Lee outboxes seasoned foe in all rounds

Andy Lee picked up two vacant U.S. titles with a lop-sided 10-round points victory over veteran Alex Bunema at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Ill., last Wednesday.

Lee's 10-round shutout over Bunema [31-8-2, 17 KOs], earned the Limerick southpaw [26-1, 19 KOs] the vacant NABF and NABA middleweight belts, his first titles States-side.

It was a much-improved performance from his labored effort against Craig McEwan in his last bout two months ago when he needed a late knockout to secure a dramatic victory.

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This time, the 6-foot-2 Lee used his height and reach advantage to control Bunema and win every round against a seasoned fighter nicknamed "The Technician."

There were no knockdowns. Working behind a long left jab, Lee landed a steady stream of combinations on his man, mixing his attack with body shots and hard rights to the head.

The Congolese-born Bunema, who's 35, had claimed the scalps of several former world champions in recent years. But save for a few moments in the seventh and eighth rounds when he countered well with his right, he was never able to muster anything against Lee.

Bunema was back in survivor mode in the ninth as Lee cruised to a convincing win via scores of 100-90 on all three judges cards.

"It was a good fight [and] I'm happy with how I boxed," Lee told the Echo. "Bunema was tough and knew how to survive, he was strong too. So I boxed him and used my skill."

Asked to compare his struggle against McEwan to this solid performance, the world ranked middleweight explained: "The difference between this fight and the McEwan fight was that I came into the camp already in good shape. I had no long break between fights so training wasn't a struggle. I could focus on improving my skills and technique instead of working to get fit."

And while this victory should boost his world title ambitions, Lee is instead targeting Bryan Vera, the only man to defeat him.

"I'm not sure what or when my next fight will be. I've spoken to [promoter] Lou De Bella and told him I want a rematch with Bryan Vera and he said he will go to work on it. So we'll see."

Vera stopped Lee in seven rounds back in March 2008.


Henry Coyle had been left guessing on his opponent until the 11th hour but in the end, it didn't matter. Keith Collins, who eventually got the nod, lasted just 2:22 of the second round before he succumbed to the Western Warrior's vicious attack.

Coyle pounded Collins [3-11, 1 KO] to the body, and then dropped the Missouri journeyman with a combination in the second stanza.

Collins beat the count but was saved from further punishment by referee Pete Podgorski as Coyle followed up with a flurry.