TV KILLED THE SMALL HALL STAR? REPORT
The whole show had a really unusual running order for fights, with big ticket sellers on after the show went off air and people who they have been promoting and building up for the last 8 weeks on very early.
In place of Eubank, David Avanesyan faced Liam Taylor for the EBU European Welterweight Title (held by Avanesyan). Avanesyan is an absolute beast- his last 5 fights have all been KO wins, would he have a 6th to follow against Taylor? You bet your sweet ass he will as he dropped Taylor with a short right hook towards the end of the first round, Taylor was saved by the bell as the Russian was piling on the pressure.
Avanesyan was just walking his man down in the second and landing some really hurtful shots, but fair play to Liam Taylor he was fighting back bravely; but his bravery wasn’t enough as David’s work rate was too much. The champion was working the body and throwing hooks and uppercuts to Taylor’s face. Avanesyan finished it off with a double left uppercut and a right hook to the head. The ref jumped in and stopped Liam Taylor from taking any more punishment. And still the EBU European Champion, David Avanesyan.
Promoters Wassermann must really rate bantamweight Ebonie Jones to leave her on so late in the card and give her a great TV spot, but after the first round it was easy to see why. Of all of the fights of the night I was most impressed by the lady from Portsmouth making her debut. Vaida Masiokaite was much taller and older by a decade than Jones, but Jones showed that my misses had been lying to me; size really didn’t seem to matter, that will make a lot of men happy to hear.
Ebonie’s head movement was a joy to watch and her left hook to the body followed by the left hook to the head was a combination she used throughout and couldn’t miss with it. She actually reminds me of a female Razor Ali- they have very similar styles. I’m not sure what round the ref gave to Vaida Masiokaite as I had it a shout out win for Jones, the ref scored it 55-59 for misses, misses Jones. I’ve since called out the winner Ebonie for some sparring on Twitter as she’s around my weight class.
The whole show was a weird set up from start to finish and to have the exciting, heavy hitter and big ticket seller, super welterweight Joe “The Pig” Pigford on after it went off air was a strange one to me. Joe was aggressive and dominant from the start, dropping Isaac Aryee in the second round with a big left hook, right hook combination. Isaac Aryee was brave and started to fight back but took two big right uppercuts simultaneously for his troubles.
Despite this, Isaac Aryee started the third round really well, landing a couple of good right hands to the chin of Pigford but Joe soon put a stop to that with a rocket launcher jab which sent Aryee flying back. In the fifth Joe landed a big right hand, Isaac took a step back and went down on one knee and didn’t want to get back up as the power from Pigford lives up to expectation and Aryee didn’t want to know anymore.
My good friend and gym mate Razor Ali had opponent Stefan Nicolae who was a good test and was clearly there to win the fight. But Ali’s razor sharp head movement (ah see what I did there) and combination punching was too much for the man from Romania. Ali landed a strong right upper cut in the second round and started to let his hands go as he knew he had hurt his man. Razor continued to march forward but took two massive hooks off Stefan Nicolae but with an iron chin and a body like a Greek God this was nothing to Ali who continued to keep up the Pace.
After round four it seemed Nicolae’s will was broken and he didn’t want to engage with the man they call Razor anymore and was just happy to cover up and hear the final bell. All around great performance from razor and arguably fight of the night, Ali took all of it on the Ref’s scorecard 60-54.
As Vrenozi took his eight count, Linus stepped forward; cool, calm and collected while picking his shots and waiting for his moment. Then the Luton man found the uppercut again which backed his opponent up onto the ropes, then Linus started to unload with shots and the Albanian’s team threw in the towel and surrendered their man. A third round TKO for my Goodwin Boxing stablemate.
Big cruiserweight Richard Riakporhe took the stage and started great, countering Krzysztof Twardowski’s jab leaning back and throwing a right hand over the top. Then the pace seemed to slow down but Riakporhe remained in control throughout. In the eighth and last round Twardowski came to give it a go, pushing Riakporhe back and as he landed two heavy shots to the body. Riakporhe was suddenly on the back foot and looking down at the ground but threw a monstrous right hook which sent Twardowski down to the ground. Somehow Krzysztof got up and fought on very bravely. It ended 79-72 to Riakporhe.
Germaine Brown versus Jamal Le Doux was an eliminator for the English Super Middleweight Title. Not much happened for the first couple of rounds, it was a bit of a scrappy affair. Brown seemed to be throwing more punches on the inside which may have given him the early rounds but both couldn’t really find their range.
As the fight went on Brown looked to be the stronger man and was imposing his dominance on the inside and started to find home with some big shots. That’s not saying Le Doux didn’t have his moments because he did land some nice punches of his own but it was hard to give him rounds. The (scoring) Ref saw it the same as I did: 99-92 to Germaine Brown.
Mikael Lawal and Benoit Huber opened the show. The two looked pretty evenly matched, the man from Sweden had an unusual style. He was very long and gangly, dropping his hands and kept waving Lawal forward. Mikael landed a couple good right hands towards the end of the second round but then in the third Huber started really fast though took a massive over hand right. Wrongly the Ref immediately jumped in to stop the fight. One of the worst stoppages I’ve seen in all my time boxing.
The night itself was good solely because we made it good. The upgrade was a treat for us as fans. Every fight which could have gone somewhere was ended too soon though. Maybe I'm too used to York Hall with fight after fight and no gaps but I feel TV spoiled Wasserman and Boxxer's debut which was a shame.