Tyson Fury overcame horrendous cuts to his right eye to take a unanimous decision over Otto Wallin in a bruising heavyweight encounter in Las Vegas.
Fury suffered at least one of the cuts in Round 3 that the referee judged was the result of a punch from Wallin as opposed to a clash of heads that could have resulted in the fight being declared a "no contest".
Despite the impediment, Fury landed much the cleaner shots, and was in total control from Round 7 onwards to inflict a first defeat of Wallin with all three judges awarding the Englishman the fight, 116-112, 117-111 and 118-110.
"I haven't seen the cut, it feels quite bad, but I'm the Gypsy Warrior. It's all heart and determination. If I can keep going, I will keep going," said Fury, 31, who extended his career record to 29 wins with one draw.
"It was a great fight, I got caught on the eye and that changed the fight.
"For the majority I could not see out of the eye. Then there was a clash of heads and I got cut again. A good 12 rounds. He was tough."
Fury donned a sombrero and poncho as he played to the "local" crowd for his second appearance in Las Vegas on Mexican Independence Day weekend.
The Mancunian has embraced the Mexican theme all week but he ramped it up with his ringwalk for the fight against unfancied Swede Wallin.
After sizing up his opponent for the first round, Fury missed with a wild right in the second, allowing his opponent to back him into a corner.
Fury then suffered the first cut in Round 3. The deep gash and steady stream of blood caused Fury problems throughout the fight, and prompted the referee to call the ringside doctor to inspect the cut at the end of Round 6 before Fury was allowed to carry on.
The cut would have finished off many fighters, but Fury, for all his fleetness of foot and punch accuracy, showed that he can dig deep into reserves of courage when he needs to.
Wallin constantly targeted the right eye of his damaged opponent with his fists and any other body part able to inflict damage, with Fury urging the referee several times to "watch the head" of his Swedish opponent as he charged in to exchanges.
Fury was all jokes and laughs in the buildup but it was no laughing matter now as he got down to regaining control of proceedings just past the halfway stage.
He landed two big right hands in the seventh, one which rocked Wallin back onto the ropes, and a few more punches found their target in the eighth and ninth.
The Swede looked to be tiring and was hanging on at the end of the ninth. As he entered the final rounds Wallin sensed, correctly, that he was behind on the judges' scorecards. He trudged forward intent on landing bombs, and connected a big left in the final round, but for the most part succeeded only in tasting Fury's gloves as the Englishman picked him off.
Both men were covered in blood at the final bell before Fury was awarded the fight by all three the judges.
Ever the showman, Fury wasted little time in goading his next opponent.
"Deontay Wilder, I want you next, bum!" yelled Fury, who announced in July that he would face the WBC heavyweight champion in early 2020 in a rematch of their epic December encounter that ended in a draw.
"That's my fourth fight [since facing Wilder]; it has put me in good stead for the big dosser, February 22nd. Let the cut heal, have some time to relax with the family."
For Wallin it was a first defeat in 21 pro bouts, but the Swede was satisfied with his performance in front of a packed 20,000 crowd at T-Mobile Arena.
"I did everything I could, I tried my best and Tyson is a great champion," said Wallin. "I tried to hit it [the cut] even more, I was happy he was cut, I wish I could've hit it even more.
"Nobody can question my heart or question that I'm a good fighter."