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Botile KOs Challenger Gedeon to Retain IBF Bantamweight Crown

April 3, 1996

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) _ South Africa’s Mbulelo Botile used a right to the chin to knock out U.S. Boxing Association champion Ancee Gedeon 35 seconds into the 11th round to retain his IBF bantamweight championship Tuesday night.

Blistering lefts and rights knocked Gedeon down for the first time in the 10th. Botile rained more lefts and rights, forcing Gedeon to drop to one knee.

The champion threw more than 50 blows in the next minute, and a straight left buckled Gedeon’s knees. However, Gedeon would not go down for a third time.

Botile came out looking to finish the fight in the 11th. One punch later, it was over. Gedeon lay on the canvas for several minutes before he was helped to a stool in his corner.

Leaving the ring, the champion said, ``I’m glad I won. He was very strong.″

It was the third title defense for the 23-year-old Botile, who captured the belt in a surprising second-round knockout of Harold Mestre in April 1995. Last June, he won a 12-round decision over Sam Stewart, and in November he knocked out then-undefeated Reynaldo Hurtado in the second round.

The fight appeared nearly even in the early rounds. In the ninth, Gedeon was driven back for the first time by Botile’s harder blows, but still fired back, looping solid rights to the champion’s nose.

Earlier in the night, junior welterweight contender ``Sucre″ Ray Oliviera of Fall River, Mass., wore down journeyman Lyndon Paul Walker with a dizzying array of combination punching.

But Oliviera could not stop his 139-pound opponent from Washington, D.C., in the spirited 10-rounder. All three judges scored the same _ 100-90 _ for the 144-pound Oliviera, who lifted his record to 26-5.

In the opening fight, former IBF world junior featherweight champion Welcome Ncita, 126, pummeled a game Manny Santiago, 131, of Hartford, Conn., en route to a unanimous 10-round decision.

The South African featherweight, Botile’s sparring partner and stablemate, showed only flashes of his championship form. Scores were 100-90, 100-91, 100-91. There were no knockdowns. Ncita’s record now is 37-2.

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