Boston. Sharif “The Lion” Bogere’s build-up ahead of a title challenge just got a little more murky.
Bogere, now 32-2-0 lost to Javier Fortuna in a 10-round lightweight eliminator contest at the Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, California, USA Saturday night.
All three judges, Max Deluca, Fernando Villareal and Zachary Young gave unanimous scores of 96-93 to the 29 year old Dominican Republic boxer in a fight that was awkward.
There was a time in the first five rounds that the fight appeared headed to Bogere’s victory. He had hit Fortuna hard with combinations and body punches. Bogere’s jab was also effective, bullying Fortuna on the ropes.
The Dominican seemed not himself at this point, thanks to the bell that saved him. The jeers continued in the third and fourth rounds, which also lacked action from both boxers.
Bogere was the busier boxer at the start of the sixth round but things came apart for him after that cut on his right eye following an accidental clash of heads and later a knockdown call in the same round which to the eyes of many, was questionable.
Fortuna, 34-2-1, 23 KO capitalised on these two factors to regain. It seemed like he had hit another gear.
His hand speed accelerated and he became the offensive machine, investing mostly in the bodywork, an approach that caused great harm to Bogere who was oozing blood from the cut on his eye.
Bogere upped his tempo in the last two rounds, putting his jab to use oftenly but the awkward style of Fortuna, a former titleholder at both 126 and 130 pounds respectively, always counter punched.
This defeat comes as Bogere’s second career loss. His first defeat was in 2013 to Cuban Richard Abril during a World Boxing Association World Lightweight title fight.
Bogere didn’t lose the fight, he ran out of time.