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Boxing

Hyland made to work for lightweight title win

James Fryers is awarded his fight over Yordan Vasilev on the undercard of the Paul Hyland jnr fight. Picture Mark Marlow
Andy Watters

PAUL Hyland jnr wore down Bence Molnar to win the PBA Classic Lightweight Challenge Belt on the entertaining MHD Promotions bill in the Europa Hotel on Saturday night.

The teak-tough Hungarian took Hyland the distance, but in the end the Belfast lightweight took his record to 8-0 with a convincing points win to bring the curtain down on a bill that also included impressive wins for James Tennyson, James Fryers and Joe Fitzpatrick.

“It was very tough,” admitted Hyland.

“That’s the first time I’ve gone eight rounds in my career. He was tough, it was non-stop the whole way.

“He didn’t give me problems but he was some worker. He could take the big punches I was throwing. I was loading up but he was just walking through them. I knew it was going to be a long one.

“I realised that after the second round. I thought I was hurting him to the stomach and I could hear him gasping for breath, but he was still walking through them.”

Hyland returns to action on the ‘All on the line’ show at the Waterfront Hall on November 21 and hopes to push for bigger titles next year.

“I think that gets me in the top 10 now (of the British rankings) so hopefully soon enough I’ll be in British title contention,” he said.

“It was good to get the eight rounds in and see what it was like.”

Chief support on Saturday night was provided by James Tennyson who continued his upward trajectory with an emphatic second round stoppage win over George Gachechiladze.

“I hit him with at least three right hands and he just dropped,” said Tennyson (14-1), who will fight a British title eliminator against Paul Traynor before the end of February next year.

“He got back up and I was getting the left hook into the body lovely – he was wide open for it – so when he came back it was: right hand, left hook and that was it.”

Earlier, James Fryers showcased some slick boxing skills over six one-sided rounds against Yordan Vasilev who recovered from an early stoppage to last the course.

“I was glad to get the six rounds in,” said Fryers, now 10-0.

“That’s the furthest I’ve been in the professional ranks. I’ve been scheduled down for two eight-rounders but they haven’t gone the distance.

“I feel as if I can go a couple more rounds. It went at a high enough pace. A few times, I lost my footing and I lost my range at times. I think it was because of the height difference.”

Joe Fitzpatrick opened the show against game, but outclassed, Hungarian Peter Mellar. The talented ‘Dragon’ was in total control throughout and referee Hugh Russell jnr stopped it late in the fourth with Mellar taking a beating on the ropes.

“I’m happy enough,” he said afterwards.

“I hurt my left hand in the first round so I couldn’t really use the back hand and I just jabbed it out and in the last round I just went for it.”

With legendary promoter Barney Eastwood and former world champions Dave ‘Boy’ McAuley, Eamon Loughran and Paul Hodkinson at ringside, Fitzpatrick said he wanted to put on a show.

“I had to put on a good performance and I’m happy with it with one hand,” said the lightweight who will be back in action in Dublin on November 7.

He voiced his support for Immaculata ABC stablemate Alfredo Meli who is taking on Conrad Cummings for the Celtic middleweight title on November 21.

“Alfredo Meli is going to kill him, he’s going to do him big time,” he said.

“Fredo is a workhorse, you want to see him in the gym – he’s flat-out training every day, he’s unstoppable, he’s a machine. He’s going to be too much for Cummings I think.

“It doesn’t matter that Cummings is a full-time pro, Fredo is a better boxer in my eyes.”

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