan in Dublin.

The unbeaten middleweight floored Furlan in the opening round but then suffered a nasty looking cut.

Duddy was always winning the bout but he took some punishment midway through the 10 rounder at the National Stadium.

The bout, Duddy's first pro fight in Ireland, was stopped in the closing seconds of the last round as the Derryman claimed his 21st straight win.

Duddy is ranked in the top 10 by three of the major world governing bodies and he hopes to secure a European title fight later this year against Germany's holder Sebastian Sylvester.

The 28-year dumped Furlan to the canvas in the opening round as he started in typically all-action mode.

However, Duddy almost immediately suffered a cut over his left eye after a clash of heads with the brawling Italian.

Duddy continued to move forward in the early rounds although his tendency to leave his chin exposed was again demonstrated as Furlan connected on a number of occasions.

However, the Italian didn't have the power to really worry Duddy although a couple of big right hands did lead to a few gasps from the Derryman's large support in the fifth round.

After a couple of subdued rounds, Duddy again began to pick up the pace from the eighth round onwards.

Furlan still looked certain to last the distance and while he was put down twice in the 10th, he was possibly a tad unlucky to have been stopped - given that there was less than 15 seconds left on the clock.

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