James Tennyson came through the fire tonight in Belfast to defeat Ryan Doyle in an war at the SSE Odyssey Arena.
Opening the televised portion of the Burnett-Haskins undercard, Belfast super featherweight Tennyson came through some hairy moments against the relentless Doyle to bludgeon his way to a sixth round stoppage in front of a brilliant atmosphere.
Building on a brilliant win over Declan Geraghty for the Irish title in March, ‘The Assassin’ added another notable name to his record in an exciting fight which played out live on Sky Sports.
Tennyson started the fight the stronger, and got through with some big rights as he forced Doyle backwards. The Manchester boxer looked to implement the jab, but the telling shots were coming from Tennyson.
The fight exploded in the second, with Doyle opening up with flurries and Tennyson responding with his trademark inside uppercuts. Doyle looked momentarily wobbled but would fight back and trade until the bell.
The high-paced action resumed in the third, with the two trading with abandon. Tennyson would be getting the better of the early portion before Doyle seemed to hurt the Belfast boxer in the closing seconds, with Tennyson covering up until the bell.
The ascendancy of Doyle continued well into the fourth. Tennyson would fight back with a big combination but Doyle would call him in and continue his buzzsaw-like attacks and finish the round strong.
The momentum would turn again in the fifth stanza, with Tennyson landing a lovely double uppercut and a skimming bodyshot that hurt Doyle. ‘The Assassin’ had wrestled his way on top, and landed another good straight shot in the closing seconds as the Olé, Olé, Olé’s began to ring around the Odyssey.
Tennyson looked close to a finish as the bout neared the halfway point. The Poleglass puncher hurt Doyle early and the boxer of Dublin descent did well to survive an onslaught in the corner. Tennyson would hurt his opponent repeatedly throughout the three minutes, leaving the face of Doyle badly bloodied.
‘Ruthless Ryan’ showed incredible coverage to see out the round, but his corner would pull him out, handing Tennyson the stoppage win.
After an all-out war, Tennyson improves his record to 19(15)-2(2), while the amazingly brave Doyle drops to 14(8)-2(2)-1
The win sees Tennyson claim the WBA International title, and it is expected that he will enter the world rankings topped by current champion Jezreel Corrales next month.
More pressingly however though, the 23 year old has put himself right in the mix for domestic titles, with Belfast’s Anto Cacace and Matin J Ward contesting the British and Commonwealth titles next month
LISTEN: Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill speak to Luke Keeler and Paddy Barnes on Episode 6 of The Irish Boxing Show: