Fielding, Saunders, Heffron, Evans Win in Liverpool
Echo Arena, Liverpool - ROCKY FIELDING 9-0 (3) dispatched of Belfast’s Tommy Tolan 4-7 (3) to earn his ninth professional victory and a fourth with Frank Warren. Fielding dominated throughout and will be soon hoping for title opportunities following last March’s Prizefighter success.
A first round clash of heads saw both boxers cut. Despite the injury Fielding got the better in the opening exchanges despite Tolan answered strongly later in the round.
Fielding used his longer reach to his advantage landing with his accurate jabs, but when the 23-year-old got too close Tolan held to prevent the Stockbridge-fighter gaining any real momentum.
The well-supported Liverpudlian started to assert himself a lot more in the third round and found real success with left-right combinations, despite Tolan continuously attempting to stop Fielding getting into any rhythm.
Fielding had his best round so far in the fourth when he caught his Irish opponent with a powerful right hook followed by a precise left jab which almost wobbled the 27-year-old. Fielding continued to use his greater reach and worked his left jab to hold off any attack from Tolan.
‘Rocky from Stocky’ continued to dominate and only a knockout by Tolan going into the final round would change the outcome. Fielding though proved too strong and saw out the fight to score a one-sided points victory.
RONNIE 'RAZOR' HEFFRON 6-0 (3) warmed up for his Central Area title with Chris Johnson match on October 28 with a comfortable points victory over Welsh teenager Tony Pace 0-3.
Heffron had spoke of his desire to be soon fighting for the British title leading up to the fight. With a Central Area fight lined up in two weeks the fighter put in a routine performance; that has impressed many to the point he has been labelled a Lancastrian Ricky Hatton.
The 21-year-old did not exert himself in the fight with only 13 days until his fight with Johnson but showed he had all the tools to rise to the top of the domestic scene.
The Oldham fighter was rarely troubled and when his defence was breached it sparked a mighty response. Heffron seemed be using the fight as a true warm-up exercising all of his strengths against Pace, who seemed off the pace.
'The Snake' held a solid defence but Heffron was happy to let him defend on the inside and work the body before throwing a combination of hooks to hurt his 18-year-old opponent.
Pace hadn't been knocked out in his two professional appearances and he again put up a stern showing against the former ABA champion. Heffron had full control of the bout as Pace struggled with any real reply- his energy spent on withstanding the vast pressure the 21-year-old had him under.
Pace, in the last round, for the first time dropped his defence and took the fight to Heffron forcing the Oldham fighter on to the ropes and landing a succession of jabs. 'Razor' though re-asserted his authority to see out the fight.
'BEEFY' LIAM SMITH 8-0-1 (4 KO's) continued to make up for lost time with a lethal first-round stoppage of Gerard Healy 1-2 in the light-middleweight clash.
The scouse fighter put in the convincing showing in front of his two brothers Stephen and Paul who watched from his corner.
The youngest of the Smith brothers took to the ring four weeks after his last contest as he tries to make his impact on the domestic scene. His progress had been hampered with a broken hand last December which kept him out for nine months.
Smith controlled the centre of the ring from the start and worked at Healey's body. The 23-year-old defeated Barrie Jones in his comeback in September within three rounds but showed he is getting stronger and stronger as he proved too much for Healy.
Smith's pure strength and confrontational style have seen his support rise significantly in the last year; his exciting style will soon get him the British title he deserves. For the meantime 'Beefy' continues to try and make up for lost time and rid his record of the blemish which was that draw with Terry Carruthers last year.
BILLY JOE SAUNDERS 10-0 (7 KO's) continued his remarkable progression with a brutal first round knockout of Hungarian Norbert Szekeres 9-7-3.
Saunders now meets Gary Boulden next month in the rearranged Southern Area middleweight title clash which was scheduled for last June.
The Hertford traveller hadn't fought since he knocked out Kevin Hammond in the second round at the 02 in May but there was no bedding in process as Saunders began to impose himself straight from the off.
