Anthony Crolla produced a career-best performance to take victory in the Manchester derby and inflict another loss on former training partner John Murray at the Phones 4U Arena.
The lightweight star stuck to his coach Joe Gallagher’s pre-fight gameplan, weathering an early storm from Murray, to come into the fight midway through and eventually prevail late on.
Murray predictably ran out of steam down the home stretch as Crolla picked him apart, and after slumping to the canvas in the tenth from a glancing blow, referee Terry O’Connor saved the former world title challenger from further punishment.
‘Million Dollar’ Crolla is now if the frame for a possible world championship shot of his own with the win as Murray contemplates where he takes his career following another damaging defeat.
In the co-feature, Undefeated Scott Quigg produced a devastating display to retain his WBA super-bantamweight title at the expense of late replacement challenger Tshifhiwa Munyai.
The 25 year-old, who was originally due to meet Nehomar Cermeno, made light work or Munyai after putting him on the floor with both hands. Referee Howard Foster stepped in to declare Quigg the winner in the second round following a crushing knockdown that saw Munyai lose his equilibrium.
Fights with rival Carl Frampton or world champions Leo Santa Cruz and Kiko Martinez have now become a real possibility for Manchester’s Quigg, who impressed the viewing public – which included a Stateside pay-per-view audience.
Also on the bill, former world title challenger and crowd favourite Rendall Munroe may have fought his last bout after being dominated by Commonwealth featherweight champion Josh Warrington. The Leicester fighter retired on his stool with a damaged mouth after seven rounds following a one-sided contest in favour of the Leeds man.
Afterwards, Munroe was close to tears as he admitted that his career was over.
Earlier, Callum Smith brushed aside the experienced Francois Bastient to take his record to 10-8, 8 KO’s with a third round stoppage win over the Frenchman, whilst Tyrone Nurse dominated Tyler Goodjohn over ten rounds.
More results to follow…
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