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Sunday, 9 June, 2002, 03:59 GMT 04:59 UK
Lewis stuns Tyson for famous win
Lennox Lewis pins Mike Tyson to the ropes
Lewis had Tyson in trouble throughout the fight
Lennox Lewis recorded a superb victory over Mike Tyson to retain his world heavyweight boxing crown in Memphis on Saturday.

The British fighter won their long-awaited title bout with a stoppage in round eight.

Lewis produced his best form to see off the former champion and in doing so confirmed his status as one of the great modern heavyweights.

Lennox Lewis has his face wiped by his mother Violet
Lewis' mother Violet congratulates the champion
He finished the contest two minutes and 25 seconds into the eighth with a withering right hook that put Tyson flat on his back.

Fears that the fight could descend into the kind of ugly scenes that have dogged Tyson's career proved unfounded.

Instead the event provided a timely boost for a beleaguered sport, with the boxers trading compliments after an enthralling and sporting contest.


He was splendid, a masterful boxer - I take my hat off to him
Mike Tyson on Lennox Lewis
The victory ranks as arguably the finest moment in Lewis' long career.

And it will go a long way to silencing his critics - particularly in the US, where the 36-year-old has sometimes struggled for recognition.

"This completed my legacy," Lewis proclaimed immediately after his win.

"I wanted to prove I was the best boxer in the world, on the planet.

"Nobody gets away from my jab."

Tyson could only manage occasional glimpses of the ferocious power that made him a boxing legend in the late 1980s and early '90s.

Mike Tyson is counted out by referee Eddie Cotton
Tyson was felled by huge punch
Lewis was on top throughout the fight and, after being docked a point for pushing Tyson to the canvas at the end of round four, he then twice floored the challenger in the eighth.

First he landed with a left uppercut and, altough Tyson survived the first count, Lewis finished the job with a huge right.

Tyson, condemned in many quarters for his behaviour in and out of the ring, was magnanimous in defeat.

"I have love and respect for Lennox," Tyson said.

"He's a magnificent fighter - and I'd love for him to give me another shot (at the title)."

Lewis paid tribute to Tyson's ability to withstand intense pressure for so long.

"Some of those punches I hit him with on the right-hand side, he took them like a man - I was shocked he was able to take them."

It was the first time the two boxers, who have dominated the division in recent years, had met in the ring - but the fight nearly never happened.


Tyson had his boxing licence revoked by the Nevada State Commission after he sparked a brawl at a news conference.

Memphis was later chosen as an alternative venue.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's John Rawling
"Lewis was splendid, a masterful boxer"
Heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis
"I wanted to complete my legacy"
Defeated boxer Mike Tyson
"I would love to fight Lennox again"
A look at the Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson fight

Lewis stuns Tyson

Our man in Memphis

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SPORTS TALK
Links to more Lewis v Tyson fight stories are at the foot of the page.


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Links to more Lewis v Tyson fight stories

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