2007-11-03 Joe Calzaghe w pts 12 Mikkel Kessler, Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, Wales - WBA/WBC/WBO/The Ring

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2007-11-03 Joe Calzaghe w pts 12 Mikkel Kessler, Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, Wales - WBA/WBC/WBO/The Ring. Referee: Michael Ortega. Scorecards: 117-111, 116-112, 116-112.

On 10 December at the Entertainment Centre, Sydney, Australia, Anthony Mundine knocked out Jose Alberto Clavero inside four rounds to retain the WBA ‘second tier’ title prior to outpointing Nader Hamdan over 12 rounds on 27 February 2008 at the same venue in another defence. The day after Mundine made a further successful defence, when outpointing fellow-Australian Sam Soliman over 12 rounds at the Vodafone Arena, Melbourne, Australia on 28 May 2008, he relinquished the title in order to drop down a weight division.

Following that, Kessler knocked out Dimitri Sartison inside 12 rounds at the Brondby Hall, Copenhagen, Denmark on 21 June 2008 to capture the WBA ‘second tier’ title, bearing in mind that Calzaghe continued to be recognised as the ‘super’ champion.

At the end of June, Calzaghe relinquished the WBC title to pursue a fight at the light heavyweight limit against Roy Jones and Carl Froch was eventually selected to meet Jean Pascal to decide the vacant crown. Initially, it had been reported that Froch would be taking on Jermain Taylor, but with the latter’s planned contest against Jeff Lacy virtually signed and sealed Pascal turned down the chance of a WBO ‘interim’ title fight to meet Froch. Meantime, Taylor beat Lacy (w pts 12 at the Vanderbilt University Memorial Gym, Nashville, Tennessee on 15 November) in what was billed as an official WBC eliminator and would meet the winner of Froch versus Pascal.

With the match against Jones at 175lbs signed and sealed, Calzaghe relinquished The Ring, WBO and WBA titles on 26 September as he felt that regardless of his forthcoming contest he would find it too difficult to make 168lbs again. That decision allowed the WBO ‘interim’ title fight scheduled for the next day between Denis Inkin and Fulgencio Zuniga to go ahead for the full title and, at the same time, promoted Kessler to full WBA championship status.