IT WAS QUITE some night at the fighting cauldron otherwise known as the Telford International Centre on Saturday.

It really is a top venue to watch boxing and the fans were out in force, as usual.

They were treated to a strong contender for ‘fight of the year’ between Andrew Cain and Ionut Baluta and I would like to place on record my admiration for both fighters, who truly delivered a thrilling spectacle.

Truth be told, I believe Andrew won the fight and can consider himself hard done by, by the scoring judges. I felt there was a third knockdown not counted by the referee and, even without that, I don’t feel Ionut did quite enough to really turn the tables after a 10-7 opening round.

Of course, we have since learned that Andrew fought from the first round onwards with a busted hand which, with hindsight, certainly appeared to alter the dynamics of the fight. In saying all this I am not taking anything away from the heroics of Ionut, I am just offering up my honest verdict on what I watched.

Andrew will be feeling sore in more ways than one at the moment, but he has nothing to reproach himself for and the experience he has gained will be valuable moving forward.

I know he has to do his thing inside the ring but, for my part, I will move heaven and earth to make him a world champion. I truly believe in his ability and he is definitely a major attraction for the fans.

We will have to see how quickly his hand heals up and then make a decision on a rematch. I would like Andrew to make his mind up on what weight he wants to campaign at and stick to it, rather than considering hopping down to bantamweight and then moving up again.

You lose all momentum with titles and rankings by jumping around the weights and it is ultimately a pointless exercise. Hopefully we get to do the Baluta rematch and I think this is the ideal fight to do up in Liverpool, where we can build on his successes, along with Nick Ball, Brad Strand, James Heneghan and Callum Thompson.

These boys give us some solid foundations to reignite the fight scene for us in Liverpool.

I was delighted for Nathan Heaney and his merry band of followers after his great rematch victory over Jack Flatley. More and more Nathan is looking the part and, quite honestly, he would be a match for most in the middleweights.

I heard his references to being labelled ‘bang average’ but the thing about Nathan is he gets the very best out of himself and improves fight on fight. I think sometimes there is a tendency to downplay the progress of fighters who enjoy a bumper following, with the suspicion being that they are only showcased due to ticket sales.

That is not a fair assumption. Nathan is a consummate professional who works extremely hard on both his game and building his fanbase. He does things right and his efforts should not be downplayed. If anything, young fighters should look to him for inspiration over what is possible in this sport.

Now we’ve got to work towards delivering Nathan the big fight he wants in his home city and nobody will be more deserving of a spectacular homecoming.

THERE WAS PLENTY of debate across the boxing media last week over Tyson Fury’s undisputed fight against Oleksandr Usyk falling by the wayside.

I acknowledge and share the disappointment of fight fans because it is something we have spent months working towards. I know people like to play the blame game in situations like this and Tyson is getting the brunt of it in some quarters.

But the fact remains, Tyson was good to go and ready to fight at Wembley on April 29. It was Usyk who pulled the plug, probably when it became clear that Tyson was not bluffing about being fighting fit to deliver some capital punishment.

There is no point bleating about it now, Daniel Dubois is ready to step up to the plate and I am more than confident he has got what it takes to seize the belts.

As for Tyson, we will assess his options, but he will be back soon enough to extend his dominance over the heavyweight division.

I WAS HAPPY last week that we were able to confirm a deal with Top Rank to broadcast Michael Conlan’s world title challenge against Luis Alberto Lopez on May 27 in Belfast. It is a great fight and occasion for the BT Sport viewers and also an ideal opportunity to showcase our own Irish talent on the card.