wins from beginning his pro career with a modest four round
points win up in Scotland against Ernie Smith, in 2005, Nathan
Cleverly had secured three major professional titles, namely,
the British, Commonwealth and European light-heavyweight titles.
He was on his way.
An eliminator for the
WBO light-heavyweight title was successfully overcome with a
tenth round stoppage of Armenian, Karo Murat. The referee
stopping the fight immediately at the beginning of the tenth
round following a doctors inspection in the corner between
Just three months later
Nadjib Mohammedi, fighting out of France, proved
to be an extremely durable opponent in a bout for the interim
WBO world light-heavyweight title. In a tough fight with
Cleverly performing at his very best he secured an unanimous
points victory with the judges awarding him the verdict 115-112,
115-113 and 116-11. The stage was now set for a match-up with
the reigning world champion, Jurgen Braehmer.
Set for 21st May, 2011
Cleverly's title shot didn't exactly go to plan, as Braehmer
pulled out in the week leading up to the fight claiming an eye
injury. Duly unimpressed the sanctioning body, the WBO,
immediately stripped Braehmer of the title. Cleverly was then
matched with Poland's,
Aleksy Kuziemski - a former Braehmer victim having lost by
11th round stoppage - for the title. In just four rounds Kuziemski
was dispatched with the referee waving the fight over due to a
nasty cut over his left eye caused by a scything right hander
from the NEW World Champion, Nathan Cleverly!
defences of his title followed, including a grudge match with
Liverpool's Tony Bellew - who was overcome by a majority points
decision - led to the next defence against undefeated Russian,
Sergei Kovalev. Known for being a devastating puncher Kovalev
was to prove all the hype surrounding him when he won in
devastating fashion by flooring Cleverly twice in the third
round before the fight was stopped in the fourth.
Over the next two years
Cleverly's career was one of mixed fortune with three wins and
two losses. One of the losses being to old foe Tony Bellew by a
split decision. Nevertheless, the Welshman proved he could still
mix it with the best when in October 2016 he finally got to face
Jurgen Braehmer for a world title shot.
In the intervening
years between their first scheduled fight (that Braehmer
withdrew from) the German had won the WBA world title with a
points win over American, Marcus Oliveira. Braehmer had also
convincingly beaten fellow Welshman (and former World Champion)
Enzo Maccarinelli by a 5th round stoppage, in a defence of his
newly won crown.
Nathan Cleverly became
a two-time world champion when Jurgen Braehmer retired in the
sixth round due to an elbow injury in a fight that was close,
but was surely going in the Welshman's favour.................