Lewis Ritson thrilled his home crowd at the Utilita Arena in Newcastle with a pulsating points win against Robbie Davies Jr.
In a career best display, Ritson moved a step closer to a possible World Title tilt in settling his rivalry with the Liverpudlian. The bout was an eliminator for the WBA Super Lightweight Title, held by Regis Prograis who defends his belt against IBF champion Josh Taylor at the O2 Arena on Saturday.
The contest began frenetically, with the pair trading punches from the very beginning. Several hooks from Ritson seemed to stun Davies, who regained composure to connect with power punches of his own.
— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) October 20, 2019
Davies Jr targeted the body of the home favourite in the second, but “The Sandman” roared back in the third, firing off hooks from close range. Davies’ nose was damaged in the fourth, but this didn’t stop his momentum as the two exchanged yet again.
The pace understandably slowed in rounds six and seven, with Ritson controlling the action with an impressive jab. Back came the Liverpudlian though, and in rounds eight and nine, Ritson seemed to tire, as he was driven back to the ropes.
The Championship rounds were tense, but the final round saw the two end as they began, trading heavy blows on the ropes as both emptied their tanks.
An enthralling fight went to the cards, where Ritson clinched a unanimous points win by scores of 116-112 (twice) and 117-111.
Forest-Hall born Ritson called for the winner of next week’s unification at St James’ Park, the home of his beloved Newcastle United.
Fitzgerald claims Lonsdale strap
Chief support on the card saw Scott Fitzgerald claim the British Super Welterweight Title with a bruising points win against Ted Cheeseman.
Cheeseman surprised most by adopting slick boxing skills that frustrated Fitzgerald, especially in the early rounds. Fitzgerald began to drag Cheeseman into his type of fight in the second half of the contest, and the Preston man overcame his slow start to hammer in hooks and force the champion to trade in round nine.
Fitzgerald cranked up the pressure in the Championship rounds, bloodying Cheeseman’s nose in the tenth, and launched frenzied body attacks in the closing stages.
Fitzgerald’s second half efforts saw him rewarded on the cards, where he earned a win by scores of 116-112 (twice) and 115-113.
The Preston man could be in line for a grudge rematch with arch rival Anthony Fowler who was sat ringside.
Martin Bakole impressed on the bill, inflicting a rare stoppage defeat for the usually durable Kevin “Kingpin” Johnson.
Johnson began in his usual defensive shell, but was forced out of this in the third, as he turned away from a Bakole assault, as began to eat plenty of right hands from the Congolese man in the fourth.
— Martin Bakole (@MartinBakole17) October 19, 2019
Johnson’s head was jolted back several times in round five, and that was enough to force the referee’s intervention.
Elsewhere, Lawrence Osueke and Ricky Summers scrappily fought out a draw in their British Light Heavyweight Title eliminator.
The action was sparse and difficult to score, and this was reflected on the cards at the end of ten forgettable rounds.
Oseuke took a 100-92 verdict on one card, but Summers was adjudged a 96-95 victor on another. The crucial vote was a 95-95 draw, meaning a rare three way split.
Savannah Marshall continued her quest for a world title shot with a ruthless third round stoppage of Ashleigh Curry.
The towel was thrown in by Curry’s corner after an unanswered barrage of punches from Marshall.
Popular local lad Joe Laws battled to a points victory over Justice Addy and continued his ongoing feud with Devin Haney by calling out the WBC lightweight champion afterwards.
April Hunter also registered a win on debut and made history in the process, becoming the first female Newcastle professional boxer.
Remaining undercard results:
Kieron Conway bt Konrad Stempkowski- PTS
John Docherty bt Lewis van Poetsch- PTS
Darren Reay vs Eduardo Valverde- D
Terry Wilkinson bt Daryl Pearce- PTS
Thomas Whittaker Hart bt Darryl Sharp