Sweltering outside and in, as Goodwin Boxing's nine fight show went along, York Hall got progressively louder and its greenhouse effect removed fluid from the bodies of all in attendance. Adrian Martin, the former Southern Area middleweight challenger who was commentating with me, observed that the heat drains fighters and makes stoppages more likely. He was proved correct, as later on the bill became more ferocious and featured two fights with a lot on the line which finished early.

The two fights sharing main event status were Paul Brown and Jack Owen contesting the vacant Southern Area Light Heavyweight Title and George Hennon's English Super Lightweight eliminator against Ben Fields.

At 33, Paul Brown had said before the fight that win or lose he was retiring. The Ramsgate man wants to focus on his family and saying goodbye to boxing with a belt would be an excellent way to bow out. His 7-0-0 (0) record and Jack Owen's 5-0-2 (0) featured no losses but also were devoid of any early victories. The Southern Area Title has a habit of proving good entertainment, not least because it's often the first time either boxer has faced someone as desperate to win as them.

Bromley's Owen, at 28, is the younger man and more active fighter. He had the better of the early rounds and had the southpaw Brown sagging on the ropes in the second. It wasn't a knockdown but Owen swaggered back to his corner at the end of the stanza.

Brown battled back in the third, catching Owen repeatedly with his southpaw straight. Owen though marched forward, the bit between his teeth. Neither man displayed much in the way of technical nuance, swinging away and missing often, but you couldn't fault their desire and energy. Brown was just too often second best in the exchanges and began to wilt in the third.

In the fourth he was rocked against the ropes, trapped in his corner covering up but Owen's onslaught was ceaseless and after staggering across the ring, spent and ready for the canvas, referee Reece Carter wisely stepped in and ended the fight at 1:57 of the fourth.

Adrian Martin, who now fights at light heavy and should have been contesting this belt late last year, was licking his lips at the prospect of fighting the winner; "Shark food", he said.

In a total reverse of his sensible decision in saving Paul Brown, in the very next fight Reece Carter got it badly wrong. George Hennon, the 28 year old who came with an army of fans decked in yellow t-shirts, was dropped twice in the first round by Digbeth's Ben Fields. Fields is 33 and has a losing record, but he was the bigger man and the more destructive puncher, it quickly became clear.

Hennon should never have been allowed to fight on from the second knockdown; he just about got up but his legs and head were not talking, as he danced a drunken jig across the apron. Carter, God knows why (perhaps Hennon's loud support), allowed Hennon to stagger back in and on to Field's fists. Seconds later Hennon was out cold on his back, worryingly motionless for a few seconds. An excellent win for Fields, who is now 12-13-4 (1).

Hennon slips to 8-2-0 (2), and has been stopped in both his losses. Carter, one hopes, will not make that mistake again.

Light heavyweights Timon Douglin and Dylan Courtney put on an excellent four rounds of action. Douglin's faster hands and shot variety had Courtney hurt more than once, but the Cornish man taunted and waved him in. Cruder and slower, Courtney nonetheless put on a dogged display, though lost every, competitive round. His 40-36 victory improves Douglin the 4-0-0 (0), Courtney stands at 2-2-2 (1).

Another away fighter who wanted to showboat and grin in the face of leather aimed at his head was heavyweight Phil Williams, 6-46-1 (1). He did take the first round over Lewis Oakford, 3-0-0 (0), but the High Wycombe cruiserweight, fighting up a weight here, grew into the bout and took a 39-37 win.
Jerome Campbell won almost every second of every round, except for when he was dropped, or rather dipped, to the canvas by former flyweight Christian Navarez in round two of four. Super featherweight Campbell wasn't hurt but his Nicaraguan nemesis swarmed him for a few seconds. The nuances of the ten point must system are such that it has to be assumed that was given as 10-8. Navarez was then given a share in another by referee Sean McAvoy and a 38-38 draw was announced, to some surprise at ringside. I had it 38-37 to Campbell, now 7-1-1 (1). Navarez is 17-63-7 (2).

Tall super lightweight Albano Junior used his fast hands to good effect against former English Super Bantamweight challenger Liam Richards. He's on the road now, Richards, but has only been stopped once in 102 fights. Junior had him down in the second but he recovered and made the end. 4-0-0 (0) the 26 year old adds another loss to Richards' 12-89-0 (1) record, 40-35.

Sher Khan moved to 4-0-0 (0) with a 39-37 win at super lightweight over 5-20-1 (1) Karl Sampson. Also at super lightweight, Pat Gill, 5-0-1 (0) landed some thudding body shots on Michael Mooney, though Mooney did make him miss a bit. Welterweight Hamza Butt won his debut, looking composed with a 40-36 victory over prolific road warrior Fonz Alexander, who has fought an average 17 times a year over his nine year career. Alexander's record might be 8-146-1 (4), but he had more stoppage wins than any other fighter on the show.

A sweltering night of fights where the atmosphere and intensity of the fights increased until it was brutally, abruptly ended with a swing of Ben Field's fist and George Hennon's crash landing on the canvas.


Popular Posts