LONDON (AP) – Artur Beterbiev successfully held his WBC, IBF and WBO light-heavyweight belts when he stopped English challenger Anthony Yarde in the eighth round on Saturday.
Beterbiev improved his record to 19-0 with his 19th knockout after taking charge from the seventh round at Wembley Arena.
The Montreal-based Russian dropped Yarde with a right hand and the Londoner survived the 10-count in the second minute, but his corner threw in the towel.
Yarde impressed in the first three rounds while Berbetiev’s class was just beginning to emerge. Beterbiev pinned Yarde in the fourth but Yarde hung on with hooks and uppercuts while a cut developed under his left eye.
Yarde lost his second world title shot and dropped to 23-2. Beterbiev has held the IBF title since 2017, the WBC title since 2019 and added the WBO version last June when he stopped Joe Smith at Madison Square Garden.