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Soliman beats Sturm by unanimous decision

DUESSELDORF, Germany (AP) - Sam Soliman defeated former WBA champion Felix Sturm by unanimous decision in their IBF middleweight fight on Friday night.

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Soliman was knocked down in the second round, but got up and improved as the bout went on.

The judges awarded it 116-111, 114-113, 114-113 to the 39-year-old Australian, who will next fight compatriot Daniel Geale for the IBF title.

There was a moment of confusion as Michael Buffer announced the judges had awarded it to Sturm, only to correct himself while the German and the crowd were celebrating.

Soliman improved to 42-11 with 17 KOs, while Sturm dropped to 37-4-2 (16 KOs) on the day after his 34th birthday.

It was the German's second consecutive defeat after losing his WBA title to Geale in September.

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