by Iain Dolan
Another action packed night at York Hall with crowd pleasing fights being just the required winter warmer on a day of miserable weather in East London. Danny Dignum recorded an impressive 5th round stoppage of Conrad Cummings with a big left hand after some good body work earlier. Liam Walsh bested Maxi Hughes on points to help get his career back on track after a period of stagnation. Chantelle Cameron moved a step closer to a world title shot with a hard fought points victory of the very tough Anahi Ester Sanchez. Cameron won wide on the cards but was made to work every step of the way. She was cheered on by 11 year old nephew Archie who was making his first trip to York Hall and thoroughly enjoyed his night. Archie attends Stony Dean school specialising in speech and language in Amersham and they’ll be auctioning some of Chantelle’s signed gloves as a fund raiser. Hopefully not the ones she wore on Saturday night as they’ll be pretty used up!
Someone else who enjoyed their first trip to the Home of Boxing was Claressa “T-Rex” Shields, double Olympic gold medalist and undisputed Middleweight champion. She was good enough to record a shout out to my daughter when I bumped into her (I say “bumped into” it was more a case of “relentlessly stalked” and employed Lomachenko-esqe footwork to leave the security bloke floundering on the other side of a large post as I made my move. She said she liked York Hall and was impressed with Chantelle Cameron but didn’t seem keen to elaborate, probably because she didn’t know who the hell I was or where her answers would be published.
What was a bit unusual for York Hall was how many people seemed to have come to just see one or two fights and the place was half empty for some of the bigger bouts. The event was sold out but there were always a few empty seats. Different empty seats depending on who was in the ring. Still, the Farmy Army can always make enough noise to make you think the place is full and Danny Dignum and Conrad Cummings’ supporters also made a fair bit of noise so the empty seats did not negatively impact the atmosphere.
Also worthy of note is the York Hall bar now sells Doom Bar which is welcome to those of us getting a bit too old to drink lager in public. Before the show I decided to nip into the Dundee Arms for a preprandial and although there have been major attempts to gentrify this place over recent years, the boxing crowd still render it a proper pub. The Beavertown Neck Oil went down well albeit after a slightly short pour was rectified. I don’t like being “that guy” but at £5.90 a pop you can fill that pint glass properly thank you, I don’t care if I do get the option of drinking it on a chaise longue. Overall, the Dundee Arms is still recommended for a pre fight pint as it remains the traditional start of the York Hall experience and long may that continue.