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Hennessy Sports Makes Emphatic Return as Dilmaghani & Fonseca Thrill the York Hall Crowd

by Eliot Stott

Hennessy Sports returned to terrestrial TV on a busy weekend for British Boxing on Saturday night.

Taking over York Hall for the night, an array of young British talent were given their chance to shine in front of a strong audience as two title fights taking place.

Main Events

Alex Dilmaghani vs Francisco Fonseca – Super Featherweight – Vacant IBO World Super Featherweight Title

Refreshingly, the main event of the evening held the main event status quite easily in reality on Saturday night.

In a fight that could have happened in a phone box, Dilmaghani & Fonseca secured a pace throughout the 12 round contest that many would find hard to replicate.

Both producing combinations over and over again, a packed York Hall and those who were watching at home enjoyed a fantastic contest.

After an accidental head clash in round 9, leaving Dilmaghani badly cut, those in the ring couldn’t have been blamed for either a slower pace towards the end of the fight or perhaps a lower rate of quality.

However, despite Dilmaghani looking worse for wear, the fight had a fitting end as both fighters continued to fire their best shots at eachother up until the final bell.

Despite a few voices at ringside believing that Fonseca, had done just enough, the fight was scored a majority draw with Howard Foster scoring the contest 115-114 to Fonseca whilst the other two judges scored it even at 114-114.

John Joe Nevin vs Freddy Fonseca – Vacant WBA International Super Featherweight Title

In what was a less entertaining fight with Fransico’s older brother Freddy taking on accomplished amateur John Joe Nevin who was fighting for his first professional title.

Using his superior boxing ability, Nevin boxed smart for the whole 10 rounds, rarely taking many punches from Fonseca who was on his way to the 5th loss of his career.

Accompanied by experienced trainer Jim McDonnell, Nevin took the victory with scorecards of 99-90 & 97-92 x 2.


Billy Underwood vs Danail Stoyanov – Middleweight

Fighting Bulgarian Danail Stoyanov who hadn’t been stopped before, Londoner Underwood who hadn’t stopped an opponent before, moved to a 3-0 via a shut-out points decision.

Stoyanov gave a good account of someone who has a losing record of 3-8, had his moments and arguably won the final round of the contest.

Underwood who is only 22, hadn’t been in the ring since February, looked like he enjoyed getting the rounds in whilst still in the early stages of his career.

Rhys Edwards vs Vladislavs Davidaitis – Super Featherweight

Young Welsh pro Rhys Edwards moved to 8-0 in explosive fashion, against journeyman Davidaitis, scoring a knockdown in the 3rd round, before forcing the Referee to stop the fight shortly after the Latvian got to his feet.

During the 3 rounds, Edwards looked in complete control, not wanting to waste time after going the full distance in his last 3 contests.

At the tender age of 19, Edwards has been on the winning side in all 8 of his professional fights in just under 12 months having made his debut on the 30th of November 2018.

Lewis Smith vs Naheem Chaudhry – Lightweight

In what could be described as a clash of styles, rangy Lewis Smith was taken the full distance by journeyman Naheem Chaudhry in his 4th professional contest.

Without perhaps being able to express himself fully during the fight, Smith managed to over come Chaudhry’s awkward style in a successful manner.

Samuel Antwi vs Fernando Valencia – Welterweight

Samuel ‘True Sensation’ Antwi enjoyed a slick performance after 7 months outside of the ring against journeyman Fernando Valencia.

After two really impressive performances in 2019 against the previously undefeated Jez Smith & a dominant performance against Siar Ozgul, Antwi has since vacated the Southern Area Title which has since taken by Shaquille Day.

Antwi who didn’t look like he got out of 2nd gear throughout the bout didn’t show a huge amount of ring rust and looked to enjoy the rounds after a short spell out of the ring.

Michael Hennessy Jnr – Middleweight

Son of promoter Mick, Michael Hennessy Jnr enjoyed a growing performance that wasn’t without one or two rocky moments.

Tagged early on in the fight, Hennessy Jnr battled through when he had too whilst Hennessy Sr watched on at ringside.

Despite a rocky 1st couple of rounds, Hennessy coasted once finding his rhythm, winning the 2nd half of the round with relative ease.

Lucian Atana vs Phil Williams - Heavyweight

6’9 Romanian heavyweight Lucian Atana made short work of Phil Williams inside one round.

After being knocked down by an aggressive Atana, Williams failed to recover enough for the satisfaction of the Referee.

Connor Marsden vs Craig Woodruff – Lightweight

The evening finished with a shock as Earlsfield ABC’s Connor Marsden’s undefeated run came to an end at the hands of Welshman Craig Woodruff.

Woodruff who now owns a record of 9-5 has gone up against Luke Campbell & Martin Joseph Ward in the past and was facing a novice in Marsden who was only having his 4th professional fight having turned pro less than 12 months ago.

Clearly rocked after touching the canvas for the first time, Marsden was struck again with a sweet left hook with the Referee not giving a second thought over whether or not to allow the South Londoner to continue.

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