Dillian Whyte Beats Jermaine Franklin in Hard-Fought War
In his latest at bat, heavyweight boxer Dillian “The Body Snatcher” Whyte (29-3, 19 KO’s) took on Jermaine “989 Assassin” Franklin (21-1, 14 KO’s). It was an important fight for Whyte, who is ranked #6 (WBC) and #10 (IBF), because he has had a very uneven run over the last couple of years. In fact, for the past three years, he has only competed once per calendar year.
Even worse, he has lost two out of three of those duels. To his credit however, The Body Snatcher lost to Alexander Povetkin by knockout then staged an immediate rematch and toppled Povetkin by KO. Unfortunately, as soon as he re-entered the win column, Whyte fought and was knocked out by WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. For Jermaine Franklin, this match stood as a huge opportunity on a grand stage to defeat the highly visible Whyte. The Michigan native climbed through the ropes unbeaten but did not have the most impressive names on his resume.
NECK AND NECK
The first four rounds of the match were fought at an even, but relaxed rate. Whyte opted to be the aggressor and slowly, continuously inched forward behind a steady range finding jab. Along with the probing lance, The Body Snatcher was wholly dedicated to his body attack and routinely hammered the rib cage. Franklin, for his part, was calm and handled himself well in the biggest fight of his developing career. Like Whyte, he remained composed and peppered him with straight punches to the head and body.
In the final minute of the fifth, the action notably intensified as the two competitors threw hard, heavy shots in the corner. The accelerated action carried over into the sixth. During these exchanges, Franklin, more than holding his own, backed The Body Snatcher up with sharp hooks and greater volume. The neck-and-neck feel of the fight increased over the seventh and eighth. Whyte appeared to have the edge in power, but Franklin was the busier and more urgent fighter.
Keeping up with the spirit of the fight, the two men fought to the final bell, seemingly hurting one another in turn. Yet in the final seconds of the fight, Whyte nailed Franklin with a thumping left hook that sent him sailing into the ropes. Despite the ferocity of the shot, Franklin finished the match on his feet. Unfortunately for him, it was Whyte who picked up the majority decision to the tune of 115-115, 116-112, and 116-112. With the win, Whyte preserves the chance to stage a rematch with two-time unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.
By: Bakari Simpson