On Wednesday they showed their dislike for one another at the press conference ahead of their derby meeting, for the Lonsdale belt. Quigley who said “I am British champion and it is going to stay that way. “I do not want to give it away, especially to Paul Smith. Started the fight trying to draw Smiths lead, while Smith who has an habit of standing off at times made a steady start.
Both landing good punches at times throughout the first five rounds, it was hard to split the two. Smith suffered a cut to his right eye in the 5th and Mick Williamson went to work to stem the blood into his eye. The fight was beginning to get a little untidy and Quigly was just about in front by the mid stage.
Referee Richie Davis warned the both fighters to tidy up there act at the start of the sixth and the change in tempo in the 6th round suited Smith who began to land the cleaner punches.
The fight so close at this stage was becoming a case of who wanted it more, and with none of them looking to hide or take a backwards step, they were willing to trade, although the fight was still a little scruffy.
Judge Phil Edwards scored the bout 116-114 to Quigley, but Smith found favour with Howard Foster (116-113) and Ian John-Lewis (116-112). A majority decision for Paul Smith who becomes the new British Super middleweight champion.
Promoter Frank Warren promised the Liverpool crowd a rematch between the pair, whose bitter personal relationship had dominated the build up to the bout.
“My heart and fitness got me through,” Smith said. “I was awful in the middle rounds, I was thinking too much, but when I let the hands go I did OK.”
There had been plenty of rivalry between the cross-city rivals, but the bad feeling seemed to have eased afterwards. “I’ve had Tony Quigley on my brain since March,” Smith said. “I’m sick of the sight of his face. But it’s boxing and you have to have a bit of spite.”
On the under card, Olympic gold medalist James DeGale made it four wins from four with a third-round stoppage victory over Ally Morrison.
after the fight he said on Sky Sports. “I’m enjoying what I do, This is my job. He was tough in there, but it’s going to take a better fighter than that to beat me. “I’m learning. I’ve had to make a fresh start from being an amateur – but I’m strong and I know where I’m going.
“I’m learning. I’ve had to make a fresh start from being an amateur – but I’m strong and I know where I’m going.
The 23-year-old Londoner came into the contest against unbeaten novice Morrison (2-0-1) aiming to make it three first-round stoppages in a row after impressing in his past two outings.
While he failed to do that it was another good performance by DeGale, who landed hard shots throughout the fight before stepping up the pressure with a series of left hooks to finish Morrison.
Former world amateur champion Frankie Gavin continued his perfect start to life as a professional with a second-round stoppage win over veteran Steve Saville.
Frank Warren told Sky Sports that Gavin could be ready to go for a title next year if he continues to progress and improve as he is doing. Gavin is looking more adapted to the pro ranks, and looked accomplished in his work tonight.
Liverpool’s heavyweight hope Tony ‘Bomber’ Bellew continues his professional career with an impressive first round stoppage win over the dangerous Hungarian Jindrich Velecky, who going into the fight had a record of 15 knockouts in his 16 wins. after the fight Bellew said, “I’m a smashing machine, it’s just what I do,”