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Live Reporting

Ben Dirs

All times stated are UK

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  1. Post update

    Righto, I think that's just about us for this evening. Congratulations to James DeGale - the first British Olympic champion to win a professional world title. Night!

  2. Champion Chunky

    Steve Bunce

    Boxing expert on BBC Radio 5 live

    "That was about as good as it gets. DeGale was called Chunky because he was a fat kid. But you don't get to do that without spending a long time in the gym."

  3. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Andre Dirrell and James DeGale

    Shohidur Rahman: DeGale did nothing in the 2nd half of the fight and he's talking himself up like he's amazing. Embarrassing

    Alex Smith: Hope Groves wins his fight now. Groves vs DeGale with titles on the line would be huge.

    Seraph: Very surprised at that result but well done James DeGale and another British champion so it's all good

    Mark Twain: I'm watching this "live' on NBC here in USA and they gave it by 1 point on their unofficial scorecard... but well done James!

  4. DeGale on top of the world

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "I was excited when this fight was signed. The only shame was they weren't better known over here. You rarely see guys this good taking this kind of risk. They still have this hunger.

    "When you win like this, you feel a relief. The flight home will be so happy - achieving a lifelong dream. He will feel very proud."

  5. Post update

    So much for Dirrell's lack of heart, by the way, it takes something to get up after being knocked down like he was in the second round. The man from Flint, Michigan falls to 24 wins and two defeats, DeGale improves to 21 wins and one defeat. Mike Costello and Paulie Malignaggi are still nattering on 5 live, I'm sure they'll have DeGale on in a minute.

  6. Tribute tweets

    Joe Calzaghe, Welsh super-middleweight legend: "Congrats to @jamesdegale1 I think he'd whoop Froch! Predictions???"

    Andy Murray, tennis star and boxing fan: "Well done to @jamesdegale1 on becoming world champion for the first time! Great effort."

  7. Rule Britannia

    James DeGale

    That win for DeGale could set up a rematch with bitter domestic rival George Groves - Groves is expected to challenge Sweden's Badou Jack for the WBC super-middleweight belt later this year. One thing is for certain, Britain doesn't have a problem churning out world-class 12 stoners.

  8. James DeGale - history maker

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "Very few fighters have beaten an American in a world title fight in America. It's a rare achievement."

  9. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Both guys fought a tremendous fight. It shows fighters can come to the United States and get a verdict because this was very close. So many of the rounds were a toss-up."


    James DeGale wins by unanimous decision, claims vacant IBF super-middleweight belt

    Howard Foster of England and Daniel Fitzgerald of the united States gave it to DeGale 114-112, Canada's Alan Davis, bizarrely, 117-109. Not sure what he was watching. Whatever, James DeGale is the first British Olympic champion to win a world title in the pro ranks.

  11. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "I've got it by just one point to Dirrell, he showed the mental strength he hasn't shown before."

  12. Post update

    Well, what will the judges make of that? It's Alan Davis of Canada, Daniel Fitzgerald of the United States and Howard Foster of England. But before the scores are announced and the belt awarded, we should just reflect on what a fine fight that was. Most predicted a dud, far from it.

  13. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "After all the barking and insults, there was a warm embrace, but neither man is celebrating, and I've got it as a draw."

  14. Post update

    Round 12

    This could be a crackerjack last round, who's got the bigger heart? Let's find out. Another slow start from DeGale, Dirrell not doing enough either. DeGale at least coming forward now, catches Dirrell with a right hook... Dirrell hits back with a left of his own... there's the bell, and that was surely DeGale's last round. For me, that was a draw...

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 113-113 DeGale

  15. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Dai Davis: DeGale going to lose this by not finishing it early. Judges away from home will give him no hope.

    David Beasley: DeGale is snatching defeat from the hands of victory here. Throwing it away by not taking initiative earlier.

    Cammy Renwick: DeGale barely thrown anything since 6th round!! Less chat, more punch!!

  16. Post update

    Round 11

    I didn't think I'd be saying this after round two, but DeGale needs a grandstand finish to win this, surely. Dirrell pins DeGale again, good right-hand counter from DeGale. But he needs more than that. DeGale floating about in there, on the outside, not sure what the game-plan is. Better, loading up and letting them go. Great left from DeGale, stands Dirrell up, and another on the bell. Maybe that's DeGale's, could go down to the wire.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 104-103 DeGale

  17. Post update

    Round 10

    I can only think that when we thought DeGale was saving himself for a couple of rounds, he had actually run out of steam. Dirrell with another snappy left at the start of the round before sticking one straight down the pipe as DeGale sways on the ropes. It's difficult to remember the last punishing shot DeGale threw. Dirrell with another flurry, nothing coming back from DeGale off the ropes, another round in the bag for the American.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 95-93 DeGale

  18. Just who is going to win this?

    Some of the greats are weighing in...

    Barry McGuigan

    And 2000 Olympic champion Audley Harrison is following too...

    Audley Harrison
  19. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "The American is getting ever more confident, that's how much he has recovered from the knockdowns in the second. The two men are barking at each other and had words at the end."

  20. Post update

    Round Nine

    DeGale needs to do something in this round, land something of substance to make Dirrell think again. Dirrell with another left-hand counter that puts DeGale off-balance and DeGale is throwing this away at the moment, just not doing enough. Jim McDonnell in his corner has got work to do. Dirrell full of confidence now, he knows he's in control of proceedings and might have pulled ahead. DeGale sticks his tongue out, but he might be losing this.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 85-84 DeGale

  21. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "DeGale's face is getting ever more reddened. Both fighters are landing solidly, but also missing at times."

  22. Post update

    Round Eight

    James DeGale

    Time for DeGale to step it up again, his trainer Jim McDonnell certainly thinks so. Dirrell finds the target with a big left, the American pouring it on now. DeGale not doing enough again, Dirrell looking the more dominant force in there now. Nice jab from DeGale, Dirrell lands with a flashing left just before the bell. That's Dirrell's round again, I've got it level - but the three judges might disagree...

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 75-75 DeGale

  23. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "The perception was that Dirrell was controlling the round. DeGale was not able to find his distance very well."

  24. Post update

    Round Seven

    DeGale not doing enough in the early stages of the round again. Dirrell lets his hands go but most of those punches were blocked. DeGale talking to Dirrell now, taunting him. Got to be careful with that overhand left, though. DeGale has given that round away, though, Dirrell has simply outworked him. This could be getting close.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 65-66 DeGale

  25. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Barnaby Chesterman: I might be a touch biased but for me DeGale landing more, cleaner and harder punches. Hard to give any round to Dirrell.

    Tom Haddigan: I still take James DeGale to win as Dirrell gets discouraged.

    Alex Day: Funnily enough Dirrell doesn't seem so keen on the trash talk since round 2.

  26. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "DeGale landed the harder shots and the more action there is, the better for him. Dirrell has blood coming from his nose and the inside of his mouth."

  27. Post update

    Round Six

    Let's hope DeGale hasn't gassed early - he's started the sixth with more intent. Dirrell backs him onto the ropes but DeGale finds him with a left-right combination. Smart left from Dirrell, before DeGale pins him in the corner and lands with a clubbing right. It all goes off in the final seconds of the round, with both men landing with big shots on the bell. Tight one, but maybe Dirrell's again.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 55-57 DeGale

  28. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "It was a very evenly contested round as we approach the halfway stage, and this could be getting close."

  29. Post update

    Round Five

    Andre Dirrell

    Good, flashing right hand from Dirrell at the start of the fifth. DeGale lunging in and he gets clocked by a left hand. DeGale suddenly looked tired in that round, too many single shots, making it too easy for Dirrell to counter him. The American surely closes the gap.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 45-48 DeGale

  30. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Plenty going on. Are you having fun? Use #bbcboxing on Twitter to join in the chat.

    David Valentine: Dirrell getting outboxed by DeGale at the end of each round and making it count. Hope points reflect that.

