Webb and Arthur win in style. Very different style

By Ezio Prapotnich: British Light Middleweight champion Sam Webb, 17(5)-1(1)-0, retained his crown winning his first defence in spectacular fashion by knocking out Martin Concepcion, 17(10)-8(5)-0, at 2:20 of the 11th round. It was a solid display of discipline, technique, and tactics by Webb, who stuck to his game plan all throughout the fight, remaining focused in spite of Concepcion constant pressure, and must have been way ahead on points before closing the show.

From the opening bell, Sam looked confident and established himself as the ring general, even though conceding the centre of the ring and the role of aggressor to Martin. Continuously circling around, the champion was picking his shots and beating the opponent to the punch with jabs, right hands, 1-2s, being effective either attacking or countering, and slipping most punches with very good head movement. Towards the fifth, Concepcion insistence in pressing the fight seemed to pay off a little, as he landed a few solid straight shots, but, even when caught clean, Sam was quick enough to capitalize on the openings in Martinís guard and come back with his own. The champion got drawn into a war in the 8th but returned every shot and regrouped quickly, resuming the circular motion. It was more of the same in the next two rounds. In the fateful 11th, Concepcion actually wobbled Webb landing a powerful 1-2 combination but, again, Sam did not lose his head and delivered a right hand perfectly on target to close the show. Upon publication of the new EBU rankings, Sam Webb will most likely go on to challenge European champion Konecny, although a show down with mandatory British challenger Prince Arron would be mouth watering for the fans.

In the main supporting bout, Jamie Arthur, 18(4)-4(2)-0, in spite of 2 points deductions and a cut above the left eye, surprisingly lifted the vacant Commonwealth Super Bantam weight belt against southpaw Kris Hughes, 12(1)-1-0, in a scrappy and untidy affair. Arthur started as the aggressor but, in spite of the gap in experience, Hughes was not afraid to engage actually landing 1-2s to the head and a good body shot. Kris scored to the head again in the second but Jamie landed effectively on the body, may be too effectively as he delivered a low blow that forced the referee to halt the action and warn him. The first two rounds more or less gave the blueprint of the whole fight: Arthur was the aggressor, constantly stalking his opponent, and, in spite of getting nailed quite often with straight punches to the head, landed what the judges must have considered the better blows to Hughes midsection. In an uneventful bout, the only highlights were actually the fouls. After taking a warning in the second and being cut in the third, Jamie got a point deducted for low blows in the fifth and in the eleventh, and another warning after a nasty clash of heads in the 8th. It was a tough fight to score and you would have expected the loss of 2 points to swing the result in Kris favour, but instead it was Arthur to get a unanimous decision with a score of 114-112 on 2 cards and 114-113 on the third one so winning his first title in a professional career that saw him gradually dropping down in weight after winning the Gold Medal as a Lightweight at 2002 Commonwealth games.

It is worth mentioning heavyweight prospect David Price clinical dismantling of Roman Sukhaterin. Making the best of the huge height difference in his favour, Price was comfortable piling up points fighting from the outside, snapping his jab and even hooks never being in range for a counter because of his reach. In the beginning, he was economical in his choice of weapons, using single shots or two punches quick combinations, gradually stepping up the pace till the referee called it a day at 2:44 of the 7th round.

Other results of the night:

Tony Hill bt Kevin Concepcion tko 2:48 of rd 1. 6x3 Middleweight.
Tom Dallas bt Paul Morris tko 2:55 of rd 3. 6x3 Heavyweight.
Joe Hughes bt Jason Carr 60-54. 6x3 Light Welterweight.
Damien Campbell DR Colin Kenna. 4x3 Heavyweight.

Article posted on 17.10.2010

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