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Taylor destroys Martin/Donaire shocks Burnett

Josh Taylor Vs Ryan Martin
Josh Taylor Vs Ryan Martin

By Steven Bateson


Josh Taylor put on an absolute masterclass in Glasgow on Saturday night as he dismantled Ryan Martin in seven rounds to retain the WBC Silver Super Lightweight Title and book his place in the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series.


Taylor, roared on by his partisan crowd, was brimming with confidence from the outset and continuously pumped straight shots into the body of the visitor. Martin looked rigid, almost shellshocked, as Taylor began to put together flashy combinations to head and body.


The right hand to the body was echoing around the arena and Taylor was really investing in the work downstairs, Martin choosing to keep a tight high guard and almost allowing Taylor to punch at will. Taylor flashed an uppercut through the guard of Martin in the second and by the end of the round it was clear that Abel Sanchez was very worried about the chances of his fighter.


Martin looked flustered and bamboozled as the beatdown continued. Taylor was blistering and cerebral with sickening bodyshots and then he began to go upstairs, driving hooks around the guard of Martin and exposing flaws in that side of his defence. Martin’s right eye was swollen and his left eye cut by the end of the sixth as the punch picking perfection continued from the Scotsman.


It was tremendous in every single department as Taylor crushed every ounce of confidence that Martin had coming into the fight. They said Martin had fast hands but we never once witnessed any evidence of that, the first meaningful flurry of punches he threw came after six rounds of being punched around the ring.


Martin continued to look rigid and he was now showing clear signs that the body shots were taking their toll. Taylor was upping the pace and the American quite simply couldn’t match it, a left and right hook combination shaking him to his boots in the seventh. Taylor then landed another left hook, catching Martin high on the head, and staggered his opponent into the ropes. Martin was complaining about a shot to the back of the head, neglecting any defence, and Taylor poured it on with a bombarding flurry that put Martin down. Referee, Victor Loughlin chose to end the fight there and then and there can be no complaints because Martin really did not want to know, he was just looking for an excuse.


It was a mesmeric performance from Taylor (now 14-0 with 12 KO’s) and he now progresses to the semi finals for his first world title shot; a showdown with the IBF king Ivan Baranchyk. Taylor’s skillset and tenacity put him on a pedestal that most fighters can only dream of, he may very well be one of the next big superstars of boxing.


Nonito Donaire defeated Ryan Burnett via fourth round retirement, taking the WBA and WBC Diamond Bantamweight Championships and a place in the World Boxing Super Series Semi Finals, after a bizarre injury sustained by Burnett.


The fight was starting to warm into a very interesting affair and Burnett was boxing perfectly up until that point but seemed to throw out his back/hip whilst attempting a right hand, his corner making the correct decision at the end of the round to withdraw their man from the contest.


Burnett began the contest with lightning handspeed, feinting in and out of range whilst snapping Donaire’s head back with jabs. Donaire was constantly stalking, looking for his trademark left hook, but was finding it difficult to pin Burnett down.


The defending champion was continuing to display great head and upper body movement in the second round and then landed a big right hand as Donaire struggled to get out of range. Burnett was backing onto the ropes and inviting pressure but then negotiated it well, punctuating it with a flashy combo that ended with a sharp left uppercut.


Filipino Flash had a lot more success in the third as he pushed Burnett back and was able to time his right hand a lot more, causing a little reddening around Burnett’s face. But the Irishman soaked up the pressure and then answered back with a one-two combination that rocked Donaire onto his heels, both men were having early success and growing in confidence.


Donaire was throwing plenty of big shots of his own, the four weight world champion back at his optimum weight, but Burnett was back behind his jab in the fourth and was looking to reaffirm his speed advantage, both hand and foot. He swung to land a right hand but then went down on one knee, clutching his back and wincing in agony. There was an air of shock in the arena as Burnett took the eight count and then Donaire poured it on with a blistering flurry in the corner, Burnett unable to do anything but absorb the barrage coming his way.


