LIVE results

BBN's Anish Parekh keeps you updated LIVE from ringside:

DOORS OPEN - 5:30pm GMT

FIRST BELL - 5.55pm GMT

 

Preliminary bouts (Sky Sports Facebook)

 

Bout 1
BURIM AHMETI (Debut) vs. RYAN HIBBERT (0-5)

After being greeted with rapturous applause, Burim Ahmeti defeated Ryan Hibbert by unanimous decision.

Hibbert started confidently by circling the ring and landing straight right hands but Ahmeti slowly warmed into his rhythm.

His stiff jab and dedicated body attack wore Hibbert down and allowed Ahmeti to overpower his foe en-route to an impressive debut victory.

Trained by Mickey Burke, Ahmeti won 40-36 in a promising performance for his pro bow.

Ahmeti: "I've got quite a few mates and that was only 50% of what wanted to come. We've been working in the gym and it's my first one back in a while so we worked off the jab and had fun."

 

Bout 2
ELLIOT WHALE (1-0) vs. LEE HALLETT (1-28)

Southpaw Elliot Whale marked himself out as one to watch, as he defeated a brave Lee Hallett, by unanimous decision - 40-36.

Sidcup's Whale utilised his height advantage (6ft 1") by pumping out his impressive southpaw jab, before firing off fluid combinations.

Hallett was game and hadn’t come to lie down but Whale displayed elusive footwork to always remain a little out of reach. Hit and don't get hit was definitely the them being displayed here.

This was a mature performance by Whale, trained by Alan Smith and Eddie Lamm, who contained his excitement in front of a noisy army of fans to keep his concentration, stick to his game plan and ultimately deserved the one-sided win.

Whale: "I think it was better than my debut. I was a bit more relaxed this time around. My fanbase make some noise don't they?"

 

Bout 3
INDER BASSI SINGH (1-0) vs. ZIGIMANTAS BUTKEVICIUS (2-30)

Haringey Box Cup winner, Inder Singh Bassi outclassed Hull-based Lithuanian Zigimantas Butkevicius 40-36, to improve his record to 2-0.

Trained by Kevin Lilley, Bassi started the bout confidently, peppering Butkevicius with his piercing, swift jabs. He busted his opponent's lip early on and continued to dominate the action with his faster hands.

Bassi was patient and countered well, particularly at the beginning of the third round where a counter jab-uppercut landed with aplomb.

This was an assured performance from Bassi. The only slight criticism would be that he lacked the power required to earn the stoppage that he probably deserved. His arm punches were full of speed but lacking muscle and power.

Bassi: "I was pleased. I think I boxed well. We've been working on not loading up and boxing well. I picked him off and didn't get involved. Sometimes it's hard not to rush in!"

 

Bout 4
WILLIAM HAMILTON (Debut) vs. JOHN SHEARER (Debut)

Another iBox Gym prospect, William Hamilton destroyed John Shearer with a second round stoppage in a battle between two debutants.

A full-time pro, Hamilton affirmed his supremacy in the second segment by closing the distance, cutting off the ring and landing a jab to tee up the straight right, which left Shearer on the seat of his pants.

Hamilton piled on the pressure and attacked with ferocity, before closing the show with another well timed jab and straight right hand combo to again knock Shearer down.

He bravely rose, but the startled look on his face signaled to the referee that he had had enough. Full credit goes to Shearer who took the fight at a day's notice.

Hamilton: "I have a tendency to go crazy so I strayed on the other side of staying relaxed. When I hit him, I knew it was just a matter of time before I stopped him. I hope to move fast in this game."

 

Live on Sky Sports Action (UK) & ESPN+ (US), 7.30pm GMT

 

Bout 5
Golden Contract super-lightweight semi-final, 10 Rounds
OHARA DAVIES (20-2) vs. JEFF OFORI (10-1-1)

Hackney's Ohara Davies dismantled a brave Jeff Ofori to earn a spot in the Golden Contract super-lightweight final.

If Ofori was nervous about being the underdog in this fight, he didn’t show it as he strode out confidently and leapt over the ropes to entertain the packed house.

As the two stood in the ring together, it was striking just how much bigger Davies was and brought some clarity as to why he selected Ofori as his opponent, when he picked out the Golden Ball during the mid-week draw.

'Two Tanks' Davies immediately takes command of the centre of the ring and throws his jab repeatedly to gauge his distance.

Despite landing with crisp jabs, Tottenham's Ofori was undeterred and began walking Davies down. He slipped Davies' vaunted right hand well and had success with a great straight right hand to conclude the first round.

Ofori increased his workrate in the second stanza by getting in close to the often controversial 'OD' and aggressively fighting on the inside. The tactic worked well but the superior size and strength of Davies meant that when he did land, it momentarily stunned his smaller foe.

