James DeGale won his first world title on this day in 2015
James DeGale made history on this day in 2015, as he became the first British fighter to win both an Olympic Gold medal and a world title in the professional ranks.
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DeGale turned pro in 2009 following his Olympic triumph. He was set up for great things as a pro as he featured high on undercards, and even won the British title in just his ninth fight. However, Degale would be dealt his first pro loss two fights later, as he came up second best to amateur rival George Groves.
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DeGale did not let this loss hold him back, as he returned to instantly win the European title. DeGale continued to impress, picking up rankings belts, before being mandated to fight for the vacant IBF world title in his 22nd fight.
Andre Dirrell would be the man stood in the way of DeGale's world title aspirations. Dirrell only had one loss on his 25 fight record, and that came in his first attempt at a world title against Carl Froch.
DeGale travelled to Boston for his maiden world title shot, and left an impression early on as he dropped Dirrell twice in the second round of the contest.
DeGale let off the gas a bit as Dirrell began to get back in the fight as the rounds went by but was proven not to be enough. The fight went the distance, and the scorecards read 117-109 and 114-112x2, all in favour of James DeGale, declaring him IBF world champion away soil.
History was made as DeGale would be the first Brit to win Olympic Gold and a world title, only twice this achievement has been replicated since, and the at the hands of that were Anthony Joshua and Nicola Adams.