By Iain DolanWatford’s Reece Bellotti (8st 13lbs 9oz) eased through the gears and recorded an impressive stoppage win over Merthyr’s Dai Davies (8st 13lbs 1oz) at York Hall on Friday night. After a nip and tuck opening round, Bellotti upped the pace in the 2nd and started to pick off Davies with crisp shots from both hands. In the 3rd Bellotti’s superiority in speed became even more pronounced as he stiffened Davies with a left uppercut. He followed up with a left jab, straight right combination that dropped Davies hard. Dai beat the count but the oft maligned Ian John Lewis correctly called a halt. Bellotti earns a crack at the British Featherweight title with this eye catching victory.Chief support was an entertaining scrap between Craig “Spider” Richards and Alan “Avalanche” Higgins over ten threes at super middleweight. The pair went looking for each other from the opening bell with Richards the busier of the two. Richards landed with combos to the delight of his vociferous supporters but whenever he looked to be taking control, Higgins came roaring back with two fisted barrages that pinned Richards on the ropes. Richards remained the busier until the middle rounds where the Higgins’ sporadic flurries became more frequent. The work rate slowed a bit in the 6th and 7th but then returned to the previous frenetic pace in the closing rounds as both attempted to stamp their authority on the closing stages. Richards had done the cleaner work even though Higgins had the more eye catching bursts of action and after 10 hard fought rounds, referee Jeff Hinds awarded the fight to Richards 97-95. This caused some consternation at ringside but I felt it was a fair enough decision. A lot of Higgins shots looked good but were caught on the gloves. By way of validation, I bumped into Boxing News Editor Matt Christie in one of Bethnal Green’s many salubrious beverage emporiums and he agreed with the referee’s verdict also.Earlier in the evening Brixton Cruiserweight prospect Isaac Chamberlain stopped the freakishly tall late sub Imantas Davidaitis in three rounds. Davidaitis was game for a couple of rounds until a brutal left hook to the body knocked the stuffing right out of him. Chamberlain stalked forward and Davidaitis was stopped on his feet a few seconds later. Chamberlain walked out to Dirty Old Town and then had a trumpeter accompanying him from the balcony for the whole fight. It added to the atmosphere but did not impresssome of the more mature members of the crowd.Patrick Hyland earned a 78-76 decision win over Peter Cope at lightweight and Felix Cash bested Jay Byrne 60-54 at middleweight. Danny Dignum stopped Iain Jackson in the 2nd round of his 2nd fight in the only real mismatch of the night.It was a very entertaining evening and it’s always good to see a bit of Sky/Matchroom big time glamour brought to a small hall show. My enjoyment was somewhat tempered by some over zealous security, unpredictable tidal variations in the lake on the floor of the gents and a bizarre shower of dust landing on my head throughout the evening. However, I bravely soldiered on despite all this and was rewarded by a great night’s action and excellent York Hall atmosphere (gents notwithstanding).
NXTGEN ringside review by Iain Dolan