Free to watch Boxing aired live on Channel 5, as a host of exciting talent made their presence known on Wasserman Boxing's show at the o2 Indigo. The significant exposure of terrestrial TV was definitely grabbed with both hands during the main event, and highlight of the night, in an admiral back and forth tough battle between Luton’s unbeaten Linus Udofia and Battersea’s former champion, Denzel Bentley for the vacant British Middleweight Title.

In a tight first round a quick pace was set by both men but Bentley appeared to be slightly physically stronger, reinforced by his successful inside work from Bentley as the fight went into deep waters. Udofia possessed a dangerous upper-cut and had the better of his opponent in the second, but the tide kept turning in the contest as Bentley unloaded upon the inside of Udofia in the latter stages of the third working within the clinches cleverly.

The battle of the jabs commenced but the calculated Bentley kept maneuvering himself into close quarters which is where he’s at his best. The seventh round saw Udofia get caught against the ropes after excellent, sustained output from Bentley which was only improved on in the eighth as Udofia nearly touched the canvas and was out on his feet for a few seconds. Despite this Udofia continued firing back and was still a live opponent not appearing to be phased at all.

Bentley, after a lot of energy was used in offense had taken a breather, allowing Udofia to take advantage and grind him down. Everything was on the line going into the last for all the glory. Udofia became evasive in the twelfth and Bentley hunted him down. Both fighters raised their hands respectively at the end of a tough and entertaining fight.

Denzel Bentley prevailed out of the pair in a close split decision (115-113, 116-112, 114-115)  and the fight most definitely lived up to the hype around it. Both fighters were in impeccable shape, giving it their all and more than worthy of contesting for the prestigious Lonsdale belt, won by so many British legends, etched in history.

Udofia will come again with the knowledge and experience that he can now complete the full twelve  rounds. Bentley deservedly will enjoy this victory against a talented opponent.

picture courtesy Scott Rawsthorne/ Unknown Boxers @unknown_boxers
Another very competitive fight on the night was Brad Pauls versus Ryan Kelly and you would expect nothing less in a British Title eliminator bout. Perhaps the Terry Steward trained man in Pauls could even avenge his middleweight stable mate Linus Udofia down the line. Throughout the fight it really was a fifty-fifty match-up and it could have been a case of who tired first.

Pauls was the bigger man and had a better first half of the fight compared to the later stages as Kelly grew into the fight. Immense heart from both fighters was displayed for everyone to witness as an all-out war occurred in the final round. Brad Pauls had done just enough picking up the split decision win (96-94, 96-95, 93-97).

Also on the card was Harlem Eubank, who won by an impressive single punch KO over Sean Dodd in the second round which extended Eubanks unbeaten record to 14-0-0. Eubank, without a doubt, will certainly be looking to step up in class as he navigates his way through the super-lightweight division, and a highlight reel knockout will only help his ventures.

Welterweight Constantin Ursu knocked his opponent down in the first round with a lethal body shot and looked extremely impressive throughout his bout. The opponent, Borja Lopez was one tough cookie as he went down again in the third from more thunderous body blows. The four rounder ended in a points victory 40-34 in Ursu’s favour. Constantin Ursu will be one to watch as this was only his fifth professional fight.

Harvey Horn returned to action, coming back from his defeat at York Hall back in November and he had an easy night's work controlling the distance in a shutout points victory 60-54 over Alejandro Torres at flyweight.

Featherweight Razor Ali also won on points in his six rounder (60-54) but knocked down his opponent in the last round and was very unlucky as the referee didn’t call it, possibly due to the tangling off each other’s feet, but it was hard to make out why the referee didn’t call a knockdown.

Earlier on in the night Daniel Morley won by TKO in the fourth of his welterweight contest, showcasing quick hands and a tidy combination to finish his opponent. Katharina Thanderz followed in the fight after, with a win on her return to the ring after a stint of inactivity since her defeat to Terri Harper back in 2020.

One negative and quite bizarre situation of the night led to Josh Kelly’s fight falling through at the last minute due to an issue with and refusal to participate from his opponent.

The night came to an end with an aura of satisfaction from boxing fans, but one thing I would like to see built upon is more of the undercard being shown on the TV channel rather than a YouTube stream to maximise their exposure to what the fighters deserve.


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