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Cleverly loses WBO light-heavyweight title to Kovalev

Knocked down: Cleverly lost his title to Russian Kovalev Credit: PA

Nathan Cleverly's unbeaten record came to an end last night, as the WBO light-heavyweight champion lost his title to Russian Sergey Kovalev.

The 26-year-old Welshman had been seeking headline unification fights in the United States and was under pressure to impress an American audience with the fight at the Motorpoint Arena being televised across the Atlantic.

But Kovalev, a narrow favourite with some bookmakers, floored Cleverly twice in the third round and forced a stoppage in the next session.