So last weekend on Saturday the 11th of May it was the turn of US audiences to be shocked by results as little fancied and mighty humble, Julian Williams beat unbeaten, until then, Jarrett Hurd for the WBA, IBF and IBO titles at super welterweight in Fairfax on points. On the way Hurd suffered the very first knock down of his career and whilst his career remains an impressive one, he will be hurting and trying to work out his next steps. Williams, coming into the fight with one defeat – to Jermall Charlo – was as gracious in victory as Hurd was in defeat. His message from the ring was also very clear and one for our age when he said, “The boxing world should stop condemning fighters after they take a loss. It’s boxing, things happen. Plenty of great fighters took losses.”
In Tucson super featherweight Miguel Berchelt retained his WBC title against Francisco Vargas with a 6th round stoppage as Vargas’ trainer felt forced to throw in the towel to stop his fighter taking any more punishment. Berchelt had given Vargas a rematch to try and get his title back but the rematch just confirmed what the first fight had suggested.
The WBO super bantamweight title stayed with Emanuel Navarrete who also proved that his first win over Isaac Dogboe was no fluke as he repeated it. It was a TKO in the 12th round and now Dogboe will have to return to London toreally work out his next steps. He was a highly fancied fighter when he took to the ring in the first fight and lauded due to a fairy tale like backstory, but if Jarrett Hurd needs to learn lessons after a defeat it might do well to look at where Dogboe got it wrong.
Over in Germany, in Magdeburg there was a further shock as the EBU super middleweight title between Robin Krasniqi and Stefan Haertel saw Haertel walk out with the belt. It was anotherpoints win for the challenger and, like Williams in Fairfax, hardly expected. It may not have the same traction as beating Jarrett Hurd but Haertel shall be looking beyond the European shores for his next battle, I am sure.
Domestically in Brentwood super lightweight Harlem Eubank returned to successfully beat Eligio Palacios on points.
It leaves last night and in a week where there have been a measure of surprises all round, on Friday the 17th of May in Belfast super featherweight Marco McCullough beat Declan Geraghty for the IBF European belt in a 3rd round knockout that will do the rounds on social media as it was a cracker. The surprise was the way in which it ended as most expected it at least to go the distance.
On the same bill the WBC international strap was won, this time unsurprisingly by Ryan Burnett who stopped Jelbirt Gomera in the 6th round of a scheduled 10. I hoped they would both be worthy scraps in Belfast and they appear to have turned out just that way!