Betting preview: Anthony Yarde can right the wrongs against Lyndon Arthur in rematch

"I watched the fight with sound and then again on mute. I believe I won the fight at least 7-5 and I won the last round big."

Anthony Yarde will be a man on a mission on December 4 at the Copper Box Arena when he faces Lyndon Arthur in a much-anticipated light heavyweight rematch.

Yarde held his arm aloft in the first fight in December 2020, but was shocked to see Victor Loughlin raise the arm of his rival Arthur.

"I strongly feel that was a robbery," said Yarde in the aftermath.

"I watched the fight with sound and then again on mute. I believe I won the fight at least 7-5 and I won the last round big.

"I felt I was winning a fight that was lacking a bit of entertainment so I pressed the last round to try and get the knockout," Yarde tweeted on reflection the day after the Church House contest.

Judge Ian John-Lewis made Yarde a 117-111 winner - and that still looks as baffling now as it did on the night.

Michael Alexander and Marcus McDonnell made it 115-114 to Arthur and he was awarded the split decision.

The victory was made even more remarkable by the fact that Manchester fighter Arthur injured his right hand in the warm up.

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He barely threw it all night, but his reach advantage and snapping jab got him the spoils.

The first three rounds firmly went in favour of Arthur, who knocked the head back of Yarde with his piston-like jab. The pace was slow and that suited the taller man, who was happy to stay out of range.

Yarde did land his first meaningful right hand in the fourth as he tried to step on the gas. Arthur's jab came back to the fore in round five. The pace was far from frantic though and Arthur's head movement and fainting was keeping Yarde at bay. The Londoner did close the distance at the end of the fifth to land a right hand.

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With it clearly evident that Arthur was unable to land the right hand with any conviction, Yarde tried to wave on his rival. Arthur though remained out of range, refusing to lead off against Yarde.

Both men were told they were winning the fight going into the final round, but it was Yarde who came on strong. A couple of left hooks caught Arthur, before he landed the punch of the fight.

Yarde managed to get in close and landed a big right hook on the jaw of Arthur that buzzed the 6ft 2in fighter.

Yarde, with 20 knockouts from 21 victories, pushed for another stoppage, but Arthur grabbed hold and stood firm before getting the controversial verdict.

Tactical masterclass

Arthur's tactics proved on point in the first fight in front of an empty arena. The atmosphere for the Hackney rematch will be supercharged in comparison to the first fight and Yarde will have the support.

Despite his loss he is the 5/6 favourite with Planet Sport Bet and if he has learnt from the first encounter then he can get revenge.

The Hackney-born boxer will have to impose himself far earlier in the fight and make sure the tempo is quicker. Yarde barely seemed to break sweat in the first three rounds and was kept at bay by the rapier-like jab of Arthur. And that was his undoing; he simply left himself too much to do.

Arthur though will fancy his chances again and at evens, and with a fully working right hand, he will pose more problems for Yarde.

Arthur also has a good knockout ratio with 13 of his 19 wins ending via a stoppage. He was robbed of that threat in the first fight due to injury.

He did, however, stop Davide Faraci in the ninth round in his only fight since, in July.

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Yarde though was explosive in his demolition of Alex Theran the following month.

Yarde put the Colombian on the canvas in the first round with a left hook. And finished him off with a body shot which the 30-year-old could not get up from.

Yarde will be fired up for a similar fast start and a victory will see him well placed to take over from Arthur as the WBO's top dog and in line for a shot at Joe Smith's world title in 2022.

Yarde just came up short when he previously challenged for the WBO world title in August 2019. He lost to the impressive Sergey Kovalev in 11 rounds, but not before he almost stopped the champion in round eight with a powerful body shot.

When and where?

Saturday, December 4, 2021 at the Copper Box Arena, London.

What's on the line?

Chance to be rated No.1 challenger by the WBO and a future shot at Joe Smith's world title.

How can I watch?

The event will be broadcast live on BT Sport 1. The fighters are expected to ring walk at around 22.00pm.

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