Brave Stephen Smith loses to Jason Sosa in enthralling WBA title fight

Jason Sosa (left) and Stephen Smith
Liverpool fighter Stephen Smith (right), 31, hit the canvas in the second round

Briton Stephen Smith produced a valiant display against Jason Sosa but failed in his attempt to dethrone the WBA super featherweight champion.

The Liverpool boxer was put down in the second round and suffered a bad cut to his eye in the third but recovered to trouble the American in the ninth.

Sosa won on points with the judges scoring 116-111, 117-110 and 116-112.

Briton Jamie McDonnell defended his WBA bantamweight title for a fifth time with victory over Liborio Solis.

The judges scored 116-112, 115-113 and 117-111 in the 30-year-old's favour, but the Venezuelan's early dominance suggested it was a far closer contest.

McDonnell told Sky Sports: "I never ever thought he was taking control."

Paul Silky Jones
The British former WBO light middleweight champion was one of many on social media to question the decision

Elsewhere on the card in Monaco, Briton Martin Murray won the vacant WBA Continental super-middleweight title by beating Nuhu Lawal also on points.

The German boxer, given only three days' notice after Russian Dmitrii Chudinov pulled out with a virus, was rocked by the St Helens boxer in the ninth round but recovered to complete the full 12 rounds.

Cuban heavyweight Luis Ortiz claimed the vacant WBA inter-continental heavyweight title with an victory over American Malik Scott after what was a turgid spectacle.

Scott, 36, who made his professional debut in 2000, barely landed scoring punches and was on the canvas on three occasions. However, he fought for 12 rounds in a slow-tempo contest against an opponent who produced very few combinations.

Judges scored 120-105, 120-106 and 119-106 in Ortiz's favour, as the boxer extended his winning run to 26 straight wins.

"Malik came to survive and in my opinion he was afraid from round one," promoter Eddie Hearn told Sky Sports.

Ortiz is set to fight in Manchester on 10 December as part of the undercard to Briton Anthony Joshua's IBF heavyweight title defence against Eric Molina.

Martin Murray (left)
Martin Murray (left) moved his career record to 34-4-1

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