Stephen Ormond falls to Evans defeat in Belfast

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Stephen Ormond failed in his WBO European title challenge against Craig Evans tonight in what was a messy fight .

The chief support bout on the ‘Battle of Belfast’ card at the Waterfront Hall, live on BoxNation, Ormond was dropped twice in the final round and outpointed by the reigning champion.

They said it was going to be a war and it indeed looking to be shaping up that way in the early exchanges before the bout descended into something akin to a wrestling match.

The pair went at it from the first bell, trading bodyshots. Ormond seemed to start the brighter, but as the opener progressed the greater volume and variety was coming from the Welsh boxer.

A better second for Ormond saw him land with one particularly eye-catching left hook upstairs which was well-taken by Evans.

A break was called in the third as a shot veered low from ‘The Rock,’ who looked to be the physically stronger – although Evans was still landing plenty.

Evans was coming in for scorn from the crowd for excessive holding in a messy fourth and the wrestling continued into the fifth as the bout began to sizzle out.

The cleaner work was coming from Ormond in similarly scrappy sixth, although Evans was arguably the fresher looking fighter.

The pair would take a tumble to the canvas at the start of the seventh after another grapple before Evans looked to have hurt Ormond in the final minute – only for the Clondalkin fighter to land a big shot of his own soon after.

Evans was undeniably in the ascendancy, landing at much greater frequency to an increasingly lethargic Ormond, before the pair again both fell to the canvas at the end of the eighth.

Swelling on Ormond’s eye became exceedingly bad in the ninth, another Evans round, and another round in which the pair took another tumble to the ground.

The Dubliner looked exhausted by the tenth and final round, and was sent to the canvas twice in the final minute, with bodyshots being Ormond’s undoing.

Going to the cards, the knockdowns proved inconsequential, with tallies reading 97:91, 99:89, 96:93 in favour of Evans. While the correct man won, the cards were perhaps a tad harsh on Ormond.

The loss sees Ormond fall to 24(13)-4(1), while Evans improves to 17(3)-1(0)-2

34 years old, Ormond had seen the fight as make-or-break, and the Celtic Warriors fighter’s career at the top level looks now to be over.

Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)

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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