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BOXING: Victorious Young back in business
SWINDON boxer Kelvin Young remains keen to get Matthew Barney in the ring after comfortably overcoming Latvian Ruslans Pojonisevs at the Oasis on Saturday night.
The former Penhill amateur was headlining the KM Promotions show in his hometown, but faced a late change of opponent after Barney pulled out of their planned Southern Area super middleweight title fight with a virus.
Young’s belt wasn’t on the line against Pojonisevs, but the 25-year-old was out to impress and kept the Latvian at bay with his jab to make his height and reach advantage count and earn a 59-56 victory, despite having only three days to prepare for the bout.
Pojonisevs has a reputation as a knockout specialist and has recently gone the distance with Nick Blackwell and Chris Eubank Junior, but despite attempting a number of big shots he enjoyed little success as the Swindon boxer’s defence held firm.
Young was pleased with the way he coped despite his limited preparation, and is now focused on getting the fight with the experienced former British champion Barney on again.
“It would be nice to get Matthew Barney in the ring, that is the number one goal because he is a former British champion who has fought for European and Commonwealth titles, so it would be great to get him in there again,” he said.
“It’s not up to me when the fight is, that’s up to Keith (Mayo, promoter) but I will just get back in the gym and get training.
“I don’t see why he won’t want to fight me, he has been in with Carl Froch and is a former British champion. He won’t be scared of me, but I know it will be a good fight.
“I genuinely believe he was ill, so we will just see what happens and try and get it on another time.”
Young had always planned to use his jab as his main method of attack against Barney, and was pleased with the way he managed to change his game plan against Latvian Pojonisevs.
“It was all about getting myself in there and getting behind the jab, because at the end of the day I knew Pojonisevs had been in there with a lot of good fighters,” he said.
“He has got 10 knockouts out of 13 wins I think, so I always knew he was going to be dangerous and I wasn’t going to stand there and try and trade it with him.
“I only had three days notice for this fight and was working on totally different tactics to get on the front foot and fight like I was going to with Barney, and it would have been totally different.
“I was planning to get behind the jab even with Barney, but against him I would have had to have looked for him a lot more, which I didn’t have to do against this guy.
“He never landed any clean shots on me, it was always on the gloves, and I caught him with a few body shots which he claimed were low, but they weren’t.”
There was mixed success for the other two Swindon fighters on the card at the Oasis as Danny O’Reilly dominated Arron Fox to win 36-30, but Joe Beeden went down to a 59-56 defeat to the experienced Sid Rasak.
O’Reilly was always on top against the man from Westbury after landing some big shots in the final minute of the opening round, before sending his opponent to his knees in the second with a punch to the back of the head. Fox responded well in the third, but the decision was never in doubt as the final bell sounded.
Beeden was by far the busier boxer against Birmingham-based Rasak, but his lack of power saw him fail to make an impact as he tired towards the end. Rasak was content to sit back and pick Beeden off, and eventually took the contest 59-56.
Bicester’s Daza Usher, managed by Swindon promoter Mayo, beat Kevin McCauley in an even contest, while rising star Tamuka Mucha out-lasted Lancashire’s William Warburton to take the win despite not showing his best form.
Former British and Commonwealth light-heavyweight champion Dean Francis took to the ring to face Hungarian Atills Tibor Nagy in the penultimate fight of the night, and never got out of second gear has he eased to success on what was only his second fight since returning from a three-year lay-off.