    James Peacock: Great fight between DeGale and Dirrell. Awesome stuff.

    Oliver Peppiatt: Perhaps not as close and cagey as I'd thought, some huge shots early doors.

  31. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "There were some mind games at the beginning of the round - a battle for real estate as they kept changing stances, but Dirrell kept landing his jabs."

  32. Post update

    Round Four

    The cut above DeGale's right eye is not much more than a nick, so no real drama there. Dirrell turns orthodox at the start of the fourth, trying to get that left jab in DeGale's face. DeGale switches as well and it's all gone cagey... Dirrell chatting to the ref and DeGale makes hay, clocking him with a right jab. We've suddenly got two southpaws again, big swing and a miss from DeGale, needs to be careful and keep his shape. I'll give that one to Dirrell courtesy of some nice work with the jab.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 35-39 DeGale

  33. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Dirrell seemed to control a lot of it in the first two minutes in the third round, but then DeGale took control. Dirrell needs to get back to his basics and keep it simple, If he gets too complicated, DeGale will pounce."

  34. Post update

    Round Three

    Dirrell looks to have recovered well enough by the start of the third. Big left from Dirrell, back of the neck, this is warming up nicely - what was that I said about two southpaws equalling a stinker? Not a bit of it so far. DeGale lands with another left as Dirrell jags his head back and that's surely enough for DeGale to nick it.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 25-30 DeGale

  35. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "DeGale landed a brilliant overhand left with 15 seconds to go. He was cut, he was under pressure, but what a response. He's turned the fight his way."

  36. Post update

    Round Two

    Plenty of chat at the end of the first, with both men giving it bunches. I think it's safe to say these two men don't like each other much. Smart jab by DeGale but Dirrell fires back with a whiplash cross. Looks like DeGale's got a cut right eye, he's pawing at it. Good combination from Dirrell as DeGale suddenly looks rattled. Dirrell flattened by a huge left hand! What a shot with 20 seconds left in the round. Dirrell gets a standing count after touching down again and DeGale goes in for the kill. Dirrell, on rubber legs, saved by the bell...

    BBC Sport scorecard: Dirrell 16-20 DeGale

  37. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Each guy had a couple of good moments but no-one landed anything solid."

  38. Post update

    Round One

    Nice work on the inside from DeGale, positive start from the Brit. Dirrell doing a bit of talking in there but it's DeGale doing most of the real work. Nice left-hand counter from Dirrell but that's surely DeGale's round.

    BBC scorecard: Dirrell 9-10 DeGale

  39. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Some final thoughts on who will win. Give us your opinions throughout the fight using #bbcboxing on Twitter.

    Oliver Peppiatt: Expecting a close cagey fight here but DeGale to sneak it and bring that World Title belt back to the UK.

    Derek Rivers: James DeGale all day, finish stronger, comfortable points win.

    James McGowan: Dirrell is not a tough enough competitor to beat DeGale. He will run, hold and eventually quit

  40. Tuning up

    Eurovision Song Contest

    By the way, the Eurovision Song Contest is on the other channel. But if it's British success you're after, you're more likely to find it here than in Austria. Ding-ding, they're almost off in Boston...

  41. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former two-weight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "Each fighter is generally southpaw, but they would beat 70-80% of their opponents with their back-up stance. They are both very good fighters. They are well schooled, well taught - their amateur careers show that."

  42. Post update

    We're expecting the ring walks any moment. Dirrell hasn't exactly got a large following and it's quite possible DeGale will have the noisier support in the arena. And here they come, or at least here comes DeGale...

  43. Post update

    Paulie Malignaggi

    Former WBA and IBF welterweight champion on BBC Radio 5 live

    "This one certainly has me guessing. There's a lot of talent from both ends. The oddsmakers have them about even and this is going to be an exciting one."

  44. Post update

    A quick rundown of those six post-War British Olympic champions who have tried and failed to win a pro world title...

