Highly regarded Liverpool prospect James ‘Jazza’ Dickens added the British Masters Silver super bantamweight title to his résumé last night when he defeated Merthyr Tydfil’s Dai Davies over ten rounds at the Liverpool Olympia. Dickens who weighed in at 122lb was conceding four pounds in weight to his Welsh opponent. A sparse crowd at the venue made for a strange atmosphere and there was a possibility that the subdued mood played a part in a strangely lacklustre performance from the 22 year old Liverpool fighter.
Dickens came out in the first round looking tense, but was still dictating the pace and took the first round comfortably. The second round saw Dickens try to draw Matthews onto him in an attempt to try to counter punch the Welsh fighter, but Davies is a wily old operator and refused to play along. In rounds three and four Dickens upped the pace a bit and started to let his shots go, winning the rounds comfortably but still fighting well within himself. ‘Jazza’ is a crafty fighter and is tipped by many to have a glittering career in the sport but has disappointed in his last two outings, it may well be that Dickens needs a better class of opponent to bring out the best in him.
The middle rounds belonged to the Liverpool fighter as Davies was offering only token attacks and was content to fight on the defensive, landing occasionally to the body but not offering much more. As the fight progressed it became a scrappier affair and the 22 year old from Liverpool was struggling to look good against the defensive style of Davies. At the end of the bout referee Mark Lyson scored the bout 99-93 in favour of the Scouse fighter.
Dickens’ gym mates Ryan Farrag, Nathan Brough and Steven Lewis all chalked up wins to make it a clean sweep for the Everton Red Triangle gym, Farrag faced the underrated Iraqi born but Wales based Najah Ali. Ali, who holds a win over former Commonwealth super flyweight champion Don Broadhurst, decked Farrag in round one. Farrag looked more shocked than hurt and managed to maintain his composure and showed great heart by firing back and doing enough to seal a 59-57 win on referee Alvin Lynch’s scorecard. Brough had an easier time of it as he won every round against Birmingham’s Jason Nesbitt, Brough who was supposed to have been facing former world title contender Graham Earl fought well against the tough Midlander and landed some heavy looking body shots as he took the bout 60-54 on the referee’s scorecard. Steven Lewis upped his record 3-0(2) as he stopped Hungarian Joszef Garai after two minutes and twenty six seconds of round one, Garai was down twice before referee Mark Lyson waved the bout off.
Irish fighter Ryan Burnett has endured a tough time since leaving the amateur game and an irregularity in a brain scan left him side-lined for over a year, but a recent doctor’s report showed that the irregularity was nothing to worry about and he was granted a pro licence by the BBBoC. With promoter Ricky Hatton in his corner, the 21 year old faced Hungarian opponent Laszlo Nemesapati Jr. The Hungarian looked totally mismatched as he stood in his corner wearing a green Mickey Mouse tee shirt and a pair of trunks that looked like they last saw action when the great Hungarian fighter Laszlo Papp was at his peak. From the off Nemesapati Jr was out of his depth and it was difficult to believe that he had won a fight during his professional career, one can only guess at the level of his vanquished opponent. As expected Burnett made short work of his outmatched foe and stopped him after a little over a minute of round one.
The best fight of the night was a four round cruiserweight contest between Wayne Adeniyi of Rock Ferry and Moses Matuvo originally from Uganda but now based in Bangor, Northern Ireland. Both fighters came to attack and Matuvo entertained the crowd with his antics as he wound up his punches, feinted and danced in front of Adeniyi. In the second round a left hook from Adeniyi decked Matuvo and the Ugandan had to take a mandatory from referee Alvin Lynch. Round four saw Matuvo warned for continual showboating by referee Lynch, and the last minute saw both fighters trade blows and land some heavy looking shots. At the end of the fight the referee scored the bout 40-35 in favour of Adeniyi.
Other bouts on the card saw debutant Dean Swanson from Kirkby outpoint tough veteran Kristian Laight over four rounds, Swanson’s gym mates Carl Dilks and Louis Cuddy both scored wins as Dilks survived a cut above his left eye as he outpointed tough Derby cruiserweight Elvis Dube over four rounds. Cuddy however had a much easier night as he knocked out Hungarian Patrik Palik with a vicious right hook to the body and Palik failed to beat referee Mark Lyson’s count and was beaten after only eighty one seconds of the first round. Irish prospect James Tennyson took his record to 7-0(6) with a second round win over another Hungarian, David Kanalas. Liverpool lightweight Tommy Carus defeated Liam Ellis of Llanelli over four rounds to take his record to 6-1, the sole defeat on his record being against tough Yousef Al Hamidi.