By John Hargate
Liam Walsh was generous in victory after an arduous win over Paul Appleby at the York Hall last Friday night. Walsh secured a tenth-round corner retirement win, he heaped praise on his rival when speaking about the fight with BoxingScene.com.
“Paul done brilliant. He closed the gap; he kept his stance tight, he let me lead off and countered me quick. He was well prepared. Really good. Billy Nelson, him [Appleby], Ricky [Burns] and all them, they’ve got a great team up there and are a good bunch of lads, probably the best bunch of lads in boxing. Massive respect for him, he done a real good job but I came through victorious. I showed what I’m about,” Walsh’s analysis of the first defence of his Commonwealth super-featherweight title.
Pre-fight. Francis Warren promised that a loss wouldn’t be the end of the world for either man. “We look after our guys and if they do suffer a defeat then we always do our best to make sure they can come back and can still progress in their careers.”
Some had called this a make or break fight for Appleby and suggested that he could be finished as a fighter if he lost. Paul proved he still has the drive and skill to succeed and there will be many hoping to see him back in the ring as soon as possible. The brave Scot moves to 17-3 (11).
Liam, 12-0 (9), acknowledged that a rest was important when asked what his future plans were after such a memorable win and grueling fight. “A rest, and time with my little boy Lenny, my missus, my brothers and my family. Just chill out for a little bit.”
As for his next opponent a bruised Walsh was as honest out of the ring as in it. “I’m not afraid of anyone. I’ll fight anyone, I’ve never rejected anyone. That’s who I am, that’s what I’m about. I shouldn’t gut it out and warrior it out like I do because I’m a clever boxer, but it’s good for the fans.”
Liam was clear when asked who he wants to fight next. “I was well impressed with Gary [Buckland] against [Gary] Sykes. Gary beat me as an amateur. I fought seven times for England, won six and the only time I lost was against Buckland. Rematch!”