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Page last updated at 03:05 GMT, Sunday, 8 June 2008 04:05 UK

Lockett destroyed by Pavlik power

Kelly Pavlik (right) and Gary Lockett
Pavlik (right) had too much power for Welshman Lockett

Kelly Pavlik demolished Gary Lockett for a successful first defence of his WBO and WBC world middleweight crowns.

Welsh challenger Lockett was not in Pavlik's class as the unbeaten American strolled to a straightforward third-round victory in Atlantic City.

Lockett's trainer Enzo Calzaghe threw in the towel after his 31-year-old fighter went down for the third time as it was one-way traffic for Pavlik.

Pavlik could now be set for a clash with Lockett's stablemate Joe Calzaghe.

"Joe Calzaghe would be a great fight for me," said Pavlik, of Youngstown, Ohio, after his 30th career knockout in 34 victories.

Pavlik's a fabulous fighter. Every time he threw punches, it felt like he was making me pay

Gary Lockett

A showdown between power-puncher Pavlik and super-middleweight king Calzaghe, boxing's longest-reigning world champion, would excite the sport's fans on both sides of the Atlantic.

"It would be a great fight for Joe," admitted Calzaghe's promoter Frank Warren. "But it's up to Joe, not Kelly Pavlik, whether the fight will happen."

Calzaghe would have been impressed with Pavlik's easy destruction of WBU champion Lockett in Atlantic City's Boardwalk Hall.

Lockett, jeered at the first bell by Pavlik's partisan crowd, quickly looked out of his depth as the champion sent the visitor toppling backwards with a crushing right and left combination in the first.

And two huge hits from Pavlik in the second round sent Lockett twice to his knees - the first occasions when 'The Rocket Man' has been put down in his professional career.


Lockett, drenched in blood, could do little as Pavlik powered to victory and 'The Ghost' sent the challenger tumbling to his knees again in the third round.

Upon returning to his feet, Lockett watched as his corner threw in the towel, ending the bout before the challenger suffered any more damage.

Referee Eddie Cotton confirmed Lockett's second professional defeat as he stopped the fight after one minute and 40 seconds into the third round - the 22nd time Pavlik has blown away an opponent inside the opening three rounds.

"I just couldn't see the punches coming," Lockett said. "It wasn't just one punch, it was the accumulation.

"He's a fabulous fighter. Every time he threw punches, it felt like he was making me pay for it."

On the undercard, Dagenham's Kevin Mitchell stopped Colombia's Walter Estrada on his American debut.

The 23-year-old Mitchell knocked his opponent to the canvas with a body shot at the end of the fifth, prompting the referee to wave off the bout with Estrada visibly dazed.

Mitchell, who was defending his fringe WBO Inter-Continental super-featherweight title, took his undefeated record to 27 wins, 20 by knockout, and no defeats.

Puerto Rico's Juan Manuel Lopez captured the WBO super-bantamweight crown with a first-round stoppage of Mexico's Daniel Ponce de Leon in a battle of southpaws.

see also
Big-fight hope Lockett's rocket
04 Jun 08 |  Boxing

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