Yoka stays perfect with Hammer points win

Frenchman Tony Yoka is considered one of the top heavyweight division prospects; he maintained his unbeaten start to his professional career and extended his record to 9-0; Yoka was taken the distance for just the second time in his career

Last Updated: 27/11/20 11:46pm

Tony Yoka (right) and his German opponent Christian Hammer pose during the official weigh-in
Tony Yoka (right) and his German opponent Christian Hammer pose during the official weigh-in

Tony Yoka sealed a 10-round unanimous decision win over Christian Hammer in Nantes on Friday to preserve his undefeated record.

Yoka (9-0), who won a super heavyweight gold medal for France at the 2016 Rio Olympics, has registered seven KOs from his nine fights.

The aspiring heavyweight prospect is widely credited with being part of a dangerous crop of emerging fighters in the division including Daniel Dubois, Filip Hrgovic and Martin Bakole.

Undefeated Yoka is considered one of the top prospects in the heavyweight class
Undefeated Yoka is considered one of the top prospects in the heavyweight class

However, Friday’s bout with Hammer represented just the second time that he has been taken the distance in his fledgling career, and the first fight of his that has gone to 10 rounds.

The scores came in as 100-89 for Yoka after 10 rounds, in what proved to be a stern test for the 28-year-old against the aggressive Hammer (25-7).

Christian Hammer has fought some of the heavyweight division's top fighters including Tyson Fury
Christian Hammer has fought some of the heavyweight division’s top fighters including Tyson Fury

Hammer, the 33-year-old German, has fought some of the biggest heavyweights in recent years but lost to the likes of Tyson Fury in 2015, Alexander Povetkin in 2017 and Luis Ortiz in 2019.

‘Four years is too long to wait’

Yoka has been compared to Anthony Joshua
Yoka has been compared to Anthony Joshua

“I don’t want to take four years like Anthony Joshua,” said Tony Yoka. “That’s too much time.”

Joshua took four years after winning an Olympic gold medal to add a world heavyweight title, a remarkable speed that France’s Yoka insisted he could improve upon.

That time is already up for the reigning Olympic super-heavyweight gold medallist, a talent once compared to Joshua who has become today’s forgotten heavyweight.

“Lomachenko did it after two fights,” Yoka said. “Everybody has his own way. I’m not Lomachenko and I’m not Joshua. I think I’m like between them.

“I don’t want to waste my time fighting guys I know I’m going to beat. I need a challenge. I’m not saying I’m going to fight the champion now or tomorrow, but I need to challenge myself. I need to fight for something and move up in the rankings.”

Source : Sky Sports