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Inoue eyes next challenge after beating Butler

TOKYO (AFP) – Japan’s Naoya Inoue said he had not yet reached his “goal” after becoming the first undisputed bantamweight world champion in half a century on Tuesday with a knock-out win over England’s Paul Butler.

The unbeaten Inoue, nicknamed “Monster”, had to work hard to grind down a defensive Butler in Tokyo but finally dropped him to the canvas with a flurry of shots in the 11th round.

The win saw Inoue achieve his long-held ambition of becoming the first undisputed bantamweight world champion since Panama’s Enrique Pinder in 1972, adding Butler’s WBO title to his own WBC, WBA and IBF belts.

But he warned that his rampage through the boxing world was not finished yet and that he will review his options before making his next move.

“This is not the goal,” said the 29-year-old.

“Tonight was something great to see with the fans from where I was standing in the ring, but this is just a point along the way.

“Do I feel satisfied? I am satisfied but I want to turn my mind to what comes next.”

Japan’s Naoya Inoue poses with his belts. PHOTO: AFP