Chisora decisions Johnson, Fury halts Abell
Dereck Chisora (19-4) and Tyson Fury (22-0) remained on course for a rematch after dominant wins on Saturday night at the Copper Box Arena, London.
Chisora, 30, won a unanimous points decision in a gritty 12-round contest against veteran American Kevin Johnson (29-4-1).
Johnson started the fight well and dominated the first round and a half off the jab but went to sleep slightly in the middle rounds, complaining to the referee too often and laying on the ropes. The highlight of the contest was a big right which put Johnson down in the fifth. Other than that, while the cleaner work often came from the American, Chisora was far busier throughout the fight and despite visibly tiring in the last three rounds, he ran out a deserved UD winner with scores of 118-109 (twice) and 118-110.
In the night’s main support fight, 25-year-old Fury produced a typically erratic display in an entertaining stoppage win over Joey Abell (29-8).
The 6ft 9” Mancunian looked overjoyed to be back in action, belting out Wonderwall by Oasis on his ringwalk. He had weighed in at a massive 19st 8lb and on peeling off his robe displayed the beer-and-chips physique he often carried in his early career. Nonetheless he managed to put in a thoroughly entertaining performance. At times he worked off the jab, at others he waded in, missed, got his feet in a mess, got tagged, clowned around, but never looked in serious danger of losing. He felled Abell with what looked like a deliberate low blow in the third, for which he was lucky not to be docked a point, and the American was given time to recover.
Fury then chopped Abell down twice legally in the same round, firstly with a hard right and then at the end of the session with a left hook. Between the two he was giving Abell plenty of verbals and goading him on. Abell responded well, wobbling Fury with a sharp left at the start of the fourth. It was the fifth or sixth time he had got through with that particular shot and on another day, against a higher level competitor, Fury may not have got away with it. On this occasion, being buzzed only spurred him on and he launched into Abell, knocked him down twice more and referee Jeff Hinds waved the fight off. At ringside afterwards he described himself as the best in the world and called Wladimir Klitschko a ‘pussy’. For a man supposedly near the top of the world rankings, the whole thing felt remarkably like watching a fight in a car park.
Also on the card
Enfield’s Frank ‘Wise Guy’ Buglioni (12-0) successfully defended his WBO European super middleweight bauble against Italian Gaetano Nespro (21-10-1). Buglioni (11st 13lb 12oz) was clearly superior physically and technically to the challenger and tore into him from the outset. A big right wobbled Nespro (11st 12lb) at the end of the first and the Wise Guy continued to apply the pressure and dropped the Italian at the start of the fourth. Nespro’s resistance was finally broken in the fifth, with two knockdowns. The first from a crisp left hook and the second from a flurry of blows that was enough for the referee to wave the action off with forty seconds left in the round. Buglioni’s opponent, essentially a light hitting middleweight, was clearly overmatched but there are definite signs of development in Buglioni. He seems to have added to his repertoire, showcasing not only power punching but also some decent defensive work and ring generalship. The time has surely come for him to step up in class and show how he can cope with an opponent who can give him something to worry about.
Bradley ‘Super’ Skeete (15-0 and 10st 6lb 8oz) was sadly denied the opportunity to pit his wits against veteran Guyanan Vivian Harris when the former WBA and WBC light welter champ failed his medical. Skeete boxed late replacement Christopher Sebire (22-8) instead and dominated the fight comfortably off the jab. At 6ft 1, Skeete is very long-limbed for a welterweight and his opponent couldn’t get anywhere near him. He hurt Sebire with a right hook in the first but after that, the fight settled into a soporific pattern of Skeete moving around and flicking out the jab while the Frenchman fought in all-too-rare bursts. Bradley opened up briefly at the end of the eleventh but other than that was happy to do just enough to win. He came away with a handsome unanimous decision, to capture a WBA Intercontinental title, but will not have won many new fans in the arena or from the television with a display that was dominant without providing much entertainment or any memorable moments.
Hughie Fury (12-0) was served up American plodder Matt Greer (16-12) as his next sacrificial lamb. Greer turned up out of shape and showed little appetite for the contest in the first as he was hurt by some stinging rights to the ribs. Fury (17st 9lb) boxed fluently and moved well. He found his opponent’s flabby midsection an easy target again in the second and put Greer (17st 5lb) down with a body assault a minute into the round. The American got up at nine only to succumb to further abdominal punishment and flop to the canvas again within thirty seconds. Once more he rose at nine, but young Hughie continued the assault and finished his man eventually with a right to the head. Referee Jeff Hinds counted the American out at 2.37 of the second session.
Liverpool’s Thomas Stalker (10st 1lb) comfortably outpointed Trowbridge journeyman Dan Carr (10st 2lb) over six threes. Carr stepped in with infrequent flurries but spent the vast majority of the fight circling away from Stalker who repeatedly lanced him with southpaw right jabs and crisply delivered left hand leads. Referee Bob Williams scored it 60-53 in Stalker’s favour.
Islington’s ‘Gorgeous’ Georgie Kean (3-0) showed his stuff again against Birmingham journeyman Dee Mitchell (9-52-1). Kean showed a nice variety of work and plenty of offensive spite but frequently left himself wide open to the counter, which a more competitively-minded opponent might have taken advantage of. Bob Williams gave Kean every round. 40-36. Both fighters weighed in at 11st.
In other action, Billy Morgan lost by a point to crafty gym mate Michael Grant in a light welter contest, Lewis Pettit dominated Slovakian journeyman Elemir Rafael at super bantam and cruiserweight Steve Collins Jr fought a 38-38 draw with Tommy Gifford.