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Ran Nakash, the unbeaten Israeli cruiserweight, moved a step closer to a world title shot after outpointing Victor Barragan over 10 hard rounds to claim his 25th straight professional victory.
Nakash, taken the distance for only the sixth time, took the decision by scores of 99-91, 97-93 and 96-94 over Barragan, a late replacement, at The Arena in Philadelphia.
The 32-year-old Haifa fighter is now being lined up to fight American Bobby Gunn, who has twice challenged for world titles.
Gunn was blasted out inside a round by Welshman Enzo Maccarinelli, the former WBO champion, three years ago and lost his last fight a year ago when he was stopped after four rounds by Tomasz Adamek, the ex-IBF holder from Poland.