Opetaia dethrones Briedis


By Ray Wheatley – World of Boxing

Undefeated IBF #3 cruiserweight Jai Opetaia (22-0, 17 KOs) captured the IBF cruiserweight championship from Maris Breidis (29-2, 20 KOs) with a comprehensive twelve round unanimous decision. Opetaia, who suffered a broken jaw during the bout, won by scores of 116-112, 115-113, 116-112 on Saturday at the Gold Coast Convention Centre in Queensland, Australia televised on Foxtel Main Event and Kayo Sports Pay-Per-View and ESPN+ in the USA.

Opetaia boxing from the southpaw stance and using good mobility scored with effective jabs. Breidis was aggressive and connected with head and body shots. Breidis suffered a cut over the right eye in round one. Opetaia stepped up a gear in round four and connected with solid uppercuts that hurt the champion. Breidis having trouble connecting against the fleet-footed challenger. The Australian was the aggressor in round six as the champion was holding on.

Breidis had good moments in round seven landing solid head shots but Opetaia responded with accurate combinations. Breidis was bleeding profusely. Opetaia and Breidis both connected with solid punches in round nine but the challenger looked fresher. Breidis landed bombs on Opetaia in round ten, but the Aussie remains on the balls of his feet as he weathered the storm.

Breidis desperately attacked in the championship rounds. He and Opetaia swapped power shots in round eleven and in round twelve both champion and challenger were visibly tired but throwing bombs at the final bell.

Weights from Niagara Falls
Briedis-Opetaia Undercard Results

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  • But because it was held in Australia, queue the muppets crying a tainted home town decision.
    Congrats to both men. Sensational fight to watch .

  • If he were going to win, I would have thought he would have caught Briedis with something crazy and probably early, but he won a full competitive fight. Full credit to Opetaia, I did not think he could do that.

  • I was there, pretty close to the action. I had Jai by split decision. A few Aussie’s I was near had it UD to Briedis. Good, smart fight for Jai.

    • How can you have it by split decision, do you have multiple personalities?

      • Lol thank you matt.

        When you score a fight yourself you either have it a draw or someone wins.
        Split Decision means 3 judges scoring, 1 judge has it for boxer (A) and the other 2 see it for the boxer (B).
        Boxer (B) wins by split Decision.

        Split decision, Unanimous decision and Majority decisions only occur when 3 judges score the fight.

        I guess what Rob is trying to say is him and the people around him in the crowd where split on who won the fight.

        Jai was a clear winner imo in a instant boxing classic.

    • How can a single person have an SD or UD? Do you fill out 3 scorecards? This isn’t Bingo.

  • Well, the Latvian spent too much time calling out Jake Paul and not acknowledging the two threats in his division. Briedis is lucky that wasn’t Okolie in there with him today. Opetaia did look sensational though. Breidis should retire on the back of this as he is not 110% committed to this sport.

  • Ok, did not expect this at all. Will have to watch Opetaia’s next fight to see if it was him that is so good or Briedis was no longer what he was anymore in this fight.

  • Oh no, Briedis lost! Does this mean the fight with Jake Paul that he so desperately wanted is off?

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