1927-01-21 Fidel LaBarba w pts 12 Elky Clark, Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD
1927-01-21 Fidel LaBarba w pts 12 Elky Clark, Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD. Referee: Patsy Haley. Strangely scheduled for 12 rounds and not 15, the shorter distance did not do the little Scot, who was a notoriously slow starter, any favours. Several times in his career, Clark had proved that he could finish an opponent off in the final stages of a 20 rounder, while the shorter course obviously suited the American. The New York Times fight report stated that Clark (111½), a human punchbag, was battered to defeat over 12 monotonous rounds of a fight that would decide the world championship. Clark was floored five times in all, but with LaBarba (111½) lacking a kayo punch he somehow managed to survive only to lose the unanimous decision. Afterwards, LaBarba claimed that he had hurt his right hand in the eighth round, but for the game little Scot it was the end of the road, being forced to retire with eye damage and general ill health.
By now, LaBarba was having difficulty making 112lbs, and after officially relinquishing the title on 25 August in order to further his studies at Stanford University, the Californian Boxing Commission, the NBA and NYSAC, and later Britain and the IBU, all looked to find a successor.