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Are You Not Entertained

Mixed success for the Southpaw Jab team was but a drop in the boxing ocean of a great Goodwin supply of leather on skin action. It’s my article, I’ll use that metaphor.

One of three title fights- Deion Jumah‘s inevitable stoppage of Ossie Jervier was great fun if you weren’t Ossie Jervier. Swapping bombs in the fifth, superior fitness meant Jumah took home the Cruiserweight Southern Area title with a fifth round stoppage; onwards and upwards for the powerful Chelsea man. Dropped twice, Jervier was unhappy to see the towel thrown by his corner.

The biggest title fight of the evening was for the English Light Heavyweight strap, but unlike the others this felt like a last gasp rather than a show of something new. Miles Shinkwin and Joel McIntyre had met twice before, with honours split. Shinkwin shimmied and (for this writer) stuttered over the line. That’s not to say it wasn’t painful: McIntyre was cut early on, but the audience had to suffer as many rounds as he did. Shinkwin’s style is jittery, and while no doubt getting hit by him hurts, he needs to let his hands go more to prove as much.

While both boxers were willing the fight was, despite the gore, gun shy.

Do you want to know what not to watch, or what to watch? I’m writing, so it’s the latter. You’re welcome.

Jerome “Stay Ready” Campbell has already battered a succession of the top away men around. Only he’s done it from fight one; being matched like a man on a mission. Entertaining and aggressive in the ring, he’s chatty and humorous out of it- walking in wearing a Santa hat and promising me a show. Santa Ready: he delivered the goods. His opponent Jamie Speight is no fool, and he knew he was in a fight soon after the first bell of this four rounder. Speight loved every second, fighting fire with fire and taking a share of one round as Campbell moved to 4-0.

Another one you’ll not regret paying to see is Angelo Bevilacqua. The man from Milan is effervescent both in and out of the squared circle, appearing in a typically engaging battle with Rhys Saunders. Many prospects err on the side of caution, Angelo knows fans want fights. He took a deserved 39-37 decision home along with his beaming smile.

Gutted not to be facing Tey Lynn Jones for the Southern Area Middleweight belt, Linus Udofia settled with the similarly unbeaten Michal Gazdik. A transparently impressive three wins with two early finishes, all amassed in Eastern Europe, never gave Gazdik a chance. Frankly, Udofia took the piss out of him. Not a fight to take risks in, an eight round beat down was a happy watch. Every round to the Luton man means 2019 is still strap season.

If there was a three minute excitement award, “The Spartan” Chris Davies would have walked home with it on Saturday. The new addition to trainer Noel Callan’s team secured the first early win of his eleven fights after some squeaky bum time following a heavy knockdown in the first. Showing immense powers of recovery, Davies recuperated, rallied and returned the favour to Attila Tibor Nagy. Nagy wanted no more despite a minute respite beckoning him after a ten count at 3:08 gone, shaking his head as he crumbled.

Debuts are always testy, and Anelle Massey will regret not letting her hands go against the busier Vaida Masiokaite. Massey looked superior but only in shades; perhaps nerves knocked her confidence in her evident ability. It was scored a draw, fairly.

Mark Little is never in a dull fight. Despite dominance throughout, he dug deep in the final three minutes of six sessions against Dmitrij Kalinovskij, who suddenly fancied it. Referee Mark Bates’ 58-57 score made sure Little’s 0 went home with him.

Some other cracking examples of why we love the small hall were Denis Deniikjev and Yousseff Khoumari entertaining fully. Ellis Zorro, Daniel Mendes, Jonathan Palata and Robbie Chapman also got wins from the home corner.

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