It was a dreadfully unfortunate turn of events for the Irishman and it was clear as he hobbled back to his corner at the end of the fourth that he could not continue. He intimated that he could no longer throw his right hand without serious pain and, trainer, Adam Booth consoled his fighter as he took the decision to stop the contest at that juncture.


Burnett can certainly come again and will fight the best in this division when the tournament reaches its conclusion, a re-match with Donaire is extremely likely down the line, but for now it is the Filipino who moves on to meet WBO boss Zolani Tete in a semi final unification contest some time in the spring.


Zach Parker took the vacant British Super Middleweight Championship over Darryl Williams via a very controversial split decision in a battle of the undefeated, most observers believing Williams had done more than enough to earn the victory.


Derby’s Parker was working well off the jab in the first round as he manoeuvred around Williams’ bullish style, Williams was attempting to trap his man in the corner and bang away but was caught by a solid check left hook for his troubles.


Questions will then be asked as to whether Parker sustained an injury to his left arm as he switched to a southpaw stance and threw very little from the left for the remainder of the contest. Williams was pushing the action now and he rocked Parker as they traded left hooks and then drilled him with a huge overhand right as Parker tried to move out of range.


Parker (now 17-0 with 11 KO’s) was struggling to keep the relentless Williams off now and ate a left hook in the third as he tried to keep out of danger, too often he was leaving himself square on out of exchanges and Williams was finding him an easy target.


Williams’ head movement was causing all sorts of problems as he bobbed and weaved into range, hammering the body of his opponent whenever possible, and through the middle rounds he was able to dominate proceedings with his superior workrate and punch output, Parker only able to mount singular efforts in return. If truth be told it looked more like Parker was aiming to survive rather than win the contest at this point.


Williams’ pace did slow slightly as the fight progressed to the championship rounds, the first time both men went twelve, and Parker was able to re-establish a one armed offense and gain a little traction in the bout. He made Williams miss wildly at times whilst peppering him with jabs but he couldn’t land anything to dent the forward momentum of the English champion. Williams was still pushing the pace, making his opponent look uncomfortable, and giving Parker all he could handle during the inside exchanges.


It was a game effort from Parker, if indeed he was injured, but there was nobody at ringside that believed he had won the fight. Williams dominated large periods and was always the aggressor, Parker looks devoid of ideas at times and frustrated at his inability to establish himself in the contest. There will be big calls for a re-match here. The judge who scored it by five to Parker should be investigated for incompetence.


Scorecards read: 117-112 (A ludicrous card) 115-114 Parker, 115-113 Williams


Paul Butler got back to winning ways with a comfortable ten round decision over France’s Yoan Boyeaux.


It was a much sharper, confident display from Butler than the last time he saw action, a one sided beating from Emmanuel Rodriguez, as he controlled the range and pace against the game but limited opposition.


Butler’s variety of work and handspeed was the difference, constantly drubbing Boyeaux with a left hook to the body in the early stages before punishing him with blistering combinations as the fight progressed. Butler couldn’t miss with the jab straight through the guard but Boyeaux constantly pressed forward, despite the one sided natured of the bout, and had some productivity, himself, in the fifth with three solid right hands as Butler switched off.


The Frenchmen was hurt briefly in the seventh from a right hand from the Elsmere Port man but stuck in there resolutely as Butler went through the motions on way to a decisive victory.


Butler (now 27-2 with 14 KO’s), a reserve for the Bantamweight tournament, will be looking to get back into the world mix sooner rather than later although the jury is still out on whether he belongs at that level.


Referee scored it: 99-91


Former WBC Super Lightweight Champion Viktor Postol cantered to a points victory against the overmatched Siar Ozgul.


Postol’s last fight was a close fought twelve round defeat to Josh Taylor whilst Ozgul was stopped during a defence of his Southern Area Championship, that should give some indication of the levels between the two competitors.


Postol (now 30-2 with 12 KO’s) was always in control, boxing within himself for the most part, and he’ll be looking for higher levels of competition following this. The Ukrainian is a reserve for the main tournament, hence his participation here tonight, but the matchmakers could have extended themselves to a more realistic challenge.


Referee scored the bout: 99-91


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