Upton Crowned English super-Lightweight Champion

Photo Credit Mark J Jones/Hatton Promotions
Photo Credit Mark J Jones/Hatton Promotions

Photo Credit Mark J Jones/Hatton Promotions

Anthony Upton became the second member of the Upton Clan to hold a national title following a stunning display against Luke Paddock in Cannock on Sunday afternoon.

The 24-year-old, who is trained by boxing legend Ricky Hatton, won the vacant English super-lightweight crown with a hellacious left cross 34 seconds into the ninth round.

It was a text book shot that rocked Paddock down to his boots and sent him crashing to the canvas.
The Bloxwich man did get back to his feet, but was unsteady and referee John Latham correctly waved it off.

The victory follows on from Anthony’s older brother Pauly being crowned Irish super-welterweight champion in April.

“It’s unbelievable. When I saw him shake his head and say he couldn’t continue I was so happy I dropped to my knees because no one sees how much effort boxers put in and how much It means,” Anthony, now 13-1 (5 KOs), said.

“I’ve spent nine weeks away from my family and I missed them dearly and now it’s paid off.

“I was trying to get him (Paddock) with that punch a lot. I kept overdoing it and missing.

“I knew he’d lean in with his shots, but I was too far away. Ricky told me not to stand too far apart from him because all I needed was an inch more and I did what Ricky told me, tagged Luke and he went down.”

He added: “Full respect to Luke Paddock. He’s a great fighter and good luck to him in the future.”

On the undercard, Anthony’s other punching sibling, Sonny, warmed up for his own English title opportunity by seeing off Atherton danger man William Warburton over eight rounds.

Sonny will now box Ben Hall for the vacant super-welterweight strap on a Frank Warren show in the Autumn.

Also in action from the Hatton stable were unbeaten prospects Reuben Arrowsmith and Sam Evans.

Evans stretched his record to 5-0 by outboxing Kevin McCauley over six rounds, while Arrowsmith used devastating uppercuts to drop and then stop Latvian southpaw Viktors Drizlionoks inside three rounds.

The card also saw Leon Gower and debutant Sahib Mann score third round stoppages over Craig Derbyshire and Daniel Mickleburgh respectively. Former world kickboxing champion Chad Sugden defeated Christian Hoskin Gomez 59-56 over six-threes.

Ricky Hatton Encourages Anthony Upton After Difficult Battle vs Joe Hughes

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RICKY HATTON has poured praise on Anthony Upton following his charge’s gallant effort against Joe Hughes in Walsall on Saturday night.

Stepping up to ten rounds for the first time, Upton showed incredible grit and determination against a much more experienced foe before ultimately losing out on the scorecards.

Upton, 23, started the fight well by using his reach advantage to pick shots from the outside and then following up with hooks in close.

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But Hughes proved to be a formidable opponent and connected well with solid left hands before knockdowns in the sixth and seventh rounds swung the contest firmly in his favour.

“Anthony can be very proud of his performance,” Hatton, who trains and promotes Upton, said. “This was always going to be a step up for him and if it wasn’t for the knockdowns, it would have been a very close fight on the scorecards.

“He showed incredible toughness. Some people thought he was more of a flashy fighter, but in this fight he proved he’s got the bravery and determination needed to get to the top.

“There’s fighters out there that would have crumbled after the second knockdown. Anto isn’t one of them. In the corner, he said to me “I’m fighter and I’ll fight until the end” and boy did he do that.

“It was only his 11th pro fight and he’s gone the full ten rounds for the English title fight and British title eliminator. In my 11th fight I fought for the Central Area title so he can be very proud of fact he’s done so well a level of above that.

“He probably learned more in this fight as he did in his past ten fights and I’m 100 per cent sure he’ll come back better than ever in 2016.”

Saturday night’s undercard saw victories for two of Hatton’s newest prospects as welterweight Reuben Arrowsmith scored his second professional win with a 40-37 victory over London’s Victor Edagha, and heavyweight debutant Nathan Gorman halted Jindrich Velecky in the third round.

Joe Hughes Sees His Meal Ticket to the Top in Anthony Upton

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ENGLISH super-lightweight champion Joe Hughes sees his fight with unbeaten Anthony Upton has a step towards the big time.
 
The 25-year-old from Malmesbury in Wiltshire was touted as a future star when he turned professional in October 2010.
 
But a shock setback against Joe Elfidh three years ago coupled with a TV broadcasting shake up meant he dipped under the radar and he’s been slowly rebuilding ever since.
 
His fight with Upton at Walsall Town Hall this Saturday night (December 5) doubles up as a British title eliminator and Hughes feels a victory will put him back among the 140lbs division’s biggest players.
 
“When I turned pro I was with Frank Maloney and I was boxing on big shows on Sky. After Frank lost his TV deal, I was sort of left in limbo,” he said.
 
“My trainer took over managing me and we had to rebuild from scratch. I fought a few journeymen and went from there.
 
“I’ve won a couple of titles since and now I’m trying to push on again to get to where I thought I should be by now. I wanted the British title within the first two or three years and that didn’t work out, but now I’m moving towards big fights again.
 
“This might not be a final eliminator, but is an eliminator and that means a step towards the British title. I’ve been a pro for five years and it’s time that I pushed on. Winning will put me a position to face Tyrone Nurse in the future and hopefully I can go on to even bigger fights from there.”
 
Despite having one eye on the Lonsdale belt, Hughes says he’s not overlooking the threat Upton poses. In fact, he admires his opponent for stepping up to the plate.
 
He said: “Upton’s a good kid. I’ve watched a few of his fights on YouTube and he looks skilful. He’s tall, fights at long range and looks elusive, so he’ll be a challenge.
 
“Obviously, he’s unbeaten and that adds another dimension to the fight. I’ve fought a few unbeaten boxers and they always help me to rise to the occasion.
 
“I was initially surprised to be offered the fight to be honest.  Lots of people these days are protected so it’s nice to see a kid who wants to just get in there and fight. I take my hat off to him.
 
“I’m always asking for hard fights because I want to move forwards. When I fight journeymen, it can be hard to get up for the fight, but facing someone like this gets me excited. I think it’s going to be a hell of a fight.”
 
Hughes v Upton tops a nine fight bill at Walsall Town Hall that also features two other Ricky Hatton-trained prospects.
 
Market Harborough super-welterweight Reuben Arrowsmith has his second professional fight, while hard-hitting Wednesbury welterweight Sam Evans is aiming to score another stoppage after blasting out Zaurs Sadihovs on his debut last month.
 
Also starring will be Birmingham middleweight Luke Heron, West Brom’s Tom Stokes, unbeaten Ludlow super-welterweight Craig Morris, featherweight prospect Jack Summers, Wolverhampton’s Des Bowater, and stylish Stoke super-lightweight Kieron McLaren.
 
Tickets are priced at £30 (general admission) and £60 (ringside). They can be purchased from Walsall Town Hall Box Office on 0845 111 2900 or directly from any boxer on the bill.