Last night we saw Josh Warrington fight Amagasa in Leeds and Stephen Smith travel to the USA to fight IBF world champion Pedraza. It was a mixed night for British boxing and you can find out why what was below but first, if you don’t know the results and want to read my preview of the night’s action you can find that here.
JOSH WARRINGTON V HISASHI AMAGASA
Leeds fan favourite Josh Warrington beat dangerous Hisashi Amagasa by unanimous decision in what was an excellent fight decided over the 12 rounds.
After a good quality undercard that saw Martin J Ward put himself in a mandatory position for the British super-featherweight title and Stuart Hall prove that he is more than worthy of a shot at the IBF bantamweight title, Josh Warrington put on a fantastic display to beat the man from Japan who twice knocked down Rigo in 2014. Warrington performed much like the man who fought before him, Stuart Hall, starting the fight quick and ending the fight quick in order to pick up a convincing points victory. Amagasa looked like a tricky opponent for the Yorkshireman as he was much taller than Warrington and had a decent reach advantage but this proved to not be a problem for the compact Warrington, who has now opened up the doors for a potential fight with rival Lee Selby. The man born in Leeds spoke to Sky Sports after the fight and had this to say about fighting Selby:
“It’s a fight [against Selby] the Leeds people want. I just think that when that comes around, I’ve got what it takes to beat him. I know we all have bad nights but when he’s boxed, he hasn’t looked elite level.” – Josh Warrington
The scoring of the fight was laughable and put a bit of a downer on the fight as it was scored 117-111, 118-111 and 120-107. The judges clearly saw a completely different fight to everyone else as most people had Warrington edging the fight comfortably, but not by such a wide margin. It was a bit of a discredit to Amagasa, who was fighting out of his native Japan for the first time, as he battled hard against Josh and certainly won more rounds than what he was given. Despite this, the night of fighting on Sky Sports was excellent, especially so considering it wasn’t on box office and I would recommend watching it back if you can.
STEPHEN SMITH V JOSE PEDRAZA
Unfortunately becoming Britain’s 13th current world champion was just out of reach for Stephen Smith as he lost by unanimous decision to tricky Puerto Rican Jose Pedraza out in the states.
Stephen’s 3 brothers – Callum, Paul and Liam all went out to America to support their brother in his attempt to become Britain’s 13th world champion but it just wasn’t to be. Smith started the fight well and even had his man on the floor in the 4th round, but it was from a push rather than a punch unfortunately. Smith continued to box smart though and found some good combinations which opened up Pedraza, however Smith just couldn’t capitalise. American pundit’s had the scores level going into the 8th round and it wasn’t until the 9th when a decisive moment happened as Smith was knocked down by Pedraza but he managed to get up and make it to the end of the fight. Smith fought well and it was an unlucky loss for the Brit despite being knocked down late on, he just couldn’t manage to have a good end to the fight like Warrington and Hall did back over here in the UK.
The judges scored the fight 117-110, 116-111 and 116-111 which was a little bit wider than some people thought but the decisive knock down in the 9th round probably had a big impact on this unfortunately for Smith. The Brit can come back with his head held high though and shouldn’t give up on his dream to win a world title. He has shown he can definitely mix it with world champions and I think he will get another shot somewhere down the line.
By some minor miracle I have managed to get BOTH my predictions right for the 2 main British fights this weekend (if you can count “close points decision” for Pedraza). If anyone want’s to have a go at predicting the results and maybe having a mini predictions league let me know.