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Liam Paro turns back Terry Tzouramanis, zeroes in on world title shot

Junior welterweight contender Liam ‘The Prodigy’ Paro 20-0 (13) became the first fighter to stop Terry Tzouramanis 23-5-3 (3) with a seventh-round knockout at Eatons Hill Hotel in the Brisbane suburb of Eatons Hill in Australia on Friday night.

Melburnian Tzouramanis, 35, never won a round against the classy southpaw and was down in the sixth from a body shot.

Brisbane’s Paro used his slick footwork and ring generalship to control the contest, increasing his pressure with each progressive round. An unintentional head clash in the mid-rounds drew blood from Tzouramanis’ left eye and Paro continued to attack the wound with razor-sharp jabs and accurate left crosses.

Referee Phil Austin cautioned both fighters for infringements – Paro for pulling down the head of his opponent and Tzouramanis for coming in low – but there were no point deductions.

At the end of the seventh, the Tzouramanis corner led by coach Ben Chua recognized their fighter had seen enough and withdrew him from the contest.

All three judges had Paro up 70-62 at the time of the stoppage.

“Mate it’s the best feeling in the world,” the 24-year-old Paro said after the fight. “It’s just good to get back in here. Two days shy of a year today, so it’s good to get the ball rolling again and back to chasing down a world title.

“It wasn’t my prettiest performance but hats off to Terry. With respect to him, he did what he had to do to make it awkward for me. I’m happy to get back in there and get another win under my belt and onto the next.

“We’ve sparred Terry before in previous camps and he’s absolutely tough as nails. We knew we would have to be ready for 10 and he pushed me all the way. We kept turning the screws and in the end, he just couldn’t keep up.”

Paro is ranked number two by the WBO and number three by the IBF, whose top two positions are open pending a final eliminator for the top spot. WBO and WBC champion Jose Carlos Ramirez 26-0 (17) is due to face IBF and WBA champion Josh Taylor 17-0 (13) in a four-belt unification bout in Las Vegas on May 22.

The ambitious youngster is plotting a shot at the winner before the end of 2021.

“Yeah definitely, that’s the plan and hopefully I finish the year off as a world champion,” he said. “But we will go back into the gym, there’s a bit we can work on now. We are always learning, so we will come out and in my next outing, I’m going to be fighting up in Townsville in North Queensland on June 26. I can announce that fight now after taking care of business here. I’ll be fighting alongside the big bro Mark Flanagan.”

In the main support bout Justin ‘Iceman’ Frost 12-1-1 (4) closed out his trilogy against Waylon ‘The Outlaw’ Law 12-9 (3) with a 10th round knockout win.

Law was down twice in the second round but worked his way back into the fight. Frost was leading 87-83 and 89-80 twice on the judges’ scorecards when the bout was stopped after a Frost right hand hurt Law and the follow-up barrage forced referee Phillip Holiday to step in and end the contest with just 25-seconds remaining on the clock.

The 28-year-old Law from Deception Bay in Queensland claimed the Australian junior welterweight title by split decision in their first contest six months ago. Frost, 30, of Brisbane got his revenge and reclaimed the belt in their rematch in November, claiming a majority decision win.

After 30 rounds of boxing in back-to-back-to-back fights, Frost said he was happy the series had concluded.

“Please let it be over,” the former soldier laughed after the fight. “I’m Waylon’s biggest fan now and I wish him nothing but success in the future.

“This was much harder than the first two. You can tell he put in the work in training camp and pushed me and made me dig deep. And like you said, I’ve got that soldier spirit and I’ve been fighting for war my whole life. And this was easy doing this, going back to war.”

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