PHOTOS: David Benavidez Defeats Ronald Gavril in Hotly-Contested Split-Decision Duel at The Hard Rock

David Benavidez and Ronald Gavril had a great fight on Saturday night (Photo: SHOWTIME – Rosie Cohe)

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By Chris Robinson

In a wild, back-and-forth fight from the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nev., David Benavidez became boxing’s youngest world champion at 20 years of age with a split-decision victory over rugged contender Ronald Gavril from Romania.

It was a very fast-paced affair from the start, with Gavril’s accuracy allowing him to dictate the pace at times while Benavidez’s strength, size, and power allowed him to have success of his own. Gavril came on very strong in the middle of the fight, only to see Benavidez turn up the tempo in the championship rounds.

In round 12, as Benavidez was pressing for a knockout, he was dropped to the canvas from a counter from Gavril, leaving the decision of the fight up in the air. Scorecards of 117-111 and 116-111 were read in Benavidez’s favor, while the remaining judge had Gavril up 116-111.

Benavidez is now a champion, the youngest ever in the super middleweight division.

“It feels amazing to win this title,” Benavidez said. “It’s everything I’ve dreamed about since I was a little kid. It’s everything I’ve dedicated myself to and I’ve worked hard for. It’s finally paid off.”

Giving his thoughts on the contest, Gavril obviously disagreed.

“I feel I won the fight,” the 31-year old stated. “I dominated the pace. I can’t say anything else other than it was up to the judges. The only thing I can do is to ask for a rematch.”

Gavril’s promoter, Floyd Mayweather of Mayweather Promotions, was seated ringside during the match and seemed surprise at the outcome. Stay tuned for more details and check below for more photos.

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Chris Robinson can be reached at CRobinson@hustleboss.com

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