Sam Eggington earned himself a WBC ranking at middleweight as he pounded his way to a unanimous points decision over Carlos Molina, Mexico’s former IBF super-welterweight champion, in Coventry.
Eggington seems to have been around forever, but is remarkably still only 27. Having won British, Commonwealth and European titles at welterweight, his career seemed to be going nowhere when he was stopped in a one-sided fight by Liam Smith two years ago. But having signed with Mick Hennessy, Eggington has breathed fresh life into his career.
The win earned him the WBC silver belt and most likely the No 9 ranking that Molina took into the fight.
“It’s a mad feeling, it’s something you wish you get offers for,” Eggington said. “This couldn’t have fallen at a better time with fans coming back. I felt like I needed a sledgehammer to move him. I tried to hit him with big shots, he went back a few times but never wobbled. He was teak tough.
“I can do light-middle, I can do middle, I’m just waiting for the phone to ring. Wherever the opportunities are, I’ll be there. I’m only getting better and I am enjoying my boxing.”
Eggington began well, tagging Molina with two rights early on, but Molina found his stride in the second and was catching Eggington with hooks around the side of his guard, as the Midlander made looked to walk him down.
But Eggington fired back in the third round, pounding home the right repeatedly and sending Molina scurrying back across the ring after landing one shot.
The round helped Eggington establish some authority on the fight and he controlled the next two rounds behind his jab. The sixth was better for Molina as he caught Eggington on the way in, but Eggington found the target better in the seventh and eighth rounds, as he picked his shots and drew Molina.
The Mexican was a difficult man to dissuade, though, as he was spurred into action any time Eggington wasn’t throwing. The final three rounds became a bit of a slog. Molina was on the floor in the eleventh round, but it was ruled a slip.
Molina didn’t stop swinging, catching Eggington with a big right in the final round, but Eggington managed to keep his range and use his jabs to pile up the points for a comfortable win, the three judges all going for Eggington by scores of 116-112, 119-109 and 117-111.
Stephen McKenna had a predictably early night as he stopped Damian Haus, of Poland, in the first round. McKenna tore into Haus from the opening bell, bashing away at him with both hands. Haus tried his back to cover up on the ropes. Two minutes in and stuck in a corner, a hard left hook to the body dropped Haus.
The Polish fighter was in no mood to quit and attempted to fire back, but McKenna trapped him in the corner again and dropped him with an overhand right, causing referee Kevin Parker’s intervention at 2:52 of the first round.
“I love making fights exciting and getting my name out there,” McKenna said.
Kaisee Benjamin continued his unbeaten run going when Martin Harkin failed to come out for the eighth round of a scheduled ten-rounder at welterweight.
Benjamin dropped the Scot with a brutal right to the body at the end of the seventh round and, while he made it back to the corner, her was retired.
Shakan Pitters returned to winning was after losing his British light-heavyweight title to Craig Richards in December as he stopped Jermaine Springer in the fifth round.
River Wilson Bent claimed the Midlands Area middleweight title as he stopped George Farrell in the seventh round, finishing matters with a ferocious two-fisted barrage when he had Farrell trapped in a corner.
Tommy Welch dropped Mateusz Rybarski three times in a little more than a minute as the heavyweight son of former WBO title challenger Scott Welch recorded his second straight stoppage win as a professional.
Idris Virgo continued his winning run with a points win over Lewis Van Poetsch at cruiserweight.
Michael Hennessy Jr won a six-round decision over Paul Cummings, while Brett McGinty won a four-round decision over Dwain Grant.
Ron Lewis is a senior writer for BoxingScene. He was Boxing Correspondent for The Times, where he worked from 2001-2019 - covering four Olympic Games and numerous world title fights across the globe. He has written about boxing for a wide variety of publications worldwide since the 1980s.