    ... Terry Spinks won flyweight gold in 1956 but the highlight of his pro career was winning the British featherweight title. Chris Finnegan won middleweight gold in 1968 and fought for the world light-heavyweight title in 1972, losing to the great Bob Foster. Audley Harrison won super-heavyweight gold in 2000 but was knocked out by David Haye when he challenged for his fellow Briton's WBA heavyweight title in 2010. Luke Campbell and Anthony Joshua, gold medallists in London and still in the early stages of their pro careers, are the other two.

    Audley Harrison won Olympic Gold in Sydney in 2000
    Image caption: Audley Harrison won Olympic Gold in Sydney in 2000
  45. Post update

    Since losing to Froch in 2009, Dirrell has only fought six times. DeGale, meanwhile, has had 13 fights in the same period. What that means, I'm not quite sure. For his part, Froch believes DeGale will prevail. Not because he's necessarily the better fighter but because he believes his heart is bigger. We shall see.

  46. Get involved via #bbcboxing

    Who wins and why? Give us your assessment using #bbcboxing on Twitter

    Tom Tom: (Hopefully) DeGale, he's aggressive and carries deceptive power. Let's bring it home!!

    Darren Bartlett: Going for James, think he's matured since Groves fight and looks focused

    Alex Day: Not convinced Dirrell can still live with elite given inactivity since 2010 whilst DeGale improving. JDG win by split decision.

    dntdelthiscall: Dirrell on points or stoppage. James has improved but he needs a top-class trainer like Virgil Hunter to achieve his full potential

  47. Post update

    British fans cheered for DeGale at Friday's weigh-in
    Image caption: British fans cheered for DeGale at Friday's weigh-in

    Ron Lewis of The Times is in the Agganis Arena in Boston and he's just tweeted that only about 3,000 are in this afternoon. The irony being, DeGale was probably fighting in front of bigger crowds at the Bluewater shopping centre a couple of years back. Strange world, boxing.

  48. Post update

    Ring walks expected at approximately 21:40 BST, so stand by. Not many are expecting a barnstormer this evening - neither man fights off the front foot and both are southpaws, which often makes for a stinker. Incidentally, today is the 61st birthday of middleweight great Marvin Hagler, perhaps the greatest leftie to ever lace gloves.

    Marvin Hagler
  49. Post update

    Mike Costello

    BBC Radio 5 live boxing commentator in Boston

    "By winning tonight. James DeGale would join some of the greatest names in boxing, including Sugar Ray Leonard, who's just a few yards from me, as a former Olympic champion who went on to win a pro world title.

    "DeGale arrived looking very confident, but Dirrell also has only one defeat and has been in the pro ranks for 10 years. They couldn't be more evenly matched."

  50. Post update

    DeGale, 29, has one loss on his pro CV - he was outpointed by bitter domestic rival George Groves in 2011. But a victory today allied to Groves beating WBC champion Badou Jack this summer could lead to a monumental rematch in the autumn.

    Carl Froch beat Andre Dirrell

    Dirrell, who won Olympic bronze in 2004, has also been beaten only once, by Nottingham's Carl Froch in 2009. Many thought the native of Flint, Michigan nicked that fight. Froch, however, has called Dirrell a "coward" because of his negative tactics, which is a bit much to be honest.

  51. Get Involved

    Who wins and why? #bbcboxing

    This could be a close one to call, but we want to hear who you believe will win and why.

    Let us know whether it's Dirrell on points or DeGale in round one. Tweet us at #bbcboxing.

  52. Post update

    Andre Direll and James DeGale

    Greetings. This evening we bring you live text commentary of James DeGale's world title tilt against Andre Dirrell in Boston, with the vacant IBF super-middleweight title at stake. That is Boston, Massachusetts, in case you were wondering - the fight is due to begin at 16:30 local time, 21:30 BST, for the purposes of American television.

    Londoner DeGale, who won middleweight gold in Beijing in 2008, is bidding to become the first British Olympic champion to win a pro world title. Six British men have struck gold since World War Two but none of them has gone on to win a world title in the paid ranks. Good luck 'Chunky'...