by Alexey Sukachev
Ravenscraig Sports Centre, Motherwell, Scotland - Anthony Crolla (23-2, 9KOs) won a dominating twelve round unanimous decision over Willie Limond (34-4, 8KOs) in a British lightweight title clash. Crolla easily outboxed and outworked Limond in every single round. All three judges scored it a full shutout - 120-108.
Limond easily gave up the first seven rounds and didn't start pushing himself until the eight. Between several of the rounds, Limond was actually trading words with his cornermen, who were obviously upset with his workrate and performance. In a very strange happening, the lights went out in the entire arena during the seventh round. It took a minute or two before the lights were restored. The fighters were exchanging at close range when the blackout took place, but neither boxer was affected by the lights going out.
Less than a month after his upset loss to Bulgarian Alexey Ribchev, former Commonwealth light middleweight champion Matthew Hall (24-4, 16 KOs) came back into contention by winning a BBBofC 154lb eliminator over previously undefeated Scottsman Kris Carslaw (14-1, 3 KOs).
Hall, the physically a stronger fighter of the two, worked as the aggressor, while smoothly punching Carlsaw, who utilized his footwork and fine technics to avoid dangers in the ring. At first glance, it looked like the local boy would pull it out but Hall gradually fought himself back into the fight by working off Carslaw's body. The Scottish fighter tried to fight off the ropes and to heat the already roaring audience but Hall's punishment was getting to him. Hall clearly took the first half of the fight, while Carslaw did his best to mount a comeback down the stretch but his feather-fists had very little to the tougher and harder-punching Hall.
Carslaw took punches well but Hall was close to something significant in championship rounds but failed to get a decisive victory. However, all three judges awarded the bout to Matthew Hall: 96-94 (twice) and 97-95. BoxingScene had it a bit wider: 98-93 - also for Hall.
Former amateur standout Stephen Simmons (3-0, 1 KO) failed to score his second career knockout and was forced to go the distance with veteran John Anthony (7-21-1, 5 KOs) in a cruiserweight fight. Simmons pressed the action all the night but Anthony took his punches well and, despite clearly losing the fight, tried hard to answer back, not without some mild success. The sole score was 60-55 - for Simmons. The local boy was first scheduled to fight upset-minded Hastings Rasani.
24-year old Scottish/Filipino light middleweight John Thain (5-0, 1 KO) easily outpointed trialhorse Steve Spence (2-12-2, 1 KO) over four rounds. The sole score was 40-36 - for the lanky local fighter of Filipino origin.