Terry Flanagan struggled to pin down the talented New Orleans light-welterweight. Prograis moved well and stymied the Briton’s work with accurate jabs and deft footwork. Against a fellow southpaw, Regis brought in strong one-twos and in the second half of the fight looked ever more assured as he edged on to the front foot to drive Flanagan back.
In the eighth round Prograis put Flanagan down with a long left over the top. Regis piled on to exert pressure, hammering punches home. He landed a vicious three-punch combination to the head and almost knocked Flanagan off his feet. He fell into the ropes but remained in trouble. Prograis landed a lovely left uppercut, winging in punches at will But Flanagan managed to tough it out.
In the ninth another big left shook him up. Flanagan got a jab on Prograis but couldn’t unsettle him.
The home town favourite aimed jabs to the body and continued to control the bout as Flanagan manoeuvred round him. Terry fought back in the last round but could not change the momentum of the fight.
Prograis won a unanimous decision, 117-110 from Bruce McDaniel, 118-109 from Keith Thibodeaux and 119-108 from Jack Woodburn.
“I wanted to bring big time boxing back to New Orleans and guess what I did it,” Prograis said. “I went out there, I boxed my a** off… I showed you I can go 12 rounds with a world class fighter.
“It was all fun for me.”
In the other World Boxing Super Series quarter-final Ivan Baranchyk won the vacant IBF super-lightweight title as he forced Anthony Yigit out after seven rounds.
Even though Yigit was putting in a game display and showing plenty of resistance, Baranchyk was beginning to take over and outmuscle his opponent. It was a rough, bloody fight and Baranchyk had a point deducted for pulling his opponent’s head down. Yigit suffered a horrendous swelling round his left eye, closing it completely. Under advice from the doctor referee Phil Edwards halted Yigit, who did want to continue.
“I am a fighter and you never want a fight to be stopped. Maybe it was the right decision, people are telling me it was pretty bad,” Yigit said.
“Our gameplan was to take him later on, because we felt like he was gassing out,” he added. “Because they stopped the fight I couldn’t fulfil the gameplan.
“He deserves this win, all the best to him.”
Baranchyk moves on in the competition. “I feel good, I wasn’t technical but I win this fight,” he said. “He’s a tough and I love this. I love to fight, I love to fight Mexican style. Anthony is a good guy.”