After a number of successful combinations Saunders knocked down his Hungarian opponent half way through the first round. Szekeres managed to come through the eight count but Saunders seized on his wobbled opponent. Only the ropes prevented Szekeres from experiencing an immediate return to the floor.
The ropes could not hold the Budapest fighter for too long and Saunders finished the job inside two minutes of the opening bell. The fight was supposed to be a warm up for Boulden in November but the fight only gave practise to the 'Caravan Kid's' killer instinct as he immediately looked for the knockout.
Saunders has shown exciting promise in his first nine fights with Frank Warren and continued the trend against Szekeres. The 22-year-old will be aiming to come through next month's Southern Area title encounter unscathed with both Commonwealth and British titles very much a possibility in 2012.
Saunders had been sounded at by many as a future world champion and he continues to show why, a world title shot is not out of his reach in the next few years.
Craig Evans 5-0 (1 KO) scored a one-sided points victory against Ibrar Riyaz in a super featherweight contest. Evans dominated the fight from the opening bell as he continually got the better of the more-experienced Riyaz.
Evans started the livelier forcing Riyaz onto the ropes in the early exchanges. Riyaz was being troubled by the Welshman's left hook throughout the first round; a late rally from the Albanian-born boxer wasn't enough to change the scorecard.
That late pressure from the journeyman sparked Evans into action during the second round, he began to dominate wearing down his opponent, limiting Riyaz to single bursts of energy often wild swings.
Both fighters slugged out the third with Evans the man who came out successful as they battled for the inside. The 22-year-old had to come through his hardest round in the fourth but capitalised on his opponent's tiredness when he dominated the final minute without reply.
Riyaz caught Evans with a big right shot in the fifth but the promising super-featherweight came through unfazed and continued to dish out further punishment. Evans continued to dominate in the last round successfully landing his combinations against Riyaz who showed plenty of heart to remain in the fight until the final bell.
PAUL BUTLER 5-0 (2 KO's) produced a sensational performance to knockout Arpad Vass 3-2 (2) in the first round having sent the Hungarian to the canvas three times in the first two minutes.
Butler will be hoping this emphatic performance paves the way for a Commonwealth title shot against Nigerian Yaqud Kareem before the end of the year.
It was a miss-match from the opening bell as 'Baby face' Butler went on the offensive and in a matter of second Vass found himself on the canvas. The 24-year-old managed to beat the eight count but was in for more of the same as Butler relentlessly continued to punish his Hungarian counterpart.
The second knockdown again saw Vass return to his feet but a first-round stoppage looked inevitable. The Ellesmere Port boxer did not let his opponent get any foothold in a completely one-sided fight. The referee finally called time on Vass' first appearance since his defeat to Northern Ireland's Luke Wilton when he could not respond to a series of powerful combinations from the impressive Butler.
TOBIAS WEBB 7-1-1 narrowly edged out Jahmaine Smyle 6-1-1 (1 KO) in a hard-fought six round battle.
Webb showed plenty of heart to defeat Smyle for a second time in five months, after suffering a cut in round three, to fight back and score the victory in a close-fought contest.
Both had met back in march in the semi-final of the super-middleweight Prizefighter. It was a close decision that night and there was plenty of respect shown in the first round as the fight began evenly both finding success but defences came out on top. Smyle started to get the upper-hand in the second round with Webb finding the Leicester-based fighter’s right hand difficult to handle.
The Welshman began to battle back against ‘Smasher’ Smyle but his resurgence was halted momentarily by a cut above his eye mid-way through the third round. In a momentum-swinging fourth both fighters seemed to be hurting the other but the Swansea fighter edged the round.
The start of the fifth was halted due to a referee inspection on Webb’s cut but after the officials approval the 23-year-old continued his fight back after being edged out in the opening rounds. Webb used his jab successfully in round six which ultimately impressed the judges, while Smyle threw more Webb’s solid defence and counter-jab proved to be the difference.