Dominic Donegan suffered a second successive surprise career defeat in Belfast tonight.
The Cavan light middle was hoping to bounce back from his first reverse suffered in Luxemburg in March but ultimately had to palate the taste of defeat on the MHD Promotions Dinner show.
Opponent Damian Esquisabel was billed as a potential test but the 26-year-old was still expected to emerge victorious.
However, he underperformed for the second night on the bounce and while there was a degree of controversy surrounding the loss abroad there was no argument from ‘The Bombs’ Team this time around.
Granted some ringside felt it could have been scored in Donegan’s favour but the common consensus was it a tighter fight than it should have been – and a fight that could have gone either way. Ultimately it was scored 39-37 in favour of Espuisabel.
To compound matters even further the reverse comes at time rumour had Donegan lined up for a sizable TV fight.
It all started well for the popular fighter, he boxed behind a solid jab and tested the Spaniard’s chin with a well-timed left hook in the first round. It was a test he passed but a right hook later in the stanza did force him to stumble.
The Boxing Ireland fighter upped the tempo early in the second without landing anything significant before the away fighter sparked into life.
It was Esquibel’s turn to land a left hook and Donegan’s turn to show his chin was ok before responding by forcing his man back to the ropes. In fairness to Esquisabel he did attempt a late rally, which may have caught the scoring referee’s eye.
Donegan’s jab had disappeared by the third as he began to load up. It allowed Espuisbel to get into a rhythm and force the pace. Sensing a real shift the blue corner fighter started to go to work. He attacked body and head and at one stage landed a right hook Donegan felt.
Esquisabel sensed a shock was on the cards and was busy again in the last, letting his hands go as Donegan seemed to tire. A solid left hook landed by Donegan seemed to give the red corner fighter a second win as an entertaining round heated up further.
In the end, it was another round where both had success but a round that the scoring ref deemed was the Spaniards. The win sees Esuisabel improve to 4-6 while Donegan’s record now reads 5-2.
Celtic Warrior’s Venezuelan debutant also failed to secure victory on the card much to the surprise of his corner.
Jesus Alvarez versus Stefan Nicolae, a former Calum Bradley foe was scored as a 38-38 draw. Regardless of the result, which was contested by Pascal Collins and some ringside, Alvarez looks like he has the potential and certainly has the ability to entertain.