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Charlie Edwards retains after being 'knocked out' by Julio Martinez, Cordina, Buatsi win

Charlie Edwards is ruled a KO loser then gets his WBC belt back on a No Contest in bizarre 10 minutes, while Joshua Buatsi and Joe Cordina are both victorious at the O2

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Charlie Edwards
Charlie Edwards

WBC flyweight champion Charlie Edwards retained the championship for the second time, in bizarre circumstances against mandatory challenger Julio Martinez of Mexico. The latter had knocked out Andrew Selby to secure this chance and, in his first pro contest outside Mexico, had Edwards in serious trouble in the third round at the O2, hurting him to head and body to knock him down. An overzealous Martinez then whacked Edwards very late with a potent shot to the ribs while he was prone, but the referee seemed to ignore this and counted the champion out. Martinez was announced as the winner but on-site WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman, initially serving as an interpreter for the apparent new title-holder, revealed that the Board of Control had agreed to defer to the WBC’s use of instant replay to address controversy and that he had ruled a No Contest and ordered a direct rematch. Edwards, who had suggested he might move up in weight before the news, now has a decision to make.

 

Former European amateur champion and GB Olympian Joe Cordina of Cardiff, Wales, made the first defence of his British lightweight title (second of his Commonwealth strap) with a over tall, game compatriot Gavin Gwynne. The challenger was second best on ability in this battle of unbeatens but kept applying intelligent pressure, and Cordina, while showing fast fists and slick head movement, did not possess the power to wipe out or dissuade the Treharris man, who scored well to the body. Cordina lost a point in round seven, despite no previous warnings, for a low blow and was seemingly happy to trade with Gwynne, as the quicker and more agile boxer. Gwynne had a point deducted in the closing stages of the ninth for hitting to the back of the head, a shame as it had been one of his best rounds up to that point. Both looked fit and strong at the end of this 12-rounder. Scores of 116-110 (twice) and 116-111 , all for Cordina, seemed fair.

 

Piping hot light-heavyweight prospect Joshua Buatsi is now 12-0 (10) after becoming the first man to KO Canadian trialhorse Ryan Ford. The Ghana-born GB Olympic bronze medallist showed his typical poise, punch variety and power against an awkward, crafty opponent who had clearly mixed in good company and managed to land a few clean shots of his own. Buatsi remained composed and finished the job in round seven, a sharp left hook precipitating the end. Buatsi unloaded with a ruthless barrage but the final left downstairs looked to have strayed low against a tough adversary who had only been afforded three weeks’ notice.

 

Every time James Tennyson moves to a new weight division, he seems to find renewed impetus. Lightweight has proved no different for the Belfastman and he demolished talented Atif Shafiq here, scoring a second-round stoppage to secure the vacant WBA International belt. With Rotherham‘s Shafiq backed to the ropes, heavy-handed Tennyson unloaded, with a massive left hook causing the damage, a right and two more hooks quickly following.

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