Unbeaten Plant faces Uzcategui for super middleweight crown

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With scores of 116-110 twice and 115-111 in favor of Plant, the freshly crowned champion, Plant fell to his knees overcome with emotion when he heard "and the new!". Uzcategui missed often, as Plant ducked and feinted and slipped punches while landing to the head and body-looking nearly Floyd Mayweather-like in the process.

Plant knocked the champion down in the second and fourth rounds.

The 168-pound title bout headlines Sunday's Premier Boxing Champions card at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles (8 p.m. ET, FS1).

With the win, Plant is the only white American boxer who is also a world champion.

"This is a lifelong dream of mine".

Venezuelan Uzcategui was defending his title for the first time after inheriting it in July. This is something that I've always wanted. "I'm excited to be here and be a part of this great night". "It's been smart work, not only hard work".

"I'll be fighting for my daughter Alia, may she rest in peace. I just want to embrace this moment and soak it in".

The seventh was a close round as Uzcategui connected with some hard shots late, but Plant rebounded with solid uppercuts to take control of the eighth.

That victory gave Uzcategui the interim belt before he was elevated to a full titleholder when James DeGale elected to vacate rather than make a mandatory defense Uzcategui. Whoever has a belt, I am taking it.

With the win, Caleb Plant is now the IBF super middleweight champion. "He has talked too much, and I will punish him, beat him up and then knock him out". Uzcategui was slow to get back up, but was good to continue the fight.

"This is a great matchup".

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"I've worked my whole entire life for this". "On paper at least, it already looks like that".

"This is overwhelming. I am a kid who came from nothing".

"He started to get exhausted around the sixth round, which was the plan", Uzcategui said.

"I'm going to give a great fight for all of my fans in Mexico and the US and everyone watching".

"I think with our styles, this has the makings of a great, memorable fight". I'm looking forward to putting on a show on Sunday and turning everyone who hasn't seen me into a believer. "It's definitely not going to be an easy fight, but it's a fight that could play into Caleb's hands stylistically". "I want to be the best, and I am willing to face the best", he said.

Figueroa (18-0, 13 KOs), "The Heartbreaker", came out aggressively and never gave Flores much of a chance to even fight back, pounding away at the Mexican's body with powerful shots that made him wince.

In the co-feature, Brandon Figueroa (17-0, 12 KOs), 22, of Weslaco, Texas - the younger brother of former lightweight world titlist Omar Figueroa Jr. - will square off with Moises Flores (25-1, 17 KOs), 32, of Mexico, in a junior featherweight title elimination bout that will put the victor in position to be the mandatory challenger for world titlist Daniel Roman.

"Break him down and finish him", said Figueroa "This is exactly how I expected it to go". My message to Daniel Roman is that I am going to go home and prepare. I hope everyone comes out and supports all the hard work these fighters have put in for this show.

"I fought my idol tonight", said Delgado. "So now I'm confident I will be at my best". Figueroa and I both throw a ton of punches. "It's gonna be an all-out war".

He also dropped the former champion for only the third time in his career early on in the bout.

Former champion and pound-for-pound contender Guillermo Rigondeaux, fighting for the first time in 13 months and for the first time with Ronnie Shields as his trainer, wasted little time in handling Giovanni Delgado.

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