Welsh lightweight Gavin Gwynne 13-2 (3) delivered a sterling performance to stop highly favored Irish southpaw Sean ‘The Public Nuisance’ McComb 11-1 (5) in the seventh round to claim the vacant Commonwealth title at Bolton Whites Hotel in Bolton, England on Friday night.
The 30-year-old Gwynne was in superb condition and kept the pressure on McComb for every minute of every round, attacking the body and pushing back the 28-year-old from Belfast for much of the fight.
A clash of heads in the first round opened up scar tissue above McComb’s right eye while Gwynne suffered a cut to the back of the head from an errant elbow that bled throughout the fight.
As the rounds progressed McComb struggle to meet the pace set by Gwynne and he eventually wilted under the pressure, turning his back in the seventh round to surrender the fight at the 2:09 mark.
“I’m speechless,” Gwynne said. “I put so much into this camp, I was super fit, no one was going to beat me. I could have been in with any world-class fighter and I wouldn’t have stopped. And that was only first gear. Tony [Borg, his trainer] told me ‘don’t go up a gear, wait until he starts tiring’. But I didn’t have to.
“I knew I couldn’t stay on the backfoot with him. He was a world-class amateur, I couldn’t outbox him, I had to take it to him and take him out of his stride, then cut him up. I cut him in the first and I knew that would play on him, then I cut him in the second. Then I started going to work and started landing big shots.
“Fair play to him, he stayed on his feet. I caught him with a big right on top of the head and he turned. I can’t find the words for how much this means to me.”
Gwynne had previously lost to fellow Welshman Joe Cordina on points in 2019 and was dropped by a right hand from James Tennyson before being stopped in the sixth in his last fight for the British lightweight title last August.
Those experiences at the higher level gave him confidence against McComb.
“When I was running the roads I was thinking about those fights and what I could have done differently,” Gwynne said.
“The Cordina fight I got out skilled and Tennyson is a world-level fighter. They were good learning fights and I knew Sean hadn’t been stepped up, so I knew this would be tough for him. I thought if I put it on him, he would crumble.”
In the main support bout welterweight Samuel Antwi 13-1 (6) stopped Darren Tetley 20-2 (9) in the sixth round to claim the vacant English title.
Tetley was down in the opening round and always seemed a step behind Antwi, who landed some thudding body shots that precipitated the end of the fight at 2:57 of the sixth.
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