INTRODUCTION: World Boxing Association (W.B.A.) Bantamweight champion Jeff Chandler of the United States retained his title on Sunday (5 April) when he took the Japanese challenger, Ejiro Murata, to a 15-round draw at the Kuramae Kokugikan arena in Tokyo.
LV ZOOM GV Champion Jeff Chandler, in yellow shorts, and challenger Eijiro Murata, red shorts, coming to centre of ring
GV Spectators at ringside
GV Murata keeping Chandler on ropes, both boxers moving the centre ring in clinch
GV Murata punching Chandler onto ropes
LV ZOOM GV Boxing in ring
GV Japanese supporters cheering Murata
GV Murata forcing Chandler onto ropes
GV Final bell, referee separating fighters, both raising fists assuming victory
SV Referee raising arms of both contestants to signify draw
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: World Boxing Association (W.B.A.) Bantamweight champion Jeff Chandler of the United States retained his title on Sunday (5 April) when he took the Japanese challenger, Ejiro Murata, to a 15-round draw at the Kuramae Kokugikan arena in Tokyo.
SYNOPSIS: Both boxers are 24 years old. Murata, at 53.25 kilograms (118 pounds) had a 1.32 (2 3/4 pounds) weight advantage, but Chandler outreached the Japanese challenger by eight centimetres (3 inches). The 6,000 strong crowd were loudly backing Murata to win.
Their favourite began the fight well, pushing Chandler to the ropes. But the American was able to ride out the storm of blows without going down.
After the second round, the fight developed into a pattern of Murata stalking the champion, who countered his aggressive challenger with some fast footwork. In the seventh round a sharp uppercut damaged Murata's eye. Later the fight got bogged down in clinches and a series of inconsequential punching exchanges. It was Murata's second draw. He took World Boxing Champion Lupe Pintor of Mexico to a draw in Mexico last June.
Murata came to the ring unbeaten from his 18 previous bouts, which have included two knockouts. Undefeated Chandler, who was making his second defence of the title, has 25 wins -- including two knockouts - and two draws to his credit. In November last year he beat Puerto Rican challenger Julian Solis. Chandler retains the title under the rules of the World Boxing Association.
At the end, both thought they had won. But Mexican referee Ernesto Magana called the draw.