Cantwell makes successful debut - Camden Centre undercard report

A busy Mickey Helliet is chucking regular work Camden Council's way, with Hellraiser Promotions putting on an increasing number of cards at the Council-owned venue since the building housed its first professional contests back in February last year.

Tonight's six bout offering, dubbed ‘Hands of Stone – Nerves of Steel’ was topped by an interesting trade matchup which saw London welterweight prospect Ahmet Patterson outpoint Nottingham's Dale Miles over ten rounds for the British Masters Welterweight belt (click here for full report).

Plenty of Sammy Cantwell fans showed up to see the son of popular former British flyweight champion Mickey make his professional debut against Frenchman Norredine Dahou (3-10-1). 

Due in part to a shortage of opponents at light flyweight, Cantwell, 25, only had four amateur contests but is hoping to be busier as a pro and says he prefers the slower pace and longer rounds.

But Cantwell (8st 3lbs) set a fast tempo, dipping in and out with ones and two's and not allowing Dahou (7st 12lbs) too many opportunities in an energetic opening round. He went on to dominate the scoring shots throughout the second. A high work rate brought cheers of encouragement from his fans.

Cantwell delivered some tidy work, including a crisp uppercut and left hooks to the body, which kept Dahou away, but the Frenchman resisted and didn't stop coming forwards in the closer. Referee Ian John Lewis scored 40-37 for Cantwell, whose progress will no doubt be watched with interest. Father Mickey was in his corner.

The evening's action was kicked off a little later than scheduled by Cheshunt chappie Charlie Hoy (6-0) against Bulgarian Valentin Marinov (4-3). An industrious start from Hoy (8st 5lbs) put Marinov (8st 9lbs) down with a right hand just 30 seconds in.

From then on, the Bulgarian skidded around the ring like Bambi on Ice trying to avoid Hoy's attacks, and slipped over twice. Shouts from ringside to 'get some tape on the boy's boots' didn’t seem to be heard by his corner during the break, after another knockdown was counted by referee Marcus McDonnell.

Good shots from Hoy sent Marinov down again after twenty seconds, and after more sliding around, McDonnell waved it off at 56 seconds in. For me, both his corner, and the BBBoC officials, should have made attempts to address the situation with Marinov's boots during the break.  Hoy is explosive, but won't have learned anything by blasting out an opponent that couldn't stand up without being hit, let alone when under attack.

Carshalton's Craig Whyatt (5-0) wasn't in the mood to hang about either. Entering the ring to Harry J All Stars 'Liquidator', the lighweight ferociously blasted Stoke's Marvin Campbell (1-3) with hurtful hooks to the body, one of which put him down just before the bell in the first.

Whyatt (9st 13lbs 8oz) was bit smaller than Campbell (10st 2lbs), but had bags more tenacity and sent Campbell down again near the start of the second with a swift right to the head. The Stoke fighter rose gamely, but the writing was on the wall for Marvellous Marvin as Whyatt's quick hands sent him down again. This time, referee Ian John Lewis rightly waved it off at 2.06.

Watford's JJ Ojuederie (14-8-1) made his return to the ring after a near two and a half year absence. Back then, Ojuederie (14st 1lbs 4oz) campaigned mainly at light heavyweight, and tonight he was well within the cruiserweight limit. His four three's against a much bigger Bulgarian Kristian Kirilov (15st 12lbs) was reduced to four twos - a professional distance I'm not keen on, but understandable seeing as Ojuederie should have really been in with a cruiser.

The weight difference was evident when Kirilov came forward. He absorbed a couple of right hands over the top from Ojuederie, which, if launched by a fully-fledged heavyweight, would have knocked him down. This gave him confidence, and he let go with a hurtful flurry before the bell, which made the round even.

Ojuederie kept away from Kirilov in the second, content to avoid his forward march after being clipped with a right hand. The Bulgarian was blowing a little, but continued to look dangerous in the third.  Ojuederie scored when he jabbed from the back foot, and when stepping in very briefly to deliver hooks to the body, which the Bulgarian laughed at.

Ojuederie had his most aggressive round in the closer, and he unloaded regularly, causing a tiring Kirilov to cover up, but the Bulgarian heavy did a little dance to signify he wasn't hurt. Marcus McDonnell scored 40-37 for Ojuederie. BoxRec News had it closer at 39-38.

Surrey's Joe McDonald (2-0-1) was a bit gun shy in the first couple of rounds against journeyman Didier Blanche (0-6), but the Newcastle based Congolese, yet to win a fight, was a difficult target to pin down. McDonald had some success with his shots when he threw in twos and threes.

Blanche (12st 3lbs) was twice warned for holding in a scrappy third, but gradually McDonald (11st 13lbs 8oz) warmed into it and got to him, putting together some good body shots and upping the tempo in the closing round to send Blanche down - ruled a slip by Referee Marcus McDonnell, who scored 40-37 for McDonald.
Camden Council shouldn’t have to wait too long for the next boxing instalment. Casual boxing fans should get themselves down there.


Simon Barclay speaks to BoxRec News from Klitschko's Champ Camp

Heavyweight world champion Wladimir Klitschko is preparing to face Australian Alex Leapai on 26th April and as usual he has chosen the familiar surroundings of the Austrian Alps. Just hours after winning his professional debut at the Copper Box in London, 24-year old Corby cruiserweight Simon Barclay was on a plane to join up with him in what the Ukrainian calls 'Champ Camp'.

Fight Reports

Brentwood’s ‘Smokin’ Joe Mullender (6-1) got back on track with a close points win over Peckham’s Diego Burton (4-4-1) over ten rounds at the York Hall on Saturday. It was a belter of a fight on a slightly smaller than usual Goodwin bill, partly due to 'Flash' Ashley Sexton not making weight again (more on this later) and 'Big Dog' AJ Carter’s opponent, who reportedly turned up with Evo-Stick holding his mooey in place.