By Elliot Foster
Rocky Fielding added the Commonwealth super-middleweight title to his British strap with an explosive opening round victory over David Brophy.
The Lonsdale belt holder, 30, came out firing from the off and eventually a barrage of unanswered punches led to the referee rightfully calling a halt to the contest at the ECHO Arena.
Fielding had previously won the rainbow belt, knocking out Luke Blackledge inside a round at Manchester Arena four years –– and ‘Brophs’, from Caldercruix, Scotland, succumbed to the same fate.
Brophy, who went to Melbourne back in March and knocked out Zac Dunn to claim the crown in spectacular fashion, but Fielding immediately got on the front foot and quickly found a home for his powerful right hand in front of his home fans.
The Scot repeatedly had his head knocked back by Fielding’s thunderous shots and was clearly in some discomfort before a heavy right hook had him down on the floor.
However, Fielding was merciless following Brophy’s rise and, after a brief moment on the ropes himself, ‘Rocky From Stocky’ bounced into the centre of the ring to back Brophy up before a huge right hook left the former George Groves foe and outgoing champion unable to continue.
Referee Steve Gray rightfully put Brophy out of his misery after just two minutes and 18 seconds, eventually raising the hand of Fielding, who had his worst night as a pro at the same venue two years ago.
“I was really pleased with that,” Fielding said afterwards. “I am back in business now.
“I did have some demons to get rid of [following one-round defeat at the hands of Callum Smith], but I am happy with the performance and happy with how I got it.”
And promoter Eddie Hearn was delighted with Fielding’s display before offering a hint as to the potential next move for his man.
He said: “We’ve got a little card in London in December when Tony Bellew faces David Haye in a rematch at the O2 Arena and I think Rocky is a definite possibility to fight on that.
“I think he needs to step up to European level now. He deserves a lot of respect. He had a big defeat and got over that, having two great wins.
“We’ll push for the European title [held by former Callum Smith victim Hadillah Mohoumadi] for the Bellew-Haye II card.
“The win against Brophy was a good and very impressive one, but I feel like it’s time for him to move on a level and maybe even get a crack at [WBA ‘regular’ super-middleweight champion] Tyron Zeuge as well.”