Photos: Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME
WBA light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal (35-6-1, 20 KOs) barely retained his title by twelve round split decision against WBA #11 Badou Jack “The Ripper” (22-3-3, 13 KOs) on Saturday night at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.
It was an exciting fight that featured fast and furious exchanges. Pascal started fast and dropped Jack with a big overhand right hand in round four. The frantic pace gradually slowed over the second half of the fight until Jack came to life dropping Pascal with a series of rights in the final round. Scores were 114-112 for Jack, 114-112, 114-112 for Pascal.
“I won this fight, it was a close fight but I won it,” said the 37-year-old Pascal afterward.
“Badou is a great fighter but no one can say he was robbed. I won that fight. I’m the champ. I think I was in control the whole fight. I kept the middle of the ring most of the time. Badou is a great fighter, but I won the fight!”
Jack stated, “Of course I feel I won the fight, but it is what it is. He’s got a hell of a chin, he’s a tough warrior and I want to thank him for the opportunity. I thought I was winning but maybe I’m wrong.”