• Bernard Hopkins v Chad Dawson

Cleverly boosted by Hopkins' refusal to retire

ESPN staff
October 18, 2011
Bernard Hopkins' promoter Richard Schaefer is going to appeal the Chad Dawson result to the California State Athletic Commission © PA Photos

Bernard Hopkins is set to fight into his 48th year after confirming he will not retire in the wake of a controversial weekend loss to Chad Dawson.

Hopkins surrendered the WBC light-heavyweight title in Los Angeles because of a shoulder injury, which occurred when Dawson threw him to the ground following a clinch. The referee ruled Dawson did not commit a foul, meaning Hopkins was beaten inside the distance for the first time in his 61-fight career.

But that is not the end of the matter, as Hopkins' promoter Richard Schaefer is going to appeal the result and ask the WBC to recognise Hopkins as champion.

"I am going to fight again because I'm still the champion," Hopkins said. "I believe I will be the champion once the proper channels are being taken. My career will not end, and has no reason to end, based on Saturday."

The news boosts Nathan Cleverly, the WBO champion, who is keen to fight a revered name at the Millennium Stadium next year, having come through a draining test against Tony Bellew at the weekend.

Cleverly said on Monday he had a better chance of meeting Hopkins if the American was without a title, but a unification showdown is plausible if Dawson stands by a claim he has no interest in a rematch against Hopkins.

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