Lawrence Okolie retains WBO cruiserweight title with unanimous factors victory

Lawrence Okolie

WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie (right) moves to 18-0 as a professional

Briton Lawrence Okolie defended his WBO cruiserweight belt with a comfortable yet scrappy points victory over Michal Cieslak at London’s O2 Arena.

The 29-year-old floored the Polish challenger in the fifth round but was not at his fluent best in a bout where both men continued to grapple and hold.

The judges’ scorecards read 117-110, 116-111 and 115-112 – all to Okolie.

“It was a flat performance and I allowed it to get messy,” Okolie told 5 Live Boxing.

“This was one of those days where it was tough, awkward, and the guy was physically strong, but I need to work on the mentality that it doesn’t need to be perfect.

“I will go back to the gym, go again and make it right the next time.”

The Londoner now moves closer to a unification bout, with IBF champion Mairis Briedis a possible opponent.

Raucous crowd but scrappy bout

Lawrence Okolie
Okolie used his long reach to keep Cieslak at bay

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