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There are a few things to catch up on as I spent the weekend around the isle of Islay so here goes…
Deontay Wilder broke his hand and the heart of Chris Arreola as he stopped him – literally – with one hand behind his back after the 8th round. It was a massive statement from Wilder and those who thought he might be a paper champion had that assessment ripped up right in front of their faces. There is a long period of recuperation for a broken hand a torn muscle in Wilder’s right arm but he has cemented his reputation whilst proving to many he should be feared.
In the UK and in Cardiff, middleweight Tommy Langford retained both his unbeaten record and the WBO intercontinental middleweight title against Timo Laine by stoppage. Super welterweights Liam Williams and Gary Corcoran served up their grudge match with added spice for the Commonwealth and British titles with Williams stopping Corcoran late on. Welterweight Bradley Skeete won the WBO European welterweight title against Alexandre Lepelley as he managed to stop Lepelley.
Lightweight Terry Flanagan got the win over Mzonke Fana to defend his WBO belt. All 3 judges scored it 120 – 106 in Flanagan’s favour so not a very close contest!
Guillermo Rigondeaux, the master of the ring stopped James Dickens for the WBA super, super bantamweight belt after the 2nd round. Having broken Dicken’s jaw, Rigondeaux claimed the stoppage thanks to the Liverpudlian’s corner throwing in the towel. It was a massive opportunity for Dickens but one which was several steps too far. He came out it with many plaudits, not least from the Champion himself, but no belts.
On the same night Lightweight Joe Murray was back in action in Manchester against Ibrar Rayiz and got himself a points win.
On Wednesday the 20th July, in Osaka, Japan the vacant IBF super bantamweight title, vacated by Carl Frampton was decided between Shingo Wake and Jonathan Guzman. Guzman took the belt from Wake in an 11th round knockout. Having stopped Wake he clearly was unable to stop thieves from pilfering a substantial amount of cash as he then had $70,000 stolen from him at the airport!
Last Saturday the 23rd of July, heavyweight Dorian Darch got a decent points win against David Howe in Merthyr Tydfil whilst over in the good old US of A light welterweights Terence Crawford and Viktor Postol went head to head for the WBO and WBC crowns. It was a very one sided contest with Crawford walking off with the victory on points, the scores were 118-107, 118-107, 117-108.
This weekend is a massive one for UK boxing as we have a great fight in the States alongside a monster Eddie Hearn bill in Leeds. Of the Stateside issue more later… but Leeds!!!
The man who took out Willie Limond in Glasgow last time out Tyrone Nurse goes in against popular local, Tommy Coyle to defend his British super lightweight belt again. Nurse is a very special fighter though Coyle has more heart than the average boxer. It is a cracking contest and whilst I think Nurse shall shade it, I expect this could just be the fight of the night as Coyle, much to the delight of Nurse’s trainer and father, will not let Nurse fanny about.
Luke Campbell MBE also has a tough night ahead as he faces Argenis Mendez for the vacant WBC silver lightweight title. He has his previous loss much in his head and that might be a mistake as he takes on a very durable former world champion. I still think Campbell will win but again it’s a very tough ask. Matchroom should be applauded for the calibre of the bill so far…
Gamal Yafai finds himself in against Josh Wale for the Commonwealth title at super bantamweight. This ought to be a decent fight but Yafai is heavily fancied and I can see nothing to argue with that. Dillian Whyte hopes to continue his ascent in the heavyweight rankings as he takes on the very decent David Allen. Both have 1 loss on their records though Whyte could claim that to be more impressive as he did take Anthony Joshua to new heights. I think Whyte will want to get this upstart, in his eyes, out there quickly so an early stoppage for me. We also have Ryan Burnett going for the WBC international bantamweight title against Cesar Ramirez and this is a great fight; Burnett just for me! In a very packed bill that just keeps on giving we also have welterweight Sam Eggington taking on Daza Usher and welterweight Frankie Gavin in against Ivo Gogosevic. Both are there to keep busy so both should record wins.
The headline act is the Josh Warrington/Patrick Hyland scrap. Like Campbell, Warrington is taking on a guy with one hell of a pedigree and also like Campbell is perhaps getting the guy at the right time – he is on his way down and not up. The fact that Hyland did not make the weight means that the WBC international featherweight belt is off the table for him but this will mean nothing when the first bell goes. Following this we shall hopefully see a world title chance for Warrington but his lack of punching power might be an issue tonight. I am going for a Warrington win on points.
In Rotherham we have middleweight Sam Sheedy back in action in amongst 7 other contests whilst at York Hall there are no fewer than 5 debuts in amongst 18 fights; I sometimes wonder if they start in the morning with these massive bills…
And now the Sates. We have Carl Frampton taking on Leo Santa Cruz for the WBA featherweight title. This is a massive fight for the Jackal and one I think he may shade. There are plenty who think Santa Cruz will win but I am not one of them. This shall not be easy but I do expect a very different Frampton form the one who beat Scott Quigg – Quigg is hankering after a rematch…
On the undercard we have Micky Garcia against Elio Rojas – win for Garcia for me; Pauli Malignaggi against Gabriel Bracero – win for the Italian European champ from the US for me; and an IBF super welterweight eliminator between Sergey Rabchenko and Tony Harrison.
Rabchenko’s trainer, Ricky Hatton has been sending out warnings to the Tony Harrison camp before their fight. Rabchenko is a rugged guy who could cause a wee bit of an upset against Harrison. Huge puncher, Rabchenko could walk away with an unlikely win and be back in with world honours soon.
Saturday the 6th August sees York Hall host heavyweight Dominic Akinlade up against an unknown opponent for the Southern Area title. There are 12 other fights on the menu including 5 debuts!