Ryota Murata beats Hassan N’Dam to win WBA middleweight title


TOKYO — Japanese boxer Ryota Murata defeated France’s Hassan N’Dam by technical knockout on Sunday to win the WBA “regular” middleweight title.

Murata, 13-1, 10 KOs) stopped N’Dam after seven rounds to become the first middleweight champion from Japan in 22 years.

Murata dominated the early rounds at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan. He stunned N’Dam (36-3, 21 KOs) with a series of combinations before the bout was stopped after the seventh round.

“This victory was for everyone,” Murata said. “I’m not going to rest just because I won the belt. It was the same with the Olympics. Getting there was the easy part, moving forward after that is the difficult part.”

Sunday’s fight was a rematch of a bout in May when N’Dam won on points despite being sent to the canvas several times by London Olympic gold medalist Murata.

WBA president Gilberto Mendoza called for the rematch and apologized for the decision. Two judges were suspended as a result.

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