James DeGale beats Lucian Bute to retain IBF title in Quebec

James DeGale celebrates with his world title belt
DeGale is now targeting a unification bout against WBC title holder Badou Jack

British boxer James DeGale beat former champion Lucian Bute on a unanimous decision to retain his IBF super-middleweight title.

DeGale, 29, was taken all the way by the Romanian-born Canadian in Quebec.

The 2008 Olympic champion, in his first world title defence, started strongly but was forced back by his opponent.

Victory capped a memorable night for British boxing after Tyson Fury beat Wladimir Klitschko in Germany to become WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion.

Degale, who is now targeting a unification bout against WBC title holder Badou Jack, paid tribute to 35-year-old Bute.

"I said Lucian Bute is a world-class fighter. I'm young, fresh and peaking now but all credit to him. He's a champion and, believe me, he will be back," he said.

"I think my defence was all right - I still have to work on things. The next three or four years, that's when I'll be at my best."

DeGale suffered a nasty cut above his left eye after an accidental clash of heads in the fifth round, but had just enough to see off his persistent rival.

The judges scored the fight 116-112, 117-111, 117-111 in the Briton's favour.

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