night-of-championsLiam Conroy headlined in a scheduled 10 rounder for the WBC Lightheavyweight Silver Youth Title. Roared on by his vocal support, the Barrow boxer closed the show in sensational fashion. He boxed well in the early going and it was in the fifth that the contest came to life, and ended dramatically. Conroy floored his opponent, Hungarian Ferenc Albert. Both men are 23 years old, both box in the 175lb division. That is where the similarities ended unfortunately for the underdog. Conroy took his third stoppage victory from 10 career wins so far. In claiming the previously vacant green belt, Conroy also completed a hat-trick on the night for Preston based trainer Johnney Roye.

Bantamweight, Michael “Trouble Maker” Ramabeletsa, retained his title with a stunning third round stoppage of Kamil Jaworek. The South African born MGM Manchester fighter inflicted a first early loss on his opponent after scoring a knockdown in each of the opening three rounds. By the time the final knockdown was scored the ref had seen enough and surely saved Jaworek from further punishment. At 34, Ramabeletsa is enjoying a renaissance of late and is looking towards domestic honours as he builds career momentum.

Atherton’s Ashley Peyton completed the set for Roye but it didn’t have it all his own way. Peyton (9-0) was made to work for every minute of the eight rounder against Ibrar Riyaz. While he didn’t emulate his team mates with spectacular stoppages, he will no doubt have learned the most of the trio and came through a tough test to secure victory.

These smaller, local shows often showcase up and coming talents and Saturday at the Guild Hall was no different. Reece Macmillan opened the show with a solid 39-37 win against the durable Alec Bazza. He landed some stinging bodyshots, especially with the right hand but Bazza was never in serious danger. We unofficially scored the fight the same as the ref, giving Bazza the final session after he seemed to throw caution to the wind knowing he was well down on the cards.

IBF Featherweight World champion Lee Selby was in attendance to show his support for fellow Barry boxer Jason Sillett. The undefeated lightweight boxed his way to a comprehensive points win over Ben Mulligan to progress to 4-0 as a pro. At only 19 years old, Sillett is undoubtedly a talent and one to watch for the future.

Ryan Moorhead made a successful return to the ring in his first contest in just under a year. Simas Volosinas was a late replacement and didn’t disgrace himself at all. Moorhead understandably looked a little rusty and shipped a couple of shots in the opening stanza. He wasn’t fazed however and soon settled into the contest. He boxed very well throughout to keep his distance with the jab and win every one of the four scheduled rounds.

The very durable Lithuanian, Remigijus Ziausys, halted the KO run of Jordan “Troublesome” Thompson but there is no shame in that. Ziausys has gone the distance against the likes of Warren Baister, Stephen Simmons and Simon Vallily, so the Manchester man is in decent company and will take a great deal from the contest. Without resorting to clichés, Thompson will learn more from these four rounds than blowing out opponents within minutes. The result was never in doubt as Ziausys adopted his usual defensive tactics. When he did go on the offensive, Thompson took his flurry to the body and engaged in some brief showboating in response.

Talented amateur Brandon Daord made a successful transition to the paid ranks with a shutout win over Sergey Tasimov. The Liverpool fighter looked very sharp and stylish in winning his debut and is highly touted to make a big impression in the lower weight classes.

Jimmy Kelly continued his comeback from an unsuccessful world title tilt with a dominant points win over Deividas Sajauka. Kelly was another one who seemed to target the body and produced some very tidy work. This was his second bout since the Liam Smith loss and he looks ready to make another step up based on his performance this weekend.

Review: MGM Manchester – Night of the Champions