Stade De Suisse in Berne, Switzerland played host last night to heavyweight Wladimir Klitschko's rematch with American veteran Tony Thompson.
Klitschko put his IBF, WBO, IBO and WBA Super belts on the line in a sequel to the 2008 match with Thompson that Klitschko won by stopping the challenger in 11 rounds.
Klitschko opens the contest by pressuring but not throwing many punches, missing a right to the head, while landing a right to the body. Thompson gets on his toes, looking for counter opportunities, lands a jab or two but misses most of his efforts including some very awkward left hands.
To open the second round, Thompson immediately throws two clumsy punches which earns him a stiff right from Klitschko. The giants paw with their lead hands, searching for an opening and it's Klitschko who goes on the offensive, chugging forward amid a tangle of arms that leads to a clinch.
Thompson hangs back, offering up occasional jabs that miss while the champion tries right hands that fail to find the awkward challenger. The high point of the bout thus far comes when Thompson is bundled over to the canvas during a failed clinch.
Klitschko lands a couple of right hands before Thompson is wrestled to the canvas at the end of the frame.
At the urging of his corner, Thompson starts round three with an active jab and this takes the initiative away from Klitschko until Thompson reverts to sporadic efforts.
Klitschko isn't boxing anywhere close to his potential, he's just pawing with the left and looking for right hand openings, resulting in a very ugly, uninteresting bout that is starting to feature a lot of clinches.
Only a Klitschko right to the body and a Thompson left break the monotony of the third.
The fourth features more activity, but not more success from either fighter until Klitschko connects with a meaty left hook as he bull rushes Thompson onto the ropes. The rest of the round goes back to posturing, clinches and arm tangling.
The fifth starts with a Klitschko right hand and Thompson responds with more activity, adding in a few in-effective left hands to go along with the sporadic jabs.
Klitschko goes back to slowly walking forward, although he's now pot-shotting with the left hand here and there rather than just pawing. Thompson gets up on his toes and tries his hand at pressuring the champ behind the jab but the initiative just ends in a clinch.
Klitschko finally gets Thompson into a corner and instantly follows up a quick jab with a perfect right that has the challenger disoriented and on the seat of his pants. Thompson beats the count and survives the final 30 seconds of the round.
Thompson starts the sixth with a lot of movement behind the jab but a glancing Klitschko right on the ropes puts the challenger into stationary defensive mode, hands high, not throwing anything as Klitschko looks to end it.
This occurs during the waning moments of the round after Klitschko dishes out a two handed battering that leaves Thompson crumpled in a heap on the floor.
Thompson beats the count but doesn't convince referee Sam Williams that he wants to go on, ending the contest at 2:56 of the sixth.
Klitschko runs his record to 58-3 (51), defending his WBO, IBF, IBO and WBA Super crowns. Thompson now stands at 36-3 (24).
The undercard featured Bern based Japanese stylist Aniya Seki, 20-2-2 (1), post a 99-92, 99-92, 99-93 points verdict over ten rounds against Romania's Eva Marcu, 7-5 (2), to annex the vacant WIBF and GBU super bantam titles.