Today at 5 p.m. ET on Channel 5 in the United Kingdom, Lee Haskins makes the first defense of his IBF bantamweight title in Cardiff, Wales, facing Mexico's Ivan Morales, the younger brother of the legendary "El Terrible," Erik Morales.
Haskins (32-3, 14 KO) beat Ryosuke Iwasa for the interim title last June, then was awarded the full belt in November when Randy Caballero missed weight for his title defense. He's been out of the ring for 11 months now, and faces a hungry 24-year-old prospect in Morales (29-1, 17 KO), who is just two fights removed from an upset loss to journeyman Edgar Jimenez. It's not exactly a top tier world title fight, but it's a world title fight all the same.
For more on the Haskins-Morales matchup, check out our full preview.
Also in action will be top flyweight prospect Andrew Selby (4-0, 3 KO), as he fights for the vacant British title against Louis Norman (11-1-1, 2 KO).
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Lee Haskins def. Ivan Morales by unanimous decision (119-108, 118-110, 118-110)
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ROUND BY ROUND
LEE HASKINS vs IVAN MORALES
Round 1: Haskins starting quickly, a pair of southpaws. Morales trying to jab, Haskins flicking out a jab and throwing behind it, then getting right back out. Haskins throwing some uppercuts and a chopping right hand, Morales just wading in and easy to hit so far. Channel 5 team have read their Sky Sports Boxing Commentary Cliff’s Notes. "Mexican, they’re all tough, over there." Good start here for Haskins. Haskins 10-9
Round 2: Morales with a nice left early in the round, but Haskins settles himself and continues landing, countering now with Morales getting a bit more aggressive. Morales definitely doing more and doing better in this round. Haskins fighting perhaps a bit overconfidently in the round. Much closer round. Morales 10-9, 19-19
Round 3: Morales again a bit more aggressive this round than before. He comes forward a bit recklessly, but doesn't seem to fear what's coming back from Haskins. He's throwing with more reckless abandon. Haskins staying at his usual tempo, looks fairly comfortable, himself. Left hand from Haskins up top. Another competitive round, though not exactly a thrill. Haskins 10-9, 29-28
Round 4: Both guys landing, Haskins punching in counter, Morales trying to lead the action. Morales swelling under the right eye. Haskins able to bait Morales a bit. Morales flat footed too often. Just isn't able to change what Haskins wants to do, really, even if he is letting his hands go. Haskins 10-9, 39-37
Round 5: Morales controlling the tempo a bit better this round, thinking more, not as pointlessly wading in, having a better round here. Haskins picking and pecking in the latter half of the round, but Morales looks more in control at the moment. Morales 10-9, Haskins 48-47
Round 6: Morales with a good left hand midway through the round, Haskins also landing, but not as eye catching. Haskins charges forward with a combination, gets clipped on his way back out, but that was Haskins with the eye catching work. This is another round you can debate, Haskins won the final minute which might be enough, and is for me. Haskins 10-9, 58-56
Round 7: Haskins lands a nice shot a minute into the round, he's moving around more, sticking and moving now. Morales back with a decent left. Good counter jab catches Haskins recklessly coming in. Haskins likely doing enough to win rounds at "home," even if he's not drastically outclassing Morales, whose class is questionable. But I like Morales' work way more than Channel 5 do. Morales 10-9, Haskins 67-66
Round 8: Morales jabbing more now, poking it in up top and to the body. Haskins keeping him at bay, though, for the most part, and doing well defensively. Haskins lulling Morales somewhat. Haskins with a nice round here, after what looked promising early for Morales. Haskins 10-9, 77-75
Round 9: Morales wants to be more aggressive, you can see that in his body language, but he doesn't have the footwork or the skill to really do it too effectively. Haskins' jab good this round. Haskins 10-9, 87-84
Round 10: Haskins starting quick this round. If he thinks he's got anything left to prove in this fight, he's aiming to prove it, and that's good to see. Haskins not fighting like he's up 9-0. Morales maybe hurt just a bit early on here, and Haskins really moving around and boxing nicely, in his awkward style. Haskins 10-9, 97-93
Round 11: Haskins continuing to move and box. Morales trying to come forward, but with little actual success. Haskins changing directions a lot, landing quick little pot shots, Morales mostly just following him at this point. Morales has certainly grown discouraged, and rightly so. He's just found himself a little out of his depth here. Haskins slips in the corner on some water that was an issue between rounds, in Morales' corner. Haskins 10-9, 107-102
Round 12: Let's see if Morales throws caution to the wind. Yeah, he's definitely looking to start quick, but he winds up twisted up and countered anyway. Even being more reckless, Morales can no longer really find Haskins with anything clean. Haskins on his bike a bit, avoiding a lot of contact, but also throwing his hands and probably outlanding Morales here, anyway. It's the most enjoyable way for someone to "coast" through a 12th round, sure, he's moving and staying away from danger, but he's also punching still. Morales firing away at the end of the round, but Haskins slips almost all of it and pops him with one more shot. Haskins 10-9, 117-111