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Gary Cully decisions Francesco Patera to continue on the revival road

A year ago this week, Gary Cully suffered a shock loss to Jose Felix in Dublin – but now The Diva has restored himself to contention again.

The Naas lightweight continued his solid turnaround from that set back with a unanimous decision win over Francesco Patera in Leeds.

Cully claimed the WBA Continental Lightweight title, taking cards of 98-92, 96-94 and 96-94 after10 rounds.

The Diva improved to 18-1, 10KOs as the 28-year-old outgunned Patera, whose record falls to 29-5.

Cully bloodied Patera in the eighth round as he began to hit the high gears.

Although the crimson dripped from the nose of the 31-year-old Belgian, who was visibly tiring, Cully was clearly still in search of a stoppage.

Patera, a two-time EUB European lightweight champ, was no mug for the Kildare southpaw, who reignited his world title hopes when defeating Reece Mould at the 3Arena in November.

Cully made good use of his 6’2” frame and caught the eye with several clever combinations.

Having gone to Joe McNally in Liverpool for the Mould bout, Cully prepared for this one back at home under the tutelage of Niall Barrett.

In the lead up, Cully said he was focussing on a big performance and going back to within touching distance of a world title shot again after his march was halted somewhat by Felix.

Patera had a win over Paddy Donovan foe Lewis Ritson on his card and lost out to Keyshawn Davis last summer and he did try to test the resolve of Cully’s body when they went to close quarters.

Patera’s best rounds were the middle stanzas to make it competitive, but Cully was able to find more.