O’Shaquie Foster eyes Navarrete or Valdez-Wilson winner, Nova wants to run it back

O’Shaquie Foster defended his WBC junior lightweight world title with a split decision over Abraham “El Super” Nova on Friday evening at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. 

The fighters took a look at one another in the early rounds but Foster began to take control by rounds six and seven, landing power shots on a Nova who was beginning to fade.

“Ice Water” Foster poured it on with a series of chopping right hands in the ninth to begin widening his lead and punctuated his performance by dropping him with a left hook in the final round. One judge had it 113-114 for Nova, which was overruled by scores of 115-112 and 116-111 for Foster.

Foster said: “I don’t want to make any excuses, but when I went to throw a right hand his elbow hit the middle of my bicep, so it kind of tightened my stuff up. But it’s all good.

“My rhythm was off tonight. It’s all good. We came home with the win, so I can’t complain. I’m a 12-round fighter and I know how to make judgements through the fight. So, he came on strong in the beginning, but I found my rhythm and his timing, and then I started picking it off.

“[Emanuel] Navarrete is busy. I’ll take on Lamont Roach Jr. or the winner of Oscar Valdez-Liam Wilson.”

Nova praised the winner, and was hopeful that he might get a rematch with Foster down the line.

“O’Shaquie is a great fighter,” Nova admitted. “He did hit me, but I did slip [in the 12th round]. I lost my balance. I wasn’t hurt. The fight would have been a draw if that hadn’t happened. This is boxing. I know they probably think I wasn’t that good. But you guys see I’m a great fighter.

“Hopefully you guys can see me here again. I’m a world class contender. O’Shaquie, we can run it back. Let’s do it again. If not, I can fight Navarrete or anybody.”

Foster is now 22-2, 12 KOs. Nova dropped to 23-2, 16 KOs.