Super-Welterweight Tony Dixon (9-1, 3 KO’s) brought the curtain down on the Saniger promotional card “Crunch Time” in double quick time on Saturday night, needing just 100 seconds to knockout Mike Jones (2-3) to capture the Welsh title at Rhydycar Leisure Centre, Merthyr Tydfil.
The 24-Year-old was originally scheduled to face Dale Evans but due to unforeseen circumstances, the contest fell by the wayside which was also followed by his replacement in the once beaten Damon Jones.
Acting quickly for the third time, Saniger saved the night’s main event by bringing in Mike Jones on short notice who looked physically imposing at the weigh in with a height / reach advantage over Dixon.
Knowing his disadvantages Dixon started the contest by moving in quickly to get inside the guard of Jones to neutralise the threat, stunning Jones in the process with a hard overhand right which dropped him hard through the bottom ropes.
Jones did well to find his feet before the count of ten but found the canvas shortly after from an identical shot, referee Martin Williams took a close look but found reason to allow the fight to continue, an action which Jones would regret after a hard left hook brought home the victory for Dixon moments later, the visitor landing face first on the canvas to crown a new Welsh champion.
The Heavyweight encounter of the night brought with it Controversy which was met by boos from the knowledgeable crowd who like me thought that the wrong man had his hand raised, Stockport heavyweight Chris Healy (6-4, 2KO) was adjudged to have taken a decision over Aberdare’s Dorian Darch (12-4, 1KO).
Darch seemed to control the action from the opening bell, manoeuvring Healy around the ring, cutting him over the ear from his various cuffing shots.
In the second half of the fight, Darch looked fatigued from the pace set but was still able to walk down Healy who threw shots that mostly landed on the arms of the Aberdare resident.
Darch not for the first time had blood flowing down the side of his face from an accidental headbutt which further spurred him on but from the referee’s perspective didn’t do enough to secure the win much to the anguish of the onlooking public.
The hometown support brought the noise levels up a few octaves in the night’s third encounter, having much to cheer about, Treharris’ Gavin Gwynne outpointed Jamie Quinn over six rounds.
It was the first time in which Gwynne had done the six-round distance, not that you would have known, starting at a quick pace which was maintained for the duration.
Quinn who for the most part was forced to cover up, was unable to match the pace of the 6-foot lightweight, getting swallowed by the current from the wave after wave of offensive artillery that ‘GG’ employed.
Gwynne dictated the action behind a good jab which he used to work in effective uppercuts which broke the high guard of Quinn in taking a 60-54 score from the referee in another faultless display.
Having to adjust to his second late replacement, It was a case of third time lucky for Swansea Lightweight Kristian Touze (2-0) who brought his nine month’s of inactivity to an end with a solid points victory over Adam Bannister (0-1);.
Impressive in his approach, Touze countered every move his opponent made, advantages in speed paying dividends in catching the marauding Bannister coming in before cutely circling away from any repercussions.
It was a solid win for Touze who takes his record to 2-0 but more pleasing from myself as a fight fan was the generosity shown by Touze who gave his fight purse to charity afterwards.
One of Wales’ best prospects, JJ Evans (4-0) showed us the reasoning for his high regard with a brilliant display of boxing in outpointing one of Britain’s best journeymen in William Warburton (23-108-9, 4KO).
Warming to the occasion JJ found openings late on in the contest due to Warburton abandonment of his defence in search of another upset, the visitor swarming forward in the hope of adding JJ’s name to that of his countrymen Mano Lee and Lewis Rees who have come unstuck by the Atherton spoiler.
Evans wasn’t about to let that happen, staying composed the 10-time Welsh champion landed the sharper shots, catching Warburton with hooks and the occasional uppercut to ward off the danger that was present.
It was another good display from JJ who had his hand raised by a score of 40-38.
Tredegar’s Ricky Rowlands (1-0) showed little to no effect of nervousness from his professional debut, landing with thudding body shots which revibrated from the rafters of the sports hall on route to winning a decision over the winless Paul Cummings (0-5).
The debut was a long time in waiting and Rowlands took out those frustrations on Cummings with a show of power. Cummings offered very little but found himself hitting shadows when he thought the opportunity presented itself in an impressive first showing from the Jamie Arthur trained fighter
Penygraig’s Welterweight Stuart Brewer (2-0) scored a knockdown points victory over Jack Glass (0-12) by a score of 40-35 in the nights opener.
Brewer made his reintroduction to Welsh fight fans following a five-year hiatus, doing so with aplomb.
Glass having taken the fight on late notice sensed a chance to upset the odds but found a fighter who was on his game.
Brewer switched stances from time to time was able to land frequently in the four rounder, steadily upping the power stakes in the fourth, landing a right hand that dropped Glass to the canvas temporarily.
Glass made it to his feet before the count of 10 but without any time on the timekeeper’s clock to find the stoppage it was left to the judging who scored the fight 40-35.
Highlights of all the night’s coverage will be shown on S4C Y Ffeit at 21:30