by James Slater: 29 year old Willie Limond made a successful return to the ring last night in Glasgow. Scoring a hard-fought 12 round points win over fellow Scot Martin Watson in a bout that contested the vacant IBO Inter-Continental lightweight belt, Limond picked up his first win since almost upsetting the highly touted Amir Khan last July. Last night’s scores were 119-111,119-109 and 118-110 – all for Limond..
The 26 year old Watson certainly came to fight, however. Pushing Limond all the way for 12 good action rounds that the fans in attendance enjoyed immensely, Watson earned Limond’s respect. Limond, who sensationally decked golden boy Khan last summer, before being forced to retire after eight rounds with a damaged jaw, is as hungry as ever.
“Martin pushed me all the way, as I knew he would,” said Limond. “I have gone up the ratings with this win and after a first defence maybe I will go for a shot at the full [IBO] world title. There is a lot more to come from me and my aim is to get the full IBO title before the end of the year,” the Scot remarked.
Last night’s display certainly gave no indication that the tough loss to Khan hurt Limond physically in any way. He rocked Watson early on and then refused to take a backward step – as did his opponent. The action was engrossing and Limond later said how he was happy to have got the full 12 rounds under his belt once again.
Limond, despite what the knockdown of Khan may suggest, is no big puncher. With just eight stoppages in his 29 victories, the 29 year old is more of a good technician than a big banger. Still, Limond and his supporters did maintain that the knockdown Khan suffered against him back in July kept the hotly tipped prospect on the floor for more than the ten seconds needed to register a KO. Limond argued that Khan was actually down for 13 seconds in the 6th round and therefore should have been counted out. It was mildly controversial, but Limond soon realised he would have to move on – as a rematch with Khan was very unlikely.
Last night, with his action packed win over Watson, Limond did just that. With his win Limond improved to 29-2(8). Watson fell to 14-5-1(6).