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Heartbreak for St Helens' Martin Murray as fourth title bid ends in defeat

It was heartbreak again for St Helens' Martin Murray as his fourth world title attempt ended in defeat once more against Arthur Abraham in Germany.

The defending WBO super-middleweight champion won a split points decision 115-112, 112-115, 116-111 to retain his belt.

Murray had little success in the opening rounds in Hanover and was caught by a straight, powerful right hand in the third.

It was not until the sixth that Murray landed something meaningful, forcing his opponent back on to the ropes with a right hand, but Abraham responded with a counter to mark the Briton's face.

The champion twice caught Murray in the seventh but he landed the best punch of the fight in the next round, catching Abraham with a big right glove.

Murray was deducted a point, after a couple of warnings, in the 11th for using the shoulder, which all-but ended the 33-year-old's hopes.

Boxers set for world title redemption

The next couple of weeks could be the biggest that North West boxing has ever seen.

Next week Tyson Fury bids to become heavyweight champion of the world. But, before that, two more of our boxers can become world champions.

Manchester's Anthony Crolla will be roared on by a home crowd in his rematch with Colombian Darleys Perez while St Helens hero Martin Murray is in Hannover to face Arthur Abraham.

Chris Hall reports.