Sturm knocks out Hearns to defend title

Felix Sturm successfully defended his WBA middleweight title by knocking out American challenger Ronald Hearns in the Porsche Arena on Saturday night.

The referee stepped in to stop the fight at 2 minutes 30 seconds of the seventh round when Hearns — son of Thomas ”Hitman” Hearns — was unable to stay on his feet after taking a couple of heavy blows in the corner.

Sturm, a German of Bosnian parentage, weighed in at 72.4 kilograms and was defending his title for the ninth time.

Hearns, 72.2 kilograms and also 32 years old, found no way past his defense.

The challenger took the fight to his opponent in the first round, but Sturm bided his time before delivering a couple of direct blows.

He was in control throughout, and the defending champion seized control of the bout in the fifth round and continued delivering telling punches until the referee stepped in.

Sturm improves his record to 35-2-1 with 15 KOs, while Hearns drops to 26-2 with 20 KOs.

”In the fifth and sixth rounds I noticed I had the upper hand and so I went for it,” Sturm said.

”I’m ready, I’m here,” he added. ”I’m looking forward to a great future with lots of great fights.”