Lewis Ritson and Ricky Burns score victories in Sunderland

Lewis Ritson returned to winning ways in style as he defeated Christian Uruzquieta at Probellum Unstoppable on Saturday.

Probellum’s inaugural show in the UK was held in association with Phil Jeffries at the Rainton Arena in Sunderland, and featured a number of extremely entertaining battles.

Along with Ritson’s victory, there were wins for the likes of Thomas Patrick Ward, Ricky Burns, Mark Dickinson and more, on an evening which also saw Probellum unveil two new signings, undefeated British super-welterweight champion Troy Williamson, and five-time amateur national champion Ben Rees. Please find the full list of results and quotes below.

LEWIS RITSON def. CHRISTIAN URUZQUIETA via RTD at 3:00 of R9

Lewis Ritson claimed a fantastic stoppage victory on his return to the ring as he came out on top against Christian Uruzquieta.

Ritson (22-2, 12 knockouts) shone from start to finish in the fight, with the big moment coming in round nine, where a fantastic flurry of punches sent Uruzquieta tumbling to the floor.

The Mexican managed to get up and see out the round, but with more punishment potentially looming, the corner decided to pull their man out, giving Ritson a great win inside the distance.

“I tried to add little things in the gym that I’ve been working on, and we were working well off the jab,” said Ritson. “I tried fighting when I didn’t need to, but we got the win and I want the big names now.

“I was fully focused and broke him down after four or so rounds, so I’m happy with the performance. I’ve added a few more strings to the bow, and with Probellum we’re going to be a big force up here for the next few years. I’m ready to rock and roll.”

THOMAS PATRICK WARD def. LEONARDO PADILLA via UD after 10 rounds (100-90, 100-90, 98-92)

Thomas Patrick Ward put in yet another vintage performance as he dominated proceedings against Leonardo Padilla.

Ward (31-0-1, 4 knockouts) was a level above Padilla, constantly beating his opponent to the key shots and doing damage with his quick attacks.

There was only one outcome when the final bell tolled, with Ward getting his hand raised and moving one step closer to another world title shot.

RICKY BURNS def. EMILIANO DOMINGUEZ RODRIGUEZ via UD after 10 rounds (100-91, 99-91, 98-92)

Ricky Burns marked his long-awaited return with a win as he overcame Emiliano Dominguez Rodriguez by unanimous decision.

it was the first time Burns (44-8-1, 16 knockouts) was back in action since October 2019, and the three-weight world champion received a tremendous reception from the fans in attendance.

It was a vintage performance from the Scotsman, once again showing the wide array of tools he has at his disposal, with the three judges eventually scoring it 100-91, 99-91 and 98-92 in his favour as he returned to winning ways.

MARK DICKINSON def. MICHAL GAZDIK 60-54 on PTS after 6 rounds

Mark Dickinson displayed his superb boxing ability as he gained six valuable rounds with a points win over Michal Gazdik.

Dickinson (2-0, 1 knockout) made an instant impact in the paid ranks with a 30 second knockout win during his debut in October, but he showed his other skills on this occasion, getting behind the jab and utilising all of his assets in the performance against Gazdik.

It was a one-sided effort from the talented prospect, with the referee scoring every round to Dickinson as he successfully triumphed.

“I didn’t go in there looking for the stoppage. I was in there with a light-heavyweight purposely to get the rounds,” said Dickinson. “I know I need those rounds to push me further in my career. It’s six rounds in the bag and then 2022 will be a big year.

“I had to mix up the power in the shots, and use my skill and my boxing brain. I know I’ve got one of the best brains in the sport, and I controlled every minute of every round of that fight.”

JOSEPH LAWS def. SEAMUS DEVLIN 60-55 on points after 6 rounds

The always-exciting Joseph Laws closed the show in his usual entertaining way as he beat Seamus Devlin.

There had already been a lot of drama outside of the ring for Laws (12-1, 5 knockouts), after his original opponent pulled out of the fight on weigh-in day, with Devlin stepping in on 24 hours’ notice.

Laws dictated proceedings, and the referee scored it 60-55 in favour of the Benwell Bomber as he made it two wins in a month.

