MARTIN HARKIN has endured a frustrating time waiting for his Celtic welterweight title shot, with many previous opponents pulling out through injury, but made the most of his opportunity against Ally Black at the Doubletree Hilton in Glasgow on Friday (May 31).

In the headline fight of an Alba Promotions card, Black started well but in the second round was dropped by a big right hand and then repeatedly caught with uppercuts throughout the rest of round.

Black came out blasting for the remainder of the contest, yet the the old adage of bringing a knife to a gun fight seemed apt as he found himself outgunned and viciously dropped in the fourth. It was then referee Victor Loughlin dispensed with the count at 1-14.

Kirkintilloch’ Black, the victim of a bad knockout, thankfully recovered after treatment from medics and Harkin, from Dumbarton, celebrated both his 10th straight pro win and his maiden title.

Gorbals super-bantamweight Joe Ham scored a first-round stoppage over Jerson Larios when a great left hook to the body crumpled the Nicaraguan. He beat the count, but Ham’s relentless pressure was enough for referee Darren Maxwell to stop the scheduled six-rounder at 2-19 of its opener.

Glaswegian Scott McCormack, meanwhile, edged a scrappy four-round bantamweight affair against Lancashire’s Steven Maguire 39-38, and Regan Glackin coasted to a comfortable 40-36 points win over Chris Adaway in a lightweight bout. Paul O’Connor refereed both contests.

The Verdict Harkin deserves long awaited title.