Leigh Wood is an English professional boxer who has held the WBA featherweight title since May 2023. At the regional level, he held the Commonwealth featherweight title in 2019 and the British featherweight title in 2021.
On February 22, 2014, Wood faced Gavin McDonnell for the British super bantamweight title. The bout was stopped in the sixth round as a result of Wood’s startled state and unable to defend himself. After winning the first five rounds, Wood put up a spectacular performance and took command of the fight.
However, Wood had to cut weight before the fight to stay within the bout’s weight limit, and after a few rounds, Wood started to lose energy. Following his defeat to McDonnell, Wood faced Martin Mubiru in a rematch. He performed well and won via third-round TKO.
Then, after 3 more fights and 3 more victories at featherweight, he improved his skill level and boxed Josh Wale, the opponent who had forced his former adversary to a draw in a contest for the British crown. Wood outboxed Josh Wale for the bulk of the fight, winning it on all three judges’ scorecards in the final two of the ten rounds with eye-catching combinations and potent right hands.
Wood’s following match was a rematch with Lee Glover, who had defeated him in the amateurs seven years earlier, for the featherweight title of the Midlands Area.[Reference needed] Wood started the first round of pot-shooting, forcing Glover to miss before delivering some powerful blows just before the bell.
The second round continued in the same manner, with Wood ultimately halting Glover with a powerful left and a well-timed barrage of punches, putting Glover to the canvas and preventing the score from being called.
On March 2, 2019, Wood competed against Abraham Osei Bonsu for the vacant Commonwealth featherweight championship. He dispatched Bonsu easily, winning by knockout in the second round. On May 10, 2019, Wood faced former Commonwealth featherweight champion Ryan Doyle in his maiden title defence.
The WBA once more instructed Wood and Santa Cruz to start contract talks for a title consolidation fight on September 30.
On December 12, Santa Cruz gave up his championship, leaving Wood as the only reigning champion in the class. After the match with Santa Cruz was cancelled, Wood was scheduled to defend his featherweight championship against Mauricio Lara. The altercation happened on February 18, 2023.
Near the conclusion of the seventh round, a left hook brought Wood to the ground. Although he managed to get to his feet quickly enough to beat the ten count, his trainer Ben Davison gave up six seconds before the round’s conclusion.
On May 27, 2023, Wood was scheduled to face Mauricio Lara in Manchester Arena for the WBA featherweight championship.
Lara was disqualified from keeping the belt after she failed to make weight by 3.8 lbs at the official weigh-ins, leaving only Wood qualified to take its place. With two scorecards of 118-109 and one scorecard of 116-111, Wood won the vacant title by a unanimous vote.
How Tall is Leigh Wood?
Leigh Wood stands 5 ft 7 in (170 cm). Wood is ranked as the world’s second-best active featherweight by BoxRec, sixth by The Ring magazine, and seventh by the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board.