James DeGale out-points Rogelio Medina to retain IBF super middleweight title
Britain’s James DeGale retains his super middleweight world title with a hard-fought unanimous decision over the Mexican on Saturday
Britain’s James DeGale retained his International Boxing Federation super middleweight world title with a hard-fought unanimous decision over Mexican Rogelio Medina on Saturday.
DeGale’s speed and accuracy made the difference against the mandatory challenger, who pressed the champion throughout a physical bout.
All three judges scored it in favour of DeGale, one by 115-113, one by 116-112 and the third 117-111.
The crowd at the DC Armory jeered the result, preferring Medina’s aggressive style.
DeGale himself admitted he wished he had done more, but he set himself up for a unification bout later in the year with World Boxing Council super middleweight champion Badou Jack of Sweden, who later scored a draw against Canadian former champion Lucian Bute.
“The boxing skills are too good,” DeGale said of his victory. “If I’m being honest, he’s a very strong fighter, but skills pay the bills.”
Still, it was far from the knockout DeGale had vowed to deliver.
The relentless Medina was effective when he trapped DeGale on the ropes, but again and again the champion was able to escape and deliver accurate, powerful blows.
“I’m a bit disappointed,” said DeGale, who improved to 23-1 with 14 knockouts. “I should be taking out people like Porky Medina – no disrespect to him.”
Medina was clearly unhappy with the decision – and even before with DeGale’s tongue-wagging taunts. He spit at the champion after the 11th round, saying he was frustrated by head-butts from the Brit.
“He said he was going to stop me,” said Medina, who fell to 36-7. “He was running all around and he didn’t stop me like he said he would. He was head butting me and I was getting a little frustrated and that’s why I spit on him.
“He’s the only one who thinks he won. The fans think I won. I definitely want the rematch.”
Southpaw DeGale, a 2008 Olympic gold medalist, made his second defence of the title he won with a victory over Andre Dirrell last May.
He said he’d be ready for a unification bout.
“I want Badou Jack,” he said.