Liverpool Light-Heavyweight talent Thomas Whittaker-Hart moved to 5-0 with a hard-fought points win over Bradford’s Jermaine Springer in the opening bout of the evening at The SSE Arena, Wembley.
The Tony Bellew-managed 25-year-old, who was making his debut as a Matchroom fighter after signing promotional terms with Eddie Hearn last month, went eight rounds for the first time in his professional career.
Whittaker-Hart was pushed all the way in his toughest assignment to date, but the former Team GB amateur standout used his superior boxing skills to take a 79-74 victory on the referee’s scorecard.
“I feel like I boxed okay,” Whittaker-Hart told Matchroom afterward. “I’ve had a long time out of the ring. It’s been a year out of the ring for me. I could have done a bit more. My sharpness wasn’t 100% there. I’ll get more experience with a few more fights under my belt. I’m a little bit disappointed, but it is what it is. I was drawing him into the counters. I wasn’t getting my shots off enough. I feel okay.
“I’ve had a long year. I wasn’t too well in January. I was in the hospital. It’s been a strange year for me. I’m just happy to be back in the ring doing what I do best and getting a good win under my belt. I felt the pace a little bit at the end. I’ve only ever done a six-rounder, but it only went five. This was a step up in rounds for me. It’s one of them. It’ll come in good time.
“I don’t want to box journeymen. It’s not what I’m about. I want to keep getting tested as I go up the levels. I want to box the best people that I can. I couldn’t ask for a better team around me. I’ve got Tony looking after me as well. I can’t ask for much more. Fighting with no crowd wasn’t any different. You don’t even notice it, to be honest.”