Gammer makes breakthrough
By Daniel Heath, Ringside Photos by Karl Stubbs (May 17, 2005) 
All Photo © Karl Stubbs
Scott Gammer produced his breakthrough win with an eighth-round stoppage of local favourite Mark Krence at the Octagon Centre, Sheffield on Sunday. The ten-round fight was billed as an official eliminator for Matt Skelton's British heavyweight title.

The bout started well for English champion Krence. The Chesterfield fighter dominated the centre of the ring in the first with a strong accurate jab keeping his Welsh opponent away. The second was more even. Mark's jab still seemed to control the action, but Scott began to have his own successes and seemed to be landing the meatier blows.

By the third the worm was beginning to turn and the Pembroke man started to push Krence back. His own jab was having success and some good right hands earned him the round. By the fourth Scott was on top. A right through the middle, early in the round, sent Krence back against the ropes and Gammer followed up, trapping the Derbyshire fighter in the corner. Scott kept up the momentum throughout the round scoring with numerous hooks from both hands.

Both fighters seemed more cautious in the fifth. This seemed to reassert Mark's confidence and he got to work behind his jab again. Gammer landed a decent right towards the end of the session, but it was the home man's round. Scott came out a lot more aggressively in the sixth, however. He started to throw more combinations off his jab and Krence began to struggle. Gammer kept the tempo up in the seventh, and although Mark upped his own work-rate, Scott produced the quality work. His left hands, in particular, scored well in the session.

Whilst the Welshman looked a strong favourite by this stage, the end was still a little surprising when it came. Krence came out in the eighth with renewed purpose and his jab was again winning him the round. However, Scott produced a powerful left hook to send Mark into the ropes and was merciless in his follow-up. He swarmed all over the Englishman and a solid right uppercut prompted the Krence corner to throw in the towel, signalling referee Terry O'Connor to stop the contest after exactly two minutes of round eight.

After the fight Scott's trainer Paul Boyce described his charge as “technically one of the best heavyweights in the world”. He was sceptical that Gammer was ready for a title shot just yet, however.

Krence's promoter Dennis Hobson put his man's display down to a lack of self-belief and him allowing his opponent to dictate the pace of the fight. He was adamant, however, in his belief that Mark would one day fight for the British title and remarked he had a history of bringing fighters back from defeat - IBF light-heavyweight champion Clinton Woods being a prime example.

Stoke lightweight Scott Lawton went over old ground, out-pointing dangerous Walsall southpaw Carl Allen over six threes. This after seeing fights with man-of-the-hour Ricky Burns and Celtic champion Martin Watson fail to materialise in the past week.

The contest began as a fairly cagey affair and few meaningful punches were thrown in the first, although Scott clearly won the round behind his left jab. The second was much the same, until Allen connected with a decent left hook which seemed to momentarily rock the Midlands Area champion. Lawton regained control as the round went on however and, for me, produced the more accurate shots to clinch the round.

By the third Scott fired the odd combination and showed good defensive skills, before in the fourth he began to target the body. He started to open up a little in the fifth. A left hook landed flush and some decent rights began to get through. Carl came out more aggressively in the last, ripping in a decent body shot to open the session. Scott produced some good lefts though to clinch the final stanza and the fight, 60-54 from referee Phil Edwards.

Fight of the afternoon was the show opener, over six twos, between unbeaten Chesterfield cruiser Danny Grainger and former Commonwealth title challenger, Birmingham based Zimbabwean Hastings Rasani. The away fighter kept up his recent good run by stopping the house fighter in the fifth.

Grainger was on top throughout the first, until Hastings produced a hard left cross late in the session to floor the Derbyshire fighter. He then produced a crunching left hook in the second to repeat the feat.

Grainger fashioned a spirited third round to get himself back into the fight, but it was short lived as Rasani's heavier blows earned him the fourth. By the fifth the end was imminent and the African produced a big right cross at 1:51 of the session, which sent Danny crashing against the ropes and forced referee Edwards to stop the contest.

Local sensation, Sheffield's Kell Brook continued his learning curve with a comfortable six twos win over Stourport hardman Ernie Smith.

Brook produced his usual flashy, switch-hitting performance in the first couple of rounds, left hands in particular causing damage. A left uppercut was probably his best punch of the fight. It prompted a joking response from Smith, but Ernie seemed disorientated.

A stiff jab bloodied the journeyman's nose in the fourth and a solid uppercut caused more facial damage. Brook seemed to be a little less dominant in the last couple of rounds, perhaps losing his concentration a little. One could strongly argue Ernie's more aggressive approach earned him the last round, but the official tally read 60-54 for the local man.

Stuart Brooks from nearby Mexborough (trained by former light-heavy contender Mark Brookes) did well on his debut, out-pointing Pontypridd's Geraint Harvey over six twos at light-middleweight.

Stuart started a little nervously and the Welshman had early success, but by the end of the first he seemed to have settled into his rhythm. By the second the well-supported Brooks was producing accurate left hooks and hurtful body shots and Harvey began to move into his shell. This pattern continued until the end the contest, by which point Brooks' left hands dominated the action and earned him a 60-54 points win.
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