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U.S. boxer Duke Ragan advances to men's featherweight gold medal final

Duke Ragan of the United States (L) on Tuesday advanced to the men's featherweight (52-57kg) gold medal bout. Photo by Rungrou Yongrit/EPA-EFE
Duke Ragan of the United States (L) on Tuesday advanced to the men's featherweight (52-57kg) gold medal bout. Photo by Rungrou Yongrit/EPA-EFE

Aug. 2 (UPI) -- American featherweight boxer Duke Ragan has advanced to the Olympic gold medal bout after besting Samuel Takyi in Tokyo on Tuesday.

Ragan, 23, won by points in a split 4-1 decision at Tokyo's Kokugikan Arena in a fight that saw him strong and measured against a more kinetic and flashy Takyi.

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The American solidified his win in the third and final round with solid punches on target that Takyi failed to find an answer for.

The bout opened, however, with Takyi in the blue trunks taking the first round 3-2 on a strong finish after Ragan in the red seemed to have bested the Ghanan early.

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The second round saw the reverse with Takyi coming out strong and gaining points that fed a swagger visibly noticeable in his stance, which remained even as Ragan landed solid rights as the frame came to an end.

It was a decisive 4-1 card in Ragan's favor.

In the final round, Ragan came out fast, picking up points early that put him in a good position and forced Takyi to taking risks as the bout came to an end.

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The split decision sends the Ghanan, who died his hair gold to match the medal he sought to win, to the bronze medal match, while guaranteeing that Ragan will either come home with a gold or silver medal around his neck.

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The men's feather final bout is to be held Thursday. Ragan will be facing the winner of the feather semifinal between Cuba's Lazaro and Russia Alert Batyrgaziev that is to be held later Tuesday.

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