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27th July 2020
By: Max Taylor
Fight 1- Lynn VS Ogilvie:
This fight card began with a bang as the eager featherweight Louie Lynn came out all guns blazing and finished Monty Ogilvie via TKO in the second round.
Lynn wanted to deliver something special knowing the cameras were on him so stayed on the front foot and never stepped back. Forcing his opponent to the ropes, the former ABA Elite Featherweight Champion scored a knockdown half-way through round one with a sharp right hook over the top of Ogilvie’s jab followed by a piercing left uppercut that sank the Scotsman. Controversy ensued as 24-year-old Lynn landed two shots on the side of Ogilvie’s head when he was knelt on the canvas, forcing referee Robert Williams to have nothing more than a stern word with the Banstead-born boxer.
The only change viewers saw in round two was the polarised quality between the pair before the show was closed by ‘Loco’ Lynn. Despite Ogilvie having a degree at Edinburgh University, he couldn’t come up with the answers in this test as his opponent grew more confident, successfully switch-hitting. He looked for the odd shot, bobbing and weaving into distance and would occasionally land a lead hook against the boxer highly regarded by GB coach Rob McCracken, but the Celtic title challenger would get outnumbered with more significant shots by his opponent when they went toe to toe.
It was moments before the final minute of round two when Ogilvie was knocked off balance with another thunderous right hand countering his left jab. He was floored into the blue corner, where Lynn’s coaches watched on in delight. After another late strike, the prospect proceeded to the neutral corner while the referee counted down on Ogilvie who was extremely unsteady upon climbing to his feet thus had the fight waved off.
Fight 2- Henry Turner VS Chris Adaway:
Henry Turner crossed another steppingstone in his promising career as he whitewashed Chris Adaway after a dominant four-round contest which highlighted his potential as a super lightweight.
This was only the 19-year-olds third fight in the paid ranks, but he cruised to a comfortable decision win against Plymouth’s Adaway. Turner used his superior height and southpaw stance to his advantage, peppering his opponent with constant jabs to create range before landing consistently with a lead hook and shots to the body. The jab was an important component on the night as it prevented the seasoned 26-year-old from coming into close quarters and engaging in dirty boxing, something Adaway managed to do in the second.
The teenager, who hails out of the historic Repton gym, refused to stand straight and instead would bend his knees when squaring off against his opponent. This gave him the accessibility and appropriate angles to attack the body of his experienced rival.
Throughout the rounds, the seven-time national amateur champion kept jabbing Adaway, tempting him to overcommit and fall into a counterattacking trap. This was perfected by Turner in the third round when the opposing veteran lunged in with a lead hand but was off target as Turner pivoted to the side and landed a sweet right hook counter, scoring himself a knockdown.
It was uncharacteristic of the composed and defensively sound prospect to get caught, but when he did, Adaway would let him know about it with a brief celebration by holding his hand up. Admiring your work is something discouraged in boxing, but the Southerner saw it suitable. It was a testament to Turner’s discipline that he didn’t retaliate to this egging on and stuck to his game plan.
The final round was all Turner again despite his opponent putting his foot on the pedal and applying more pressure in the closing minutes, his range kept the feisty boxer away. As the final bell sounded, The Londoners hand was raised to reward a clever effort of neat counterpunching.
Fight 3- Denzel Bentley VS Mick Hall
It appeared that this would be the one but, after retirement from Mick Hall’s corner, Denzel Bentley got the job done inside six rounds for the 13th time in his career.
The middleweight came out strong, looking to continue the hype train that fans have boarded after 10 impressive KO/TKO victories since his debut, but Mick Hall proved he was no walkover as he connected with a perfectly timed straight right along with some sharp jabs and lead hooks in the opening round.
The Battersea-boxer found his rhythm in the second round though and caught ‘The Hammer’ with a clean right cross sequenced with wild but effective lead hooks in the early stages. Bentley’s power and intent to follow through his punches were evident as he almost threw himself off balance when missing the target.
The final minute of the third round almost jeopardized Hall’s chances of fighting on as Bentley pressured him onto the ropes and landed successive left crosses from the southpaw stance forcing the 34-year-old to cover up until his fierce opponent stepped away to take a breather.
Bentley continued to club his man in the fourth, exerting a lot of energy through repeated left hands and digs to the body that found their way through. When the bell concluded the second third of the bout, Hall went to the corner with a bruised face as a result of leaving his hands low and face unprotected after throwing.
The tide almost seemed to have turned when the fighters got back out of their corners though, Bentley opted to clinch rather than fire his wild hooks from the hip giving the sense that he had punched himself out. The former WBA international title challenger somewhat capitalised on his opponents’ fatigue, headhunting with his lead hand and going to the body. One-shot landed lower than the body though resulting in Hall getting a strict telling off from referee Steve Gray.
A second wind from Bentley in the sixth round compromised the momentum switch that seemed to be veering Hall’s way after a strong previous round. The 25-year-old had to dig deep entering the second half of the fight that was scheduled for 10. Bentley looked to rectify the poor fifth round he had and did so by dishing out extreme punishment to Hall yet again, swelling up his right eye. The young knockout artist sent his opponent the full length of the ring with a straight left and followed up with a flurry of punches putting Hall on the ropes. The pressure was maintained for a good thirty seconds before the pair disengaged and had a couple additional exchanges before the bell sounded for the seventh round.
