Quigg Stops Munyai In Manchester

April 21 2014

Scott Quigg blasts Munyai, Crolla outlasts Murray

Scott Quigg sensationally defended his WBA World super bantamweight title by stopping Tshifhiwa Munyai in the second round of the clash at the Phones4U Arena in Manchester, UK live on Sky Sports HD. The co-feature saw Anthony Crolla prevail via a tenth round stoppage in a hugely anticipated fight against John Murray for Crolla’s WBO Inter-Continental lightweight belt.

The 25 year old Scott Quigg (28-0-2) from Bury, UK was looking to make a statement against the late replacement South African opponent of Tshifhiwa Munyai (28 years old, 24-3-1). Both men had a quiet opener to the first round, but the contest sprang into life in the final seconds as Quigg sent Munyai flying to the canvas with an extremely well concealed, vicious left hook. Munyai was saved by the bell, but was unsteady as he made his way back to his corner.

Munyai seemed to be recovering in the opening seconds of round two, but those thoughts were quickly shattered as Quigg stunned Munyai with a right hook that devastated the South African fighter. Although Munyai managed to beat the referees count, the contest was waved of within a few moments as Quigg unleashed another frightening assault and the referee was forced to stop the contest with 1:14 seconds remaining.

In his immediate post-fight interview, Quigg’s promoter, Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing, said that they will be looking to unify the super bantamweight division with fights against Leo Santa Cruz & Kiko Martinez. When asked about the fight that everyone wants to see against Carl Frampton, Hearn said that they have offered the fight to Frampton’s team, but that they must be forthcoming and that “it takes two to tango”.

The co-feature on the night saw two hometown Mancunians in Anthony Crolla and John Murray face off in a hugely anticipated fight for the former’s WBO Inter-Continental lightweight belt. The fight pitted the slick skills of Crolla against the all-out aggression of John Murray and both men delivered to produce an incredibly exciting contest.

Although each of the first six rounds was close to call, there seemed to be unity amongst boxing pundits and fans that the fight was level at 57-57 at the halfway point. The fight went according to plan with Murray (29 years, 33-3) being the more aggressive fighter from the off and leading in with his head down and swarming around Crolla in close. Crolla (27 years, 28-4-1) appeared to be breathing heavy in the opening rounds, but this was due to the sheer work-rate of Murray giving his opponent not giving him a moment to breath.

However the longer the fight went on the more Crolla was able to land the cleaner punches and there were obvious signs that Murray was beginning to tire dramatically. Murray’s fears were confirmed in the tenth round when the exhausted fighter was sent to the canvas after a left hook from Crolla grazed the head of the extremely likeable boxer. Murray was able to beat the referees count but a picture told a thousand words as the brave, battling warrior’s face was a bloody mess. Following a sustained assault from Crolla, the fight was waved off by the referee with less than 40 seconds to go in the tenth round.

Both men are friends outside of the ring and their post-fight reactions to each other were a fitting end to a tremendous contest. Crolla has previously defeated former world champion Gavin Rees and proved himself on the domestic scene, so will surely now be looking towards a deserved world title shot in 2014.

The Sky Sports broadcast began with one of the hottest prospects in world boxing, Callum Smith, facing Francois Bastient in a contest scheduled for six rounds. The unbeaten Liverpool super middleweight had been out of action since October 2013 due to a hand injury. Smith was in complete control of the fight and after dominating the first two rounds, ‘Mundo’ sent his opponent to the canvas with a devastating right uppercut to the body and the Frenchman’s corner rightly threw in the towel as their fighter struggled to breath after successfully beating the referees count at first. Although Bastient looked out of shape in the ring, he has been a durable fighter and suffered only his fourth stoppage defeat to see his record slide to 43-11-1. Smith, now 10-0 with 8 knockouts, will now be targeting a fight with Tobias Webb on May 17th in Cardiff, Wales in a defence of his WBC International title.

In a Commonwealth featherweight title clash, Josh Warrington successfully defended his belt against Rendall Munroe. At 23 years old, Warrington is 10 years the junior of Munroe, and his youth was evident as he was first to the punch in every roun on his way to extending is unblemished record to 17-0 (2 KOs). Munroe (28-5-1) retired on his stool at the end of the seventh round with a suspected damaged jaw, and looked very much a faded fighter throughout the contest. In his immediate post-fight interview, Munroe did his best to hold back the tears as he seemed to indicate that this was the end of his warrior career.

On one of the floating bouts of the night, Sam Eggington successfully defeated the seasoned journeyman, William Warburton, 60-54 in a six round welterweight shutout. Eggington (20 years old, 10-2) has only suffered defeats in the PrizeFighter tournament and will have been pleased with his performance as he showed fans and pundits alike that he has the talent to progress into a British champion in the future. In the second floating fight, Liam Hanarahan moved to 7-0 thanks to a referees scorecard of 40-36 in his four round super bantamweight clash against Antonio Horvatic (3-4)

The first title fight of the show saw Tyrone Nurse outpoint Tyler Goodjohn to win the vacant English light welterweight belt. Nurse, 24 years old, performed impressively to receive scores of 100-90, 98-92, 98-91 from the three judges at ringside to move his record to 28-1 and pick up the second regional title of his career. Goodjohn’s record slips to 10-3 and the 22 year old will be disappointed that the margin of defeat was so large.

The opening bouts of the evening saw two fights between four inexperienced cruiserweights. The 21 year old Jack Massey moved his unbeaten record to 4-0 with a 38-37 points victory over Danny Fleary (31 years old, 1-2-1), whilst the 20 year old Sam Hyde recorded his second professional win with a first round stoppage over Tommy Grifford (1-3-1). The 22 year old Grifford had previously drawn with Steve Collins Jnr is his last outing earlier this year. Meanwhile Hosea Burton, the well thought of light heavyweight prospect from Joe Gallagher’s Gym, extended the solid start to his career by outpointing Valentin Freulon 80-73 to take his record to 9-0 (2 KOs), whilst the Frenchman slips to 9-2-2.