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McCarthy back on track in Italy

Reece Bellotti falls short on undercard

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Tommy McCarthy left elated after edging out Fabio Turchi Credit: Matchroom Boxing
Tommy McCarthy left elated after edging out Fabio Turchi Credit: Matchroom Boxing

Irish Cruiserweight Tommy McCarthy dug deep to record a split decision victory over Fabio Turchi in Trento, Italy on Friday night.

McCarthy wiped out Turchi’s previously unbeaten record with scores of 116-112, 112-116, 115-113 to catapult him back into British cruiserweight contention and claim the WBC international cruiserweight title.

In a tentative early round Turchi appeared rattled with McCarthy landing a powerful right which stumbled the Italian, in an otherwise cagey opener.

Tommy McCarthy is back in contention at domestic level Credit: Matchroom Boxing
Tommy McCarthy is back in contention at domestic level Credit: Matchroom Boxing

However, ‘Stone Crusher’ survived the early scare to largely dominate the early proceedings, forcing McCarthy onto his back foot.

Turchi, who boasts a victory over Tony Conquest was continuing to land to head and body, although his foe kept him in check with stinging counter punches in rounds three and four.

McCarthy, who was beaten by Richard Riakporhe in four brutal rounds in March began to find a rhythm responding to Turchi’s heavy combinations with a big right hand of his own in round six.

Both men continued to meet fire with fire and a clash of heads in round seven left Turchi with a huge cut above his left eye.

Nevertheless, the 26-year-old continued to stalk his opponent, landing with a jolting uppercut in round nine which was shrugged off by McCarthy, who was growing in confidence as the fight progressed.

The home favourite admirably soldiered on despite his left eye completing closing in round 10, following instruction from the ringside doctor that he could continue.

The final two rounds followed suit of the previous rounds, with both men letting their hands go with vigour as the fight went the distance.

Reece Bellotti fell short against Francesco Grandelli Credit: Matchroom Boxing
Reece Bellotti fell short against Francesco Grandelli Credit: Matchroom Boxing

Turchi appeared bruised and battered as he awaited the judges’ scorecards, but McCarthy without really a mark on him claimed the biggest scalp of his career on a split decision.

The Irishman made it two successive wins in Italy following his victory over Francesco Cataldo in July, incidentally a late replacement for Turchi who pulled out on fight week through injury.

McCarthy is firmly back in the mix at an exciting domestic level and is expected to face a British rival perhaps before the year is out.

On the undercard, it proved a tough night for Reece Bellotti who lost a split decision to Francesco Grandelli for the vacant WBC international super featherweight title.

The former British title challenger was leading on the judges’ scorecards after nine entertaining rounds, but Grandelli was far quicker on his feet landing contiously.

Realising he heading to a points loss, the Italian stepped up his punch volume piling on the pressure in the final two rounds to take the bout on scores of 96-95, 95-96, 96-94.

Dalton Smith made it three straight professional wins Credit: Matchroom Boxing
Dalton Smith made it three straight professional wins Credit: Matchroom Boxing

Elsewhere on the bill, Matteo Signani claimed the vacant EBU European middleweight title at the third time of asking, beating Gevorg Khatchikian on a split decision.

Whilst, Mirko Natalizi produced a showreel knockout to blast out Alexander Benidze in the final round of their six round super welterweight contest.

British super lightweight prospect Dalton Smith secured a third straight win, claiming a points win over Marko Radenovic.

The 22-year-old will now compete on the undercard of Katie Taylor’s WBO super lightweight bout with Christina Linardatou on November 2.

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