Michael Conlan fights for the first time since he suffered world title heartbreak at the gloves of Luis Alberto Lopez in Belfast tonight.
The Olympic medal winner trades leather with former European Champion Jordan Gill on top of an eagerly anticipated Belfast fight night.
Also appearing on the Matchroom card are Belfast derbies between Tyrone McKenna and Lewis Crocker as well as Gerard Hughes and Ruadhan Farrell.
Caoimhin Agyarko competes in 50-50 action for the first time in his career when he shares the ring with Troy Williamson, while Sean McComb competes against friend Sam Maxwell.
Boxing is scheduled to begin at 5pm and we will be providing fight-by-fight updates as well as full-colour reports from of the main card.
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Thats a wrap for the undercard. Michael Conlan is next!
TYRONE MCKENNA v LEWIS CROCKER
100-90, 100-90, 98-92 Lewis Crocker registered a career changing win.
To his credit McKenna fought to the death letting his hands go. Crocker responded in kind and still looked for the finishing shot but what looks like it could be world-class power meet a world-class chin.
For round 9 read round 8. It’s more of the same.McKenna isn’t giving up but Crocker is not giving up a round.
McKenna took his shield from the corner and came out firing in the eight. It was another were you couldn’t but admire the work and talent of Crocker and the guts, heart and smarts of McKenna.
McKenna came out looking to go to war in the seventh but had to ship to spiteful and accurate body punches. Still, he stood and looked to fight – but the fact that only allowed him to show how good a chin he has was proof Crocker was on top. The Billy Nelson fighter still strong, still accurate and showing some of the qualities that have people hyping him as future world champion.
Crocker showed his skillset in the sixth, picking shots around the guard and countering well. McKenna showing he is one of the toughest Irish fighters of all time but not doing enough to win the round.
A closer round! Crocker still looks dangerous but McKenna seem to sense a momentum change. The Pete Taylor trained side of the fight a little busier and seemingly accustomed to the power punchers power.
There is something Golovkin about Crocker’s approach everything is hurtful. However, McKenna had his best round got his jab off and found a range where he could be a little more evasive.
Still McKenna putting entertainment over what may be the best tactic for him to win the fight. Holding his feet he is allowed ‘The Croc’ to land hurtful accurate shots. There are shots coming back but Crocker is on top.
McKenna is looking to let his hands go more here, always up for a fight. Crocker is calm methodical and looks every bit as dangerous they say. Although McKenna did send Crocker stumbling, off balance, or with a power shot of his own? Both smiling at the end of another fan-friendly round.
No feeling out process here! Crocker loading up from the off, looking strong and powerful. An exciting round, McKenna already having to show his toughness.
Here we go!!!
The one you have been waiting for is next!
10 x 3 mins WBA Continental Super-Welterweight Title
CAOIMHIN AGYARKO v TROY WILLIAMSON
A career best win for Agyarko – 94-96, 98-92, 97-92! The split decision gave the crowd a fight.
Two left hooks landed simultaneously in the last and got the crowd to their feet in the last. It also reminded the home fighter his opponent was still dangerous, so he took his toes. Although he flirted with the finish in the last 30 seconds after a beautiful right-hand left hook saw Williamson take a backward step for the first time in the fight. The Irish fighter ended the fight smiling, banging his chest and taking the crowd’s praise.
In control off the back foot in the penultimate round, flashy even, as he began to school a still-game but frustrated Williamson.
To his credit Williamson was disheartened and the former British Champion tried to make things uncomfortable for the Matchroom fighter.
Still Agyarko had answers in a closer round, landing lovely uppercuts off the ropes.
The Matchroom fighter shipped a left hook early in the session but took it well and really started to stand out as the round progressed.
Enjoying himself by this stage he opened a cut over his English opponent’s left eye.
‘Black Thunder’ has found his grove over this three-minute session. Fluid, evasive, and solid. Williamson kept coming and kept asking questions but the former Holy Trinity amateur more often than not had the answers.
A gear change saw the home fighter take centre ring for a large part of this session. He found a range he was comfortable at, showed great head movement and began to land the right hand.
It was short, sharp and sweet as Agyarko landed the better shots in the fourth, although Williamson was consistent in his pressure and landed a high left hook right on the bell.
Williamson looked to move through the gears in the third but Agyarko seemed to welcome the approach, trying to walk his foe onto big shots.
Both had success, Agyarko with one short right hook in particular, as the fight really began to warm up.
Both fighters tried to establish their jabs in the second and it was even on the lead-hand front, but Agyarko looked stronger and sprinkled the stanza with fast combinations. ‘Trojan’s’ corner got excited by a right hand landed right at the death, they felt the Irish fighter was hurt.
There is tension and excitement in the air. Belfast loves a good fight! It’s tense and tentative in the ring too, Agyarko bringing his jab into play first, looking quicker and more explosive. A solid one-two at as the round came to a close also stung the Darlington native.
8:44PM – Great reception for the Belfast man.
8:40 PM Agyarko ring walk time!
8:29 PM Another big Irish vs English fight is next
BANG BANG GRAVY CHIPS – Sean McComb – 100-87, 99-88, 99-88 points win for Sean McComb.
10 x 3 mins WBO European Super-Lightweight Title
SEAN MCCOMB v SAM MAXWELL
With Maxwell’s dramatic and late stoppage history, a dominant McComb just stayed out of range of the desperate Maxwell to cruise over the finish line.
A third knockdown scored for McComb. This time he puts Maxwell on the seat of his pants with a beautiful back hand straight down the pipe.
