THE super-lightweight and featherweight finalists of the Golden Contract tournament were confirmed after four 10-round semi-finals at York Hall in Bethnal Green on Friday night (February 21).
The sole early finish came in the Ohara Davies–Jeff Ofori fight, with the former winning at 1-06 of the sixth.
Despite being dropped at the end of the third, Ofori never stopped trying and gave his Hackney opponent some uncomfortable moments in the bout. However, Davies’ power proved too much for the Tottenham switch-hitter to handle, with an assortment of heavy right hands eventually bringing about the referee’s intervention.
“I was amazed by his chin,” Davies said after the contest. “I hit him with shot after shot and I was surprised he was still on his feet at the end. I don’t believe people can live with me when I land that much.”
The tall and rangy McKenna was at his best when jabbing from range, yet many observers felt that Mimoune deserved the verdict due to his success on the inside. Nevertheless, at the conclusion of an exciting and competitive all-southpaw tussle, it was McKenna who had his arm raised. The final scores were 97-93 and 96-94 twice.
A pair of knockdowns – in the sixth and ninth rounds – helped Cromer’s Ryan Walsh to a unanimous points victory over Derry portsider Tyrone McCullagh, who had never previously tasted defeat.
McCullagh began brightly but Walsh picked up the pace and was in command for much of the second half. The long-reigning British titlist was awarded two tallies of 97-91 and one of 96-92.
The other featherweight semi-final saw Liverpool left-hander Jazza Dickens grind out a hard-earned win over Gedling’s Commonwealth champ Leigh Wood via majority decision.
The action ebbed and flowed in a tough and bruising encounter, but it was Dickens who got the nod from the judges at the finish. Marks of 96-94 and 95-94 in favour of the former WBA super-bantamweight title challenger overrode one tied card of 95-95.