Despite his lack of conserving energy and low tank only halfway through the fight, Bentley managed to fight through and pull off another stoppage over a durable foe.
Fight 4- Ramez Mahmood VS Chris Bourke
Chris Bourke claimed the Southern-Area super bantamweight title in the penultimate fight on the bill. The judges gave him a 96-94 points decision over a determined Ramez Mahmood but performed more convincingly than the scorecard suggests.
Bourke, like Bentley, was another boxer who hadn’t gone past six rounds in his career yet, so he entered unchartered territory going the entire 10 with Mahmoud.
It was never likely that the ‘Mathemagician’ was going to earn a stoppage victory as only two of his 11 wins has been done inside the distance, one of these decisions awarded him with the Southern-Area featherweight title. Bourke, however, is a much more well-versed finisher but didn’t have what it took to put away his then-undefeated opponent.
Mahmoud started well and paced himself, pitching his jab to Bourke consistently. The 25-year-old employed good head movement to avoid these though and struck back with straight shots to the head before opening up with whipping left hands to the body.
This tactic was what Bourke stuck with for majority of the fight, raising Mahmoud’s guard with headshots that consequently left the body unprotected.
The southpaw measured his distance well thus landed the more quality shots during the toe to toe exchanges. He mixed his work up well behind his jab, with left and right hooks upstairs and downstairs.
No matter how many times Mahmoud got caught with a combination of body shots, he showed no signs of letting up as he stuck that jab to Bourke for the entirety of the fight and occasionally came inside to his own punches to the body. There was no real variety after his initial jab though, appearing to the judges that he was the lazier fighter of the two.
The title fight failed to find another gear in the later stages due to Bourke’s priorities on conserving his energy as he battled through four rounds he hadn’t ever competed in before, unlike his adversary. Despite this, he maintained the pace he picked up early on in the fight, outpointing Mahmoud and dealing with the pressure that the London native threw on him in the final stages of the fight.
The tenth-round bell drew proceedings to a close and Bourke got the nod against a relentless rival.
Main Event: Joyce VS Wallisch
Joe Joyce came back with a bang after spending more than a year outside of the ring. He finished Michael Wallisch in the third-round after knocking him down in the second, winning his tune-up fight in style which served as a blowing of the cobwebs before he steps in the ring against ‘Dynamite’ Daniel DuBois in October.
The German came out confidently in the first round and mislead fans into thinking he wouldn’t be a walkover for the Olympic silver medallist. Wallisch landed some threatening straight right-hands over the top of Joyce’s guard in the opening three minutes but the ‘Juggernaut’ made a strong finish to the round, foreshadowing what was to come more in the next couple of rounds.
Wallisch started with offense again in the second, but this time it proved insignificant as Joyce was able to avoid the punches and come back with sustained pressure, throwing bombs to the head and body. It was a hook thrown by the Brit that eventually dropped his opponent who was tucked up on the ropes embracing damage that soon sent him to the canvas. Wallisch, whose previous fight was a TKO loss to Tony Yoka who beat Joyce in the Olympics to secure a gold medal, managed to survive the onslaught after he got back to his feet and defended himself sufficiently enough to make it to the third round.
The chance was looming for the former Commonwealth heavyweight champion to finish the job going into the next round, no way was this hard-hitting encounter going the distance. It was evident in Joyce’s punches that he weighed in the heaviest of his career as his power was on show for everybody watching from home. The favourite this time countered his German foe at the start of round 3 and mixed up body and headwork combining lead hooks with powerful rear hands to the body, from both stances.
This dropped Wallisch for the second time in the bout and, although he has more than double the amount of rounds that Joe Joyce does in the pro game, he didn’t have the experience to ride the tsunami the Olympian hurled at him when he beat the count. After relentless follow up strikes, it was a devastating two-punch sequence that secured Joyce the win as he went to the head with a clean right hook and finished with a wincing left to the midriff that saw him update his record now with 10 KO/TKO’S in 11 wins.
It is now up to Daniel Dubois to emerge victorious in his warm-up fight in order to stay on the path to an all British Heavyweight showdown between himself and the winner of the main event tonight. ‘Dynamite’ now knows he will have to be at his best if he wants to retain his domestic titles in October after seeing how dominant and capable his future opponent is even after spending 54 weeks out of action.
‘Max’d Out’ section:
Where I look at the fighters who Max’d Out. Performing their best and piquing my interest…
Best performance: Louie Lynn
Still with under 10 fights and only one victory coming by decision, the undefeated prospect looks a real force to be reckoned with in the Featherweight division. Although he showed his inexperience hitting his opponent on the floor, Lynn used great pressure alongside precise shot selection to get the job done against a competitive adversary. The future looks bright.
Fight of the night: Joyce VS Wallisch
This award was between this fight and the Bentley VS Hall bout. With this fight at heavyweight though, it seemed less of a mismatch than the latter as Wallisch weighed in at a career-high cementing the possibility that an upset could happen with any given punch. Joyce managed to contain him though rattling off powerful combinations and with it, his rust. A great fight to cap off an entertaining card.