defend verb

1 protect against attack

PREP. against

PHRASES heavily defended The city was heavily defended against attack.

2 support

ADV. fiercely, hotly, robustly, staunchly, stoutly, strenuously, strongly, vigorously The company has strenuously defended its decision to reduce the workforce. | publicly

PREP. against She defended her department against accusations of incompetence.

3 in sport/competitions

ADV. successfully

PREP. against The champion successfully defended his title against the American challenger.