Lee Selby, Nathan Cleverly and Gavin Rees were all victorious on Saturday from Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff Wales.
The fighters are clearly at different stages of their careers, but victory was just as sweet for all three.
It was an entertaining night of fights, here's a look at how things transpired in Cardiff.
Throughout his career, Rees has been a popular fan favorite. Prior to Saturday night, he announced his rematch with Gary Buckland would be the final fight of his career—win or lose. Without question, the 34-year-old former WBA light welterweight champion wanted to go out on a winning note.
Thanks to a split-decision win, Rees did just that. Boxing News ED has the scorecards:
Gavin Rees defeats Gary Buckland 117-112, 117-113 and Richie Davies 113-116. I had it 116-112 GR #boxing— Boxing News (@BoxingNewsED) May 17, 2014
Rees' record stands at a-more-than-respectable 37-4-1.
The rematch with Buckland was nearly as exciting as the first fight, but Rees was able to even the series against his former sparring partner.
Rees used accurate and hard counterpunches to gain the advantage over his rival.
There will be those asking for a third meeting between Rees and Buckland. We'll see if Rees sticks to his original plan of retirement. If the financial pull of a rubber match is too much to ignore, Rees wouldn't be the first fighter to change his mind on a retirement plan.
After an embarrassing and humbling defeat at the hands of Sergey Kovalev in August 2013, Cleverly's return to the ring and cruiserweight debut was a smashing success.
The former WBO light heavyweight champion stopped Sean Corbin in the second round after landing a hard uppercut. Cleverly finished the job with a flurry, and the referee stopped the bout. He moved to 27-1 with 13 KOs after the win.
Cleverly picked up the vacant WBA Inter-Continental cruiserweight title in the process.
In an interview with iFL TV, Corbin claimed he wouldn't be "a stepping stone" for Cleverly:
In the end, that's exactly what he wound up being. Cleverly looked huge at cruiserweight, almost as if it were a far more natural weight class than light heavyweight had ever been for the 27-year-old.
Clev fans may want to curtail their excitement for now, considering Corbin isn't exactly a top-notch fighter. That said, Cleverly was in marvelous shape, he moved well and perhaps most importantly, he looked to have regained his confidence.
Cruiserweight doesn't have nearly as many tough fighters to contend with. Because of that, it looks to have been a good business decision for Cleverly to move up.
Hoping to Move into the Big Time
It wasn't as easy as the scorecards indicate:
Judges have it 119-109 x 2 and 119-110 to Lee Selby.— ByTheMin Boxing (@ByTheMinBoxing) May 17, 2014
But Selby outboxed Romulo Koasicha with foot work, hand speed and accurate counterpunching.
But there were some tough moments in the bout.
Specifically, Koasicha rocked the 27-year-old Brit in the eighth round. A counter left hook put him in peril temporarily.
Koasicha was unable to follow up and build on his brief moments of success. Selby has his sights set high moving forward.
Per Riath Al-Samarrai of The Daily Mail, Selby's promoter, Eddie Hearn, said:
I really like Nonito Donaire next for Selby. There are talks of him moving up to featherweight and we could make that as a final eliminator for a shot at Jhonny Gonzalez, the WBC champion.
I have reached out to Top Rank and it is a fight I’d love to make.
After watching Selby hit some bumps in the road against Koasicha, Selby's team should think twice about putting him in the ring with a fighter like Donaire.
Selby has only had 20 professional fights. His defense is flawed, and he also lacks elite punching power. While he does have a decent future, a fight with Donaire might be too big of a step right now.
Selby's win over Koasicha was a WBC eliminator bout, but the Brit still needs more seasoning before he'd be ready to take on Donaire, or other elite fighters.
Callum Smith stopped Tobias Webb in two rounds to remain undefeated. Smith floored Webb four times in the bout.
Paul Smith knocked out David Sarabia in the second round. He may be set to take on Arthur Abraham in his next bout.
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