U.S. boxer Danny Jacobs has won the IBF middleweight title with a split decision over Ukraine’s Serhiy Derevyanchenko.
In the October 27 bout in New York’s Madison Square Garden, Jacobs scored a first-round knockdown and then held on just enough to secure victory.
Jacobs won two judges' cards by 115-112, while the Ukrainian won 114-113 on the other card.
"Hats off to Serhiy. I knew he was a true competitor," Jacobs said. "I knew he was going to be hard, so I had to dig deep."
Jacobs raised his record to 35-2, with 29 knockouts.
He claimed the title that was vacated when Kazakh boxing legend Gennady Golovkin chose not to fight Derevyanchenko, his mandatory challenger, while awaiting his rematch with Canelo Alvarez. Golovkin lost to Alvarez in September.
The 32-year-old Derevyanchenko’s record fell to 12-1, with 10 knockouts.
"It was a very close fight," Derevyanchenko said. "I knew that the knockdown could come back to bite me."
"It was a great fight, he's a tremendous competitor and I'd like to fight him again soon," Derevyanchenko said.
Jacobs and Derevyanchenko have the same manager and have worked with the same trainers and sparred against each other in Brooklyn.