1988-11-08 Sumbu Kalambay w rsc 7 Doug DeWitt, Louis 11 Stadium, Monte Carlo, Monaco - WBA

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1988-11-08 Sumbu Kalambay w rsc 7 Doug DeWitt, Louis 11 Stadium, Monte Carlo, Monaco - WBA. Referee: Carlos Berrocal. The champion was always in control of DeWitt (159), having outboxed him right from the opening bell with left jabs and combinations paving the way for an inside the distance victory. DeWitt had his moments, especially with left hooks, but he was unable to change the way the fight was going and by the seventh he was cut under the left eye and had taken some heavy shots to head and body. Although DeWitt tried to pick up the pace in that session, Kalambay (158½) was still unruffled and when he found an opening for the left hook the American was sent crashing to the canvas. Even though DeWitt made it to his feet it was clear that he had nothing left and the referee called a halt on the 1.31 mark.

After the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) was formed in November, following a major split in the ranks of the WBA, the new organisation failed to recognise Kalambay as their champion and nominated DeWitt to meet Robbie Sims to decide their version of the title.

Meanwhile, Kalambay forfeited WBA recognition at the end of February 1989 when failing to sign for defence against Herol Graham, the British champion, and deciding to meet Michael Nunn for the IBF title instead. Following that, the WBA selected Graham and Mike McCallum to contest the vacancy. Since losing to Kalambay back in March, McCallum had won three out of three, while Graham looked forward to his first shot at a world title, having lost just once in 42 fights. That defeat also came against Kalambay and with it went his European middleweight crown. A former undefeated British, Commonwealth and European junior middleweight champion, Graham had victories over Kenny Bristol, Lindell Holmes, Irving Hines and Ayub Kalule, and at his best was a switch-hitter of the highest order with a brilliant defence to match.