McComb punches the air as he eases to another round win. Maxwell looks void of ideas, the fight has been frustrated out of him.
Maxwell attempted to change the tide seventh but looked frustrated and tired by the end of the session. Indeed, he was being stung and hurt by more accurate Belfast work by the end of the innings.
Thre was less by way of output by McComb as he took the sixth off but there was still enough to keep a confused and tentative Maxwell in his shell.
Another knockdown with roots in skill not power saw McComb open up a huge lead by halfway stage. The Belfast man looks comfortable.
Maxwell cut a frustrated figure getting picked off as the fight progressed. He did let his hands go with a minute left but as if to ensure he didn’t gain any momentum boost, the Pete Taylor trained fighter fought fire with fire and ended up beating his opponent at his own game.
By the third McComb was purring, happy to score from distance, again varying his jab and landing impressive combinations when forced to fight. Some beautifully picked left hands rocked Maxwell’s head before a jab turned saw him score a questionable knockdown.
A sharp one-two and two backhand stabs to the body saw the Belfast side of the fight start the second well. McComb had found his rhythm early and looked sharper but Maxwell looked happy to apply pressure hoping it would reap reward further down the line. Another McComb round.
McComb appeared to win the early battle of the lead hands, varying his southpaw jab, often turning it into a hook.
‘The Public Nuisance’ also fired to the body well and let his hands go any time Maxwell tried to press him to the ropes.
7:31 PM Sean McComb and Sam Maxwell is next. The second of five brilliant 50-50s on the card
CAMERON VUONG v MICHAL DUFEK
TKO round 4 Cameron Vuong
6:43 PM – Bit of a break now before the next fight.
LELI BUTTIGIEG v MARIO OLIVEIRA
Leli Buttigieg wins first round knockout.
GERARD HUGHES v RUADHAN FARRELL
6:33 PM – 57-57 it’s a draw. Most in attendance had Farrell pipping a tight fight but the referee scored it a draw. The good news is we should see it again. The All Irish fight always delivers. Let’s hope the second all-Belfast fight is as entertaining.
Hughes continued to make ‘Rudy’ work in the sixth and his determination was playing a big part in another great all-Irish fight. And while Farrell was producing a breakout performance, showing ability not many believed he had, Hughes produced a strong finish landing a big uppercut and a solid hook at different times in the final 30 seconds, ensuring an entertaining end to a brilliant fight.
Farrell, a fighter who saw FIVE debut attempts fall through before finally joining the pro ranks, was on top by round 5. His output and accuracy were superior and he began to dominate. The fact a chin and bravery were Hughes’s main assets on display tells a story.
Hughes’ response was impressive again, getting inside with a jab to the chest – but when a blood started to decorate Hughes’s face Farrell’s confidence soared. He let combinations go inside, landing one eye-catching upper cut inparticular. He also found a regular home for what looked hurtful right hands to open up a lead. Although Hughes is still there, still coming forward and still looking to fight.
The entertainment continued into the third. It was a round where Farrell brought his jab back into play and made it more difficult for his opponent to get inside and work. He also managed to get the better of the close-quarters encouthers, potentially sneaking back ahead.
The Padraig McCrory managed Hughes quickly went about trying to level it up in the second. The Ballycastle resident switch-hitting, employing a good jab and finding his range. Farrell did have some success landing hooks in close and again finishing with a good right hand. However, it was a session fought at a range that suited Hughes.
The clash of styles was evident from the off with Farrell looking to use his reach advantage and Hughes looking to close the distance.
Farrell was able to score with the jab and landed some crisp right hands early in the round but Hughes had success when he looked to work the body. A big chopping right landed in the final few seconds more than likely won Farrell the stanza. It also sparked the Dee Walsh trained fighter into life and they finished the round firing.
6:02PM: It’s time for the first Belfast derby. Ruadhan Farrell and Gerard Hughes are in the ring and ready to fight.
FEARGHUS QUINN v ANGEL EMILOV
6:01PM – That win sees Quinn improve to 9-0.
6:00 PM – ‘The Mighty Quinn’ was handed every round by referee Eammon Magil and took a wide 60-54 points win after an entertaining fight.
Realizing he wasn’t going to take the Bulgarian out, Quinn was happy to box and move in the last. He picked some lovely one-twos and by this stage not loading up he put together some nice combinations to finish on a high.
It was more skillful from the BUI middleweight Celtic title winner in the penultimate stanza showing his ability to create angles and pick shots. Emilov did keep him honest but it was another Quinn stanza.
A good fight broke out in the fourth. The away fighter seemed buoyed by some blood trickling from the right eye of the Ulster man. and had a real go. He proved he had some guile to go with the grit he always shows and enjoyed his best round. However, it was still a round Quinn most likely won, showing his own backfoot capabilities before finishing the round back on the front foot.
Quinn looked to add some variation to his thudding methodical approach against the fighter who took Emmet Brennan the six-round distance. The Bulgarian started to wilt under some good bodywork and at one stage looked like he may considering taking a knee, but he was still standing by the end of the stanza.
Emilov attempted to hold centre ring early in the second but was quickly retreating under the front foot pressure of the former Ulster amateur champion. The Bulgarian was proving tough and again landed a few of his own across the three minutes.
As expected, Quinn started strong and aggressively, marching forward behind a solid southpaw landing hurtful if not concussive shots. His Bulgarian opponent did land some good shots but the Belleek man was happy to take the to get close.