An out-of-sorts Derry Mathews suffered a ninth career defeat on Saturday night as a determined Stephen Ormond retained his WBO European lightweight title over ten rounds.
It was clear from the off that Irishman Ormond was going to take the fight to Mathews, as the Liverpudlian struggled to find any rhythm and the champion racked up the rounds.
Current Commonwealth title holder Mathews, 30, whose belt was not on the line, only managed to get a share of one round for me as Ormond took the fight 98-93 (twice) and 98-92 with the judges.
Matthews leant over the ropes at the end of the contest and began asking media ringside how they scored the fight, probably knowing deep down that he didn’t do enough to take the victory.
‘Dirty’ Derry also alluded to a possible broken hand, which he said may have occurred in the second round, and was clearly in pain as he made his way to the dressing room after the final announcement.
In chief support, Paul Butler took part in the fight of the night against Mexican Ruben Montoya, adding the vacant WBA Intercontinental super-flyweight title to his WBO version in a cracking battle.
Ellesmere Port’s finest engaged with a game Montoya regularly throughout the encounter, with the fight probably a shade closer than the final scorecards of 120-108, 120-109 and 118-110.
Also on the bill, Enzo Maccarinelli made a successful first defence of his Commonwealth light-heavyweight belt as the Welshman put Courtney Fry down twice on his way to seventh round stoppage.
The former world cruiserweight title holder looked in good form and was never troubled by Fry, but like Mathews, may have suffered some hand damage in the fight that will need some recovery.
Joe Selkirk also claimed a title belt on the undercard by stopping the hapless Zoltan Sera in just three rounds as he picked up the WBO European light-middleweight title without much fuss.
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Pictures by Emma Terese