A tiring Ofori became a static target for Davies in the third round as he  finally found his range. Davies repeatedly landed his jab and found a home for his powerful right hand, which culminated in a knockdown with the final punch of the round.

The fourth round saw Ofori continue to battle on courageously, but he didn’t have the power or strength to withhold the relentless Davies, who marched forward and clubbed away with swinging hooks. His eagerness to dramatically end the contest affected his timing, as Ofori survived a torrid round.

Davies landed shots in the fifth act, which left many wondering how Ofori was still on his feet. The hunted Ofori then surprised the crowd some more, as he swung away with abandon and had enough success to rattle Davies and steal the round.

That would be Ofori's last stand as the aggressive Davies caught his opponent whilst his back was against the ropes with a booming overhang right hand. Ofori stayed on his feet but lost the ability to defend himself, as two more clubbing right hands forced the referee to mercifully stop the contest.

Davies was simply too big and strong as he marched into the final, following a ruthless display of power. All eyes on McKenna now...

Davies: "I was amazed by his chin. I hit him with shot after shot and I was surprised he was still on his feet. I believe he can go far in the sport of boxing. "I don't believe people can live with my power when I land that much. Now we've got the big final we all wanted."

 

Bout 6
Golden Contract super-lightweight semi-final, 10 Rounds
WBC International title
TYRONE McKENNA (20-1-1) vs. MOHAMED MIMOUNE (22-3)

McKenna wins 96-94, 96-94, 97-93 in an unforgettable fight, but with controversial scoring.

I can barely hear myself think as the noise increases and the tension heightens as the two combatants enter the ring.

The action begins frenetically. McKenna is boxing effectively on the backfoot. Demonstrating a nice jab and countering with flurries before wheeling away.

Mimoune has portions of success with his left hook as he attempted to catch up to McKenna, but the Irishman was too slick and won the round the greater quality.

The pair go toe to toe in the second, as this contest unravels into a war. They take turns to exchange punches, neither man giving the other an opportunity to enjoy their success. McKenna probably edged the round with flashier combinations that caught the eye.

The second round has appeared to sap some energy out of McKenna. He’s no longer able to evade Mimoune as he becomes more flat footed. Mimoune grows in confidence, trapping McKenna against the ropes and unloading with punishing hooks to the head and body but is still made to work hard as McKenna defiantly fired back.

Mimoune took his momentum into the fourth round where he pushed McKenna back into the corner and landed power punches that stunned McKenna. The gruelling nature of the contest has both dripping in sweat and breathing heavily as they continued to battle at a jaw-dropping pace.

 In the sixth McKenna starts by using his footwork as he effectively did in the earlier rounds. It has the desired effect as he jabs and moves, out-boxing Mimoune enough to take the round.

Mimoune traps McKenna against the ropes and lands numerous hooks to the head which open a nasty cut on McKennas eye. The Irishman somehow manages to survive and fought back to survive the round.

Mimoune shrugs and marches forward after catching left hooks with his gloves. The sting has gone from McKenna’s work. Mimoune catches McKenna with a hard, short right hook, before unleashing a tirade of punches on his tiring foe whilst his back was against the ropes.

The final round encapsulated what was a superb fight from start to finish as the two went hammerand tongs until the final bell. McKenna, possibly feeling that he was behind on the scorecards, threw the kitchen sink at the Frenchman but couldn’t find a way to dent his chin, as it went to the judges scorecards. Despite most people believing that Mimoune had done enough to earn the victory, it was McKenna who surprisingly got the nod. The Frenchman was incredulous as he stamped around the ring in disbelief.

McKenna will now face Davies in a mouth watering, grudge match in the final.

McKenna: "It was very tough. He's ranked ninth in the world with the WBC. He's a classy operator and a classy fighter. I believe I won the first four rounds. He won a few in the middle and then Pete Taylor told me I had to win those last two rounds. I went out, showed my heart and in the end I thought I won six rounds to four."

 

Bout 7
Golden Contract featherweight semi-final, 10 Rounds
RYAN WALSH (25-2-2) vs. TYRONE McCULLAGH (14-0)

Ryan Walsh made it into the final of the featherweight by out-pointing Tyrone McCullagh 96-92, and 97-91 twice.

It may not have had the blood and guts of the war it followed but Walsh and McKenna's styles meshed nicely to give fans an intriguing battle. This was the archetypal bull vs matador matchup.

Walsh stormed out of the blocks in an attempt to panic McCullagh. He literally chased and harassed as he smartly waited for his opponent to make a mistake to capitalise on. McCullagh remained calm under pressure, flicked a few jabs and kept he marauding Walsh at a distance.

