Stuey Hall Impressive, Stops John Donnelly To Retain
Stuart Hall retained his British bantamweight title - getting a Lonsdale belt to keep in the process - with an impressive stoppage win over John Donnelly.
Hall - who only turned pro three years ago - proved too big and too powerful for his opponent at the Rainton Meadows Arena in Houghton-le-Spring.
Donnelly looked wobbly in the first round and was down for a first time in the fourth after being caught right before the bell by a superb upper cut.
Having dominated throughout behind his steel-like jab that couldn't miss, Hall decided to pile on the pressure in the next round to bring about an early finish.
The 31-year-old from Darlington had Donnelly - who was already sporting a cut over his left eye - down again midway through the fifth.
This time, though, there was no bell to spare the challenger from further punishment. Having convinced referee Phil Edwards he was okay to continue, the official was forced to step in when he came under fire again.
"I just stuck to the game plan, stayed behind the jab, and I got him in the end," a delighted Hall - who is now 11-0 - told Sky Sports.
"This is my world title - it's just unbelievable that I've got this for the rest of my life. It's such an achievement for Darlington and the north east."
The champion also made no secret of who he wanted to fight next, calling out current European champion Jamie McDonnell.
"I think I'm ready for Jamie McDonnell now - if he wants a fight then let's get it on," he added. "He's the man I want next.
"If he doesn't fight me then he's going to have to give up that belt, because I want it."
McDonnell, who was watching on from ringside, seemed less keen for a domestic dust-up later on this year.
"For me, that's a backward step," insisted the reigning European and Commonwealth belt holder. "He's ranked number 21 or 22 by the WBC - I'm ranked No.9. Why would I come back down to fight him?
"But if (my promoter) Dennis Hobson thinks that's a fight I need to move my career onto the next level, then we'll get that fight on. I've never shied out of a fight yet.
Asked on what the outcome would be if he did fight Hall, McDonnell added: "Hall makes a lot of mistakes and I think I would punish him."
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