UK Boxing: Edwards Defeats Usman In Stoke; DeGale & Saunders Open Workout

The Fenton Manor Sports Complex in Stoke-on-Trent, England, was the scene of Chris Edwards retaining his British and Commonwealth flyweight titles with a well deserved 12 round points verdict over opponent Usman Ahmed. Edwards, 13-13-3 (4), mounted a trademark hyper-busy attack, pressing Ahmed, 5-2-1 (0), for the majority of the bout. Ahmed, who lost his professional debut to Edwards in 2006, bravely tried to trade shots but didn’t have the power to keep the champion off. It was a clinic in attack and disruption from Edwards, who swept the cards 118-109, 118-109 and 117-111 to move one step closer to a European title challenge..

Super feather hopeful Gary Sykes, 12-0 (4), won a British title eliminator by defeating top rival prospect Anthony Crolla, 13-2 (5), over ten rounds by a score of 97-94.

Sykes unleashed the best performance of his career at the right time, outhustling the determined Crolla to become British champion Kevin Mitchell’s mandatory challenger.

Irish Olympic hero Darren Sutherland, 3-0 (3), put on another thrilling performance by finishing off journeyman Vepkhia Tchilaia, 9-10-5 (0), in the fourth.

Tchilaia had given Sutherland’s amateur rival James Degale a tough contest during a loss in February but the Georgian couldn’t withstand the brutal body assault launched by Sutherland, who has yet to be taken the distance since turning pro last December.

Former Mauritius amateur star Michael Frontin, 2-5-1 (0), finally realized his potential as a professional by upsetting ex-English beltholder Scott Haywood, 19-4 (4), at light welter.

Tricky stylist Frontin pulled off a stellar display of boxing but cemented the victory by flooring Haywood in the fifth with a picture-perfect right uppercut enroute to posting a 58-56 decision win.

Flyweight Ashley Sexton, 6-0 (3), faced busy veteran Delroy Spencer, 10-86-3 (1), after defeating the Wolverhampton warhorse in October, outpointing Spencer this time 60-54 after six rounds while another promising flyweight, Paul Edwards, 5-0 (1), won by the same margin over Francis Croes, 0-5 (0).

Featherweight Samir Mouneimne, 2-0-1 (0), handed Lee Selby, 4-1 (0), a first defeat, 39-37, after four tough rounds while Chris Riley, 1-1-1 (0), came off the canvas to narrowly rack up his first victory, 38-37, against difficult spoiler Youssef Al Hamidi, 5-19-1 (1), also at feather.

Chris Edwards photo copyright Jane Warburton/MMG and is free for use only with credit given to same.


Olympic Gold Medallist James DeGale and GB representative Billy Joe Saunders will perform a public work-out at the Galleria shopping centre in Hatfield on Thursday 4 June. DeGale and Saunders are the bright young stars of British boxing and are both undefeated in two fights.

Both appear next on the big O2 Arena show, along with Olympian team mate Frankie Gavin, on the undercard of Amir Khan’s WBA World Light Welterweight title challenge against Andreas Kotelnik.

All media are invited to attend and there are interview and photo-opportunities available.

Members of public are invited to attend and it is free of charge.

Thursday 4 June
Comet Way
Hatfield, AL10 0XR
Time: 12noon for a 12.30pm start

For further information please contact Richard Maynard on 01992 505 550.