James Tennyson stops Declan Geraghty to win Irish title after amazing see-saw battle

In one of the best Irish title fights of recent times, James Tennyson stopped Declan Geraghty in the sixth round of a pendular clash to reclaim the vacant Irish super featherweight title.

While in the lead up both stressed that it would not be a fight defined by puncher v boxer – that is exactly what it was, with Tennyson sending Geraghty down twice with huge shots in the second and sixth, and Geraghty impressively outboxing Tennyson in the other rounds.

Geraghty began the sharper, landing lightning quick shots through the guard of Tennyson and catching him off balance with a counter one-two. Tennyson landed the occasional clipping shot, but nothing of major note – although this would soon change.

The fight exploded into life in the second as Tennyson floored the Dubliner heavily  with the first big right he landed, a huge shot that nailed Geraghty to the floor. The southpaw rose quickly, winking at Tennyson and elected to trade rather than to box and move. Amazingly, Geraghty seemed to hurt Tennyson with a bodyshot as they both exchanged blows for the remainder of an amazing round.

The drama continued in the third round. Geraghty began boxing the better before Tennyson landed a massive head-turner of a shot. Using this as an invitation Geraghty began to trade, and wobbled the Poleglass puncher with a sharp flurry.

Geraghty put on a boxing exhibition in fourth stanza, playing matador to Tennyson’s bull and showing flashes of real class, with his straight left a constant threat.

The inner-city Dub continued to work well in the fifth as he sought to draw the sting out of Tennyson.

Geraghty’s boxing dominance continued as we entered into the second half of the bout before Tennyson’s right once again found the point of ‘Pretty Boy’s’ chin. The former amateur star went down again, much more badly hurt this time. Rising unsteadily he sought to hold as Tennyson continued to let the leather fly in the clinch before the Ulsterman forced him to the ropes and the bout was waved off with just seven seconds left in the stanza.

Geraghty was left understandably frustrated with the stoppage, claiming it was early.

After an amazing fight, Tennyson moves to 18(14)-2(2) and is now a two-time Irish super featherweight champion. Geraghty drops to 14(4)-2(1) with the loss.

Tennyson, who looks to be a beast at the more comfortable weight, had mentioned a Commonwealth title charge in the build up, however an Irish title rematch would certainly appeal.

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie