The stellar knockout set the tone for the night, providing the crowd with a highly entertaining second round TKO victory in favour of Shadey Souied. Souied dedicated his performance to the late great, Keith Ellis Jr, a past trainer and figurehead in Australian boxing.
Alderton, in the other corner sought to defer Watson from his game plan- throwing punches from all angles to debilitate and weaken him. Early in the first round, Alderton landed a big right hand, stunning Watson and thus causing him to revert to trading blows with Alderton. In the last exchange of the fight, Alderton would come out the clear winner, landing a devastating single left-hook, ending the fight for Watson. Scenes following the conclusion of the fight were highly emotional to say the least, with Paul Watson's trainer Brian Butler announcing that following the KO, Watson would retire from professional boxing. The way in which both Watson and Butler accepted the loss, and the emotion running through not only the fighters and trainers, but also the crowd, ensured a standing ovation for both Paul Watson and Brian Butler, ending a successful career.
Whitehead clearly dominated the first two rounds, out-scoring the much slower Tillman with the jab. Whilst Tillman showed some signs of improvement in the second round, the fight was still dictated by the faster and technically smarter fighter in Justin Whitehead. Eventually, late into the third round whilst leaning out of an exchange, Tillman would fall victim to a straight right, sending him to the canvas with a loud enough thud to bring the house down. The result was a KO victory for Justin Whitehead in the 3rd round.
Yet again, Sacco was able to knock down Gathercole- this time for the count. A devastating lead right hand and a straight left knocked Gathercole down against the ropes, resulting in referee Chris Anderson stopping the fight. What was expected to be a great match-up between the two very capable fighters ended in an extremely one-sided bout, with Gathercole not being able to implement his game plan- and instead, being caught cold by the always dangerous Michael Sacco, ending as a TKO victory in the first round to Sacco.
Words By: Tai Tuiniua
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