The 22-year-old’s fifth early win out of five in 2019 was achieved with the minimum of fuss. Fujimoto, in his first appearance outside of his home country, was wary from the outset.
British and Commonwealth king Dubois boxed patiently in the first round, with jabs preceding weighty hooks. When a jolting jab put Fujimoto down in the second, the signs were not good for the red-headed Tokyo man. To substantiate this fact, a destructive right hand from the Londoner emphatically brought about the finish soon after at 2-10.
Upcoming European title challenger Joe Joyce – a potential future opponent of Dubois – was an interested observer at ringside.
Clydach Vale’s Williams – a two-division British titlist – started brightly in the opening round by dominating his American rival with quick, forceful jabs and heavy backhands. Yet it was Williams who finished the session with a nick by his left eye.
The 6ft 4in Fox began to settle into the contest in the second, with his jab and strikes to the midsection coming into play. Williams, however, was still punching with dangerous intent, as evidenced by a solid right that landed in the third. Fox walked back to his corner at the end of the round sporting a gash on the bridge of his nose.
In the fourth, Williams broke through to deck Fox with a perfectly placed right hand down the middle. The menacing Welshman continued to attack the visitor with gusto in round five, and things got worse for the Marylander when he was deducted a point for holding. The deduction was then rendered irrelevant by Williams, who battered his foe with a vicious two-fisted salvo to necessitate the stoppage at 2-59.
Regarded as one of the top prospects in the lighter weight classes, Edwards worked effectively from range in a competitive opener. Braithwaite, though, managed to close the distance more in the second round, which enabled the Liverpudlian to demonstrate his strength on the inside, where he scored with hooks to the body.
Exhibiting impressive feints and footwork, Edwards picked his opponent off with some sweet single strikes in the third, and Braithwaite’s face began to mark up from the shots coming his way in round four.
The fifth was a scrappier session but the classier work came from Edwards. Braithwaite’s use of increased upper-body movement stunted his adversary’s success somewhat in the sixth, yet the young Croydon talent was still able to force the issue and remain in the ascendancy.
After a slow start to the eighth, Braithwaite – the reigning English champion – connected with a clean right-left combination out of nowhere to drop Edwards and take a much-needed 10-8 round. The unbeaten favourite regained his composure in the next stanza to hit the target with jabs and follow-up rights, as Braithwaite failed to maintain his momentum.
Braithwaite was warned for using his head in round nine, and it was a clash of heads that left Edwards with a cut above his right eye. The stocky Merseysider had his moments in the 10th, but Edwards continued to rack up points with his fast fists.
Braithwaite searched for right hands over the top in the 11th, but Edwards nimbly avoided the incoming fire. Sunny then navigated through the final frame successfully to triumph by tallies of 118-109 and 117-110 twice.