No judges needed for the rematch tonight, as Denzel Bentley became the British middleweight champion, after the Mark Heffron's corner pulled him out after four rounds. Bentley put on a classy display, landing a big shot in the second round which seemed to close the eye of Heffron, which was ultimately the undoing of the Oldham man.
The fight started with a cagey opener, with both men trying to establish their jab in the opening round. However, it was Bentley who stepped his foot on the gas and had a big round in the second. The Battersea man landed a big right-hand flush on Heffron’s face, forcing his eye to begin to close over. Although Heffron didn’t look like he was in trouble, it was a big round early on for Bentley.
In the third, it was again Bentley putting on the pressure and looking the more dominant in the fight. The same happened in the fourth, with ‘2Sharp’ putting his foot on the gas and continued to break down Heffron. The eye of Heffron which was damaged in the second round from a big right hand, was getting progressively worse as the fight progressed, with Bentley continuing his assault.
As the fight grew on, Bentley grew in confidence and looked very comfortable in the ring. However, Heffron was still in there giving as good as he got, and wasn’t going down without a fight, that is for certain.
However, as the two fighters were seconds away from coming out for the fifth round, the Heffron corner signalled to the referee that their man was in no position to continue.
The eye of Heffron which had looked to have closed over after a big right hand from Bentley in the second round, looked like it had fully closed over by this point. A conscious decision by Team Heffron to pull their man out and put the health of their fighter first.
Bentley wins famous Lonsdale Belt after victory in rematch vs Mark Heffron (Photo: Boxing Social)
After a close first fight, Bentley will be overjoyed with his performance, on his way to winning the British middleweight title. His first belt as a professional boxer.
After the fight, the 25-year-old told BT Sport, “Get me another title. I don’t care what it is, I want another belt.”
In the co-main event of the evening, Tommy ‘TNT’ Fury put on an explosive display, blasting out Genadji Krajevskij in the second round. The Love Island star looked sharp on his return to the ring, after almost a year since his last contest. Fury will be looking to slowly make his way up the light-heavyweight rankings, with plenty to learn but a career to look forward to for the 21-year-old.
On the undercard, there were wins for Mikey Burke Jr and Henry Turner, who both extended their records to 4-0, whilst Caoimhin Agyarko also extended his unbeaten record to 8-0.
Burke kicked the night off with an impressive second round stoppage of Tommy Broadbent, hurting him the body before referee, Bob Williams, called a stop to the fight. Turner then followed up with an impressive performance against Des Newton, winning every round on his way to a comprehensive point’s victory.
Agyarko was far too good for a durable Robbie Chapman, eventually beating him via stoppage in the seventh round. ‘Black Thunder’ slowly broke Chapman down and went through the gears as the rounds progressed, before the referee intervened in the seventh. That was the fourth stoppage in a row for the Belfast man, who will have his sights set on some big domestic fights next year.