Pedraza tops Klimov, wins vacant IBF junior lightweight title

Jose Pedraza punches Andrey Klimov during the IBF junior lightweight title bout.

Brynn Anderson/AP

 

Jose Pedraza claimed the vacant IBF junior lightweight title with a unanimous decision over Andrey Klimov on Saturday night.

Pedraza (20-0) controlled the action through much of the fight at Bartow Arena, ending the second and seventh rounds with a flurry of punches after backing Klimov (19-2) into the corner.

Two judges gave the three-time Puerto Rican amateur champion every round with a score of 120-108, while the third scored it 119-109.

Klimov, of Russia, had reeled off three straight wins since losing to Terrence Crawford.

Pedraza said winning the title was ”a dream come true” but added that ”it was harder actually than I thought it was going to be.”

Pedraza appeared to hurt Klimov with a left hook and some hard shots to the body to end the seventh.