British-based Mongolian Choi Tseveenpurev falls short in bid to win IBO title
Last Updated: 09/11/12 6:03pm
Chris John: was floored in the ninth round, though he claimed it was a slip
Chris John retained his WBA featherweight title after coming through a real battle against Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo in Singapore.
The unbeaten Indonesian was given the nod 117-111, 119-109, 119-109 by the three judges at ringside, though the final scores did not do justice to the challenger's efforts.
Piriyapinyo threatened to end the nine-year reign of 'The Dragon' when he dropped the champion in the ninth round with a left hand, though John suggested to the referee he had actually slipped.
The former kickboxer from Thailand also poured on the pressure in the final round, but it wasn't enough to stop him slipping to a first ever loss as a professional in his 45th outing.
"My opponent was very tough. I tried hard to punch him to the body and the head but he kept moving and persevering," said John.
John held on to defend the belt for a 17th successive bout, while he now has 48 victories and two draws on his professional record.
Meanwhile, there was disappointment on the undercard for Choi Tseveenpurev, the British-based Mongolian falling short in his bid to claim the IBO featherweight title.
Choi was beaten on points by reigning champion Daud Yordan, the Indonesian getting the verdict 117-111, 119-110 and 118-110 to defend the strap he had won in Singapore in May.