“After the pandemic I had a bad year, and now I want to show people I’m a 12 round fighter. I’m not just a party trick,” said Laws. “I felt as the rounds went on I got better. Round six was probably my best round.

“Seamus is as tough as they come but I feel like I was working my way into the fight more. I want learning fights and I want to show I can do the rounds. I feel I’ve come on a lot and I need to give my coaches a big thank you.”

UNDERCARD RESULTS:

MARK MCKEOWN def. URIEL LOPEZ 59-56 on PTS after 6 rounds

Mark McKeown and Uriel Lopez were involved in a sensational back and forth battle, with McKeown coming out on top.

McKeown (5-0, 2 knockouts) started the fight extremely quickly, pushing the pace from the very first bell, but Lopez gave as good as he got, coming back with success of his own.

It was Scottish star McKeown who got the better of the exchanges, but it remained a toe to toe war throughout, with the fans in attendance on their feet at the end of the contest to applaud both men, as McKeown claimed the great victory.

“That’s the kind of fight I’ve been wanting. I loved every second of it,” said McKeown. At times I took too long to get behind my jab and I could have made it easier for myself, but I was landing good shots and so was he.

“My coach will tell you that I love a fight, but when it gets tough I bite down on my gumshield. I’m born like this, it’s something inside of me, you don’t need to look for it. I just dig in and get it done.”

ADAM COPE def. RUSTEM FATKHULLIN 40-35 on PTS after 4 rounds

Adam Cope continued his resurgence as he dropped Rustem Fatkhullin on his way to a comfortable points victory.

Cope (3-0) was competing for the second time in a month, having not boxed since 2017 before that, but he looked as fresh as ever, utilising his skills well and dropping Fatkhullin with a beautiful body shot in round two.

The Russian got to his feet and managed to see out the remainder of the fight, but there was only one winner, with Cope getting his hand raised and claiming the 40-35 points verdict.

“He knows how to survive. It was good to box a bit better, and I’ll always try and be better each fight,” said Cope. “I’ll look back at the fight and see what I’ve done, and then improve again.

“I was looking for the body shots in the fight, and I was trying to switch my feet and come through the middle. He was a tricky customer, and I know when I get to super-featherweight they won’t be able to take my shots.

“My support is always the loudest, it doesn’t matter where you put them. They didn’t disappoint, and thanks to everyone for coming so close to Christmas, it really means a lot to me.”

EWAN MACKENZIE def. QASIM HUSSAIN via RTD at 3:00 of R1

Ewan MacKenzie had a short night’s work as his fight with Qasim Hussain came to an early end after Hussain cited a shoulder injury at the end of round one.

It was all Mackenzie (3-0, 1 knockout) in the opening round, landing a number of good shots, but as Hussain went back into his corner at the end of the round, it soon became clear the action wouldn’t continue.

He told the referee he had suffered a shoulder injury, meaning that Mackenzie earned the stoppage win and extended his unbeaten record.

“It’s a bit frustrating. I was trying to break him down, but he says he’s got a shoulder injury,” said Mackenzie. “I was trying to work through a tight guard, but I need something back so I can set up the shot.

“I want a big year next year so I can stay active. I’ve been active over the last few months with some back to back camps, and I want it to pay off. I’ll be straight back in training, and it’s full steam ahead.”

ALEX FARRELL def. IVICA GOGOSEVIC via TKO at 1:04 of R2

Alex Farrell kicked off the show in style as he won an entertaining battle against experienced Ivica Gogosevic.

Farrell (6-0, 3 knockouts) was on the front foot from the offset, landing huge shot after huge shot, with Gogosevic eventually hitting the canvas in round two.

The Croatian got back to his feet, but another massive shot soon followed that knocked him down again, with the referee waving it off to earn Farrell the win.

“It’s more difficult when they’re a rough fighter, sometimes it’s easier to box a technical boxer than a rough guy, so I had to stay composed and see my openings,” said Farrell. “I take every fight as a learning curve and I want to learn in every fight.

“Everybody wants to be world champion, but for me I don’t care how long it will take or what it will take. I have to go through a lot to be a world champion. Thanks to all of the people in Greece, and all of the people in the UK for supporting me.”