Ulster Hall Undercard Results + Report

Sean McComb [6(3)-0] was undercard top dog in Belfast on Friday night.

Outside of Luke Keeler who won an entertaining passion filled main event, the rangy southpaw was the star of the show.

‘The Public Nuisance’ took a step up considering he was just five fights and just over six months into his pro career and former British title challenger Troy James at the Ulster Hall and looked a class apart.

To say he looked a well-schooled veteran would actually be an insult due to the fact he looked so fresh and vibrant, but the pro novice already looks like he has outgrown journeymen.

The hype surrounding a fighter who has come out of the blocks at top speed might be flamed by the element of surprise. McComb was a respected amateur, winning European Games bronze, but he was never seen in the same light as the likes of fellow Belfast Boy’s club members Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlan.

Then there was suggestion, even from people close to the fighter, that he hadn’t the style to register an impact without the vest, but he has looked as good vestless as a Calvin Klein model and his pro start could be deemed more impressive than any of his former amateur peers.

In his shut out 60-54 win over former Midlands Area champion and Cyclone Promotions fighter James, the Belfast fighter showed a brilliant array of shots, ring intelligence, good footwork and most impressively a massive degree of confidence. The right handed southpaw showed the kind of skills and stage presence that suggests he could fulfil his bill-topping prediction sooner than expected.

Some may ask why if he was so dominant he did he not take out James, but he seemed quite aware that the short, compact and defensively sound experienced operator wasn’t for folding so enjoyed himself over six instead.

Steven Ward [10(3)-0] may not call his eight rounds all that enjoyable, but he did dominate against Josip Perkovic.

‘The Quiet Man’ flirted with just doing six as he came close to reaping the reward for some well timed body work with just over two stanzas remaining, but instead of look for one killer punch when the Croat was hurt and tiring he unsuccessfully tried to fool the referee into stepping by going shoe shining.

It would have been the fourth stoppage of the Jamie Moore-trained fighter’s career, but once it didn’t come in that round the pair seemed to accept the bout was going the distance and the way of the home corner.

The likable and well-supported 28-year-old again looked impressive in patches, introduced some solid body work to his game, was composed when his game enough foe jumped him at the start of rounds and looks like the kind of fighter that would benefit from a step up.

Knockouts are not a problem for Irish-Boxing.com Knockout of the Year 2018 winner Padraig McCrory [7(3)-0], but he may have pushed too hard for one against former Conor Coyle, Thomas Finnegan, and Anto Upton foe Santos Medrano further down the card.

The Belfast super middleweight hurt the Spanish based fighterw ith a body shot in the opening seconds taking the wind and the adventure out of his sails in the process. As a result he faced a quite negative and awkward foe and looked frustrated on occasion.

The Ray Ginley-trained super middle took the by now infamous hammer out of the toolbox on a number of occasions, but couldn’t hit the nail flush enough to drive it into the canvas in one go.

In fairness to McCrory, he did dominate and landed a lot cleaner anytime any time his undersized opponent opened up and there is no doubt he will benefit from the six rounds as well as the experience of going past four for the first time.

McCrory won on a referee’s scorecard of 60-54 as did Tyrone McKenna [18(6)-1(0)-1], who moved back down to journeyman level after a year of big fights.

‘The Mighty Celt’ had promised a knockout but looked under clear orders to box and went the distance with the durable Nicarguan Oscar Amador.

It looked apparent that the opponent was hand picked to question the discipline and ability to avoid going to war, but for the most part the Belfast southpaw resisted.

Amador did land clean two or three times and Danny Vaughan will look for the southpaw to use his skills and physical attributes more, but the fight did exactly what it said on the tin – McKenna got a break from tough fights and six good rounds in what could prove to be a warm up for Ohara Davies.

Another one to warm up for a possible big fight on what was a routine enough undercard was Celtic title hopeful Gary Cully [8(4)-0].

The Kildare man, who looks like André the Giant in comparison to most lightweights, banked his first six completed rounds in just his seventh pro fight.

The 23-year-old found it easy against Brayan Mairena  in a 60-52 win and showed flashes of real class throughout the fight.

Indeed, he managed to force the fighter who has brought the likes of Fergal McCrory, Kid Galahad and Isaac Lowe the distance to twice touch down on the canvas with two moments of pure skill.

The Central American wasn’t hurt nor was he bullied to the floor, he was caught by speedy shots so accurate and brilliantly disguised in rounds two and four which saw his legs temporarily fail him.
One of only two stoppage winners on the night was Taylor McGoldrick [3(1)-0], who got Gianni Antoh out after 2:03 of the first round.

The Tyrone super middle made an impressive return from injury and showed his power – however, the real hero of this bout was referee Eamonn Magill who produced the stoppage of the year so far.

When the man in the middle initially jumped in and waved off the fight members of the crowd started to boo and the away corner jumped into the ring ready to protest.

However, once Magill let go of the fighter he had just jumped in front of it was clear to see he was all but out on his feet. The vigilant referee seen something no one else in the venue did and may have saved the Cambridge native, who was out standing up, from some real punishment.

Alfredo Meli [16(5)-0-1] also made short work of his opponent stopping Achilles Szabo in the second round of his first fight in a year, cutting the Hungarian down with bodyshots, while there were shut out points wins for Steve Collins Jr [14(4)-2(0)-1] who was in learning mode, and debutant Callum Bradley [1(0)-0], who soaked up the atmosphere, against Arturs Kulikauskis and Jose Aguilar respectively.


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Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com