McCullagh is disciplined in avoiding to get involved in a tear-up with Walsh. He feinted, slipped and circled away from Walsh, utilising every inch of the ring before taking advantage of the openings by landing with crisp jab-crosses.

The unpredictable movement of McCullagh caused  Walsh problems in the third round. He’s started to follow him aimlessly around the ring only to leave himself exposed to the straight left. The punches don’t appear to hurt Walsh but they are scoring and must have impressed the judges.

The contest dramatically swung Walsh's way in the sixth. After landing a decent left hand, McCullagh performed the cardinal sin of keeping his hands low, whilst stepping back in a straight line, only to be caught with a right hand bomb that exploded on his chin. Walsh landed several more blows as McCullagh fell to the floor. The Irishman rose and peddled away for the rest of the round. Walsh patiently stalked his prey and landed one more booming right hook but couldn’t finish the fight as the bell sounded to end the round.

McCullagh looked to have regained the feet beneath and the two fought on even terms in the seventh stanza, however Walsh's work was doing the greater damage. The Irishman struggled to deter him with his own attacks as he ploughed forward with spiteful intentions. Walsh landed with an exceptional right hand and, but for the ropes, which kept McCullagh up, would have scored a second knockdown. Walsh was using his greater experience to stay patient and pound away. The slick movement that made McCullagh so effective in the earlier rounds was gone and replaced with the drunken stagger.

McCullagh rose from another knockdown in the ninth, partly attributed to fatigue. Walsh waited for the referee to commence the action and pounced like a starved predator but didnt have the time to find any decisive blow.

McCullagh was resilient up to the very end and deserved to hear the bell, but Walsh’s strength, power and experience were the difference as he booked his place in the final.

Walsh: "Tyrone is trying to outscore you. He's trying to nick rounds but what I didn't expect was what he took. That is one tough, tough man. I have to credit my opponent. That's the most I've run around in a ring my whole life. I sustained a good pace and I'm so happy I listened to my team when it came to picking him. I've never fought anyone like him and he's given me so much."

 

Bout 8
Golden Contract featherweight semi-final, 10 Rounds
WBO European title

LEIGH WOOD (23-1) vs. JAZZA DICKENS (28-3)

Jazza Dickens edged Leigh Wood by majority decision, with scores of 95-95 96-94 95-94, in yet another tremendous scrap.

Leigh Wood looks to have taken inspiration from Jeff Ofori as he hurdles over the ropes with ease and enters the ring – for some reason, that never ceases to impress me.

After a tentative start, Dickens landed with a massive left hand and then smothered Wood, which made him crumple to the floor. The referee didntscore a knockdown but it mattered little as Dickens continued his assault, connecting with two more slashing left hands that stunned the Nottingham man and made his eyes roll to the back of his head.

Wood’s biggest problem was leaving his chin up, which served as a welcome invitation to A fine Dickens uppercut in the 2nd round. Wood managed to have regained his composure and had his moments but Dickens was the superior technician.

Dickens continued to have the better of the action in the 3rd. He attacked the body with a straight left and the grimace on Woods face was all that was needed for Dickens to maintain that tactic. He boxed smartly and used impressive lateral movement in evading Woods attempts to sway the momentum of the contest.

It wasnt evident how Dickens eye began to swell but Wood took full advantage of it in round 5. He targeted it relentlessly and caused for the swelling to inflate, enjoying his best round yet.

Dickens remained determined despite the impending closure of his left eye. In round 6 he went back to attacking the body and landed with looping left hands and right hooks that left Wood looking ragged and bewildered.

Round 7 was a barn stormer. Dickens looked to be stamping his authority on the bout as he wobbled Wood with clean punches but Wood rallied in the final seconds of the round, unloading a ferocious flurry followed by a superb left hand to conclude the round.

Exciting back and forth action followed in the 8th with both boxers exchanging punches like Christmas presents.

The treated us with more of the same but a savage left hook left Wood reeling. Dickens rushed in to finish the fight and unleashed another barrage of punches but smothered his work and was separated by the referee giving Wood enough time to survive and hear the bell to end the round.

The final round saw both men swing their arms to a frantic finish. Both connecting with punishing blows. Wood likely took the round as he threw caution to the wind with one last, furious assault. But it was too little too late as Dickens claimed the victory and a place in the final where he will meet Ryan Walsh.

Dickens: "I have a lot of respect for Leigh after that. You'll get no disrespect between Ryan and I ahead of the final either."

 

News of the finals will be announced in due course. The light-heavyweight #GoldenContract semi-finals take place at the same venue on March 20, with #MTKFightNight rolling into Newcastle next week.

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