Frampton Seals Celtic Title in Belfast

By Brendan Galbraith: Carl ‘The Jackal’ Frampton is the new Celtic super-bantamweight champion following a classy second-round stoppage of Aberdeen’s Gavin Reid. Frampton, headlining his second show at the Ulster Hall under the Barry McGuigan Promotional banner, once again received rapturous support from the appreciative Belfast crowd.

From the opening round, Frampton looked composed and sharp, and comfortably evaded early pressure from his rangy opponent. However, towards the close of the opener, Frampton introduced his destructive clubbing right hand and rocked his opponent.
At 2.29 of the second round, referee Steve Gray called a halt to proceedings. Prior to that Frampton stepped into range landing a pinpoint looping right hand to Reid’s head. Reid, trapped on the ropes, attempted to cover up, but Frampton launched a blistering flurry to end proceedings. There were similarities with manner in which Frampton finished his last victim, Voronin Yuriy, as he once again showed a succession of beautiful quick-handed straight rights that were delivered with power and pin point accuracy.

Frampton was clearly delighted with his early stoppage win over an opponent that had taken other top prospects such as Stephen Smith and Scott Quigg, eight and nine rounds, respectively.

Manager and promoter, Barry McGuigan will have plenty to think about as he plots Frampton’s trajectory for 2011. There are some potential great domestic match-ups with the likes of Willie Casey, Paul Hyland, Scott Quigg as well as seasoned operator Rendall Monroe and Jason Booth.

As pundit Steve Bunce commented on Setanta Ireland’s coverage, perhaps Monroe and Booth are too seasoned for Frampton at this stage, but he could be in line to mix it with any other domestic competitor. Realistically, a fight with either Paul Hyland or Daniel Kodjo Sassou (who looked like a tough and durable opponent in his last fight with Quigg) could be decent options, before eyeing a mouthwatering fight with Quigg in the later part of 2011.

Frampton improves to 8-0 (5KO’s) and Reid slips to 6-8-1 (3KO’s).

Lurgan welterweight Stephen Haughian continued his impressive form with a comprehensive win over tough opponent Dave ‘Rocky’ Ryan. Haughian out pointed Ryan over eight rounds taking a resounding score of 78-74 on Paul McCullagh’s score card, that somewhat belied the grueling test that he received from the Derby challenger. Haughian opened up brightly, utilizing a sharp jab and catching Ryan with several accurate right hooks to the head. Ryan’s best round was the second, were he caught Haughian was several good shots on the ropes. However, Haughian went on to score well behind his jab and outwork Ryan.
Haughian improves to 20-2-1 (8KO’s) while Ryan falls to 13-4.

Fellow Lurgan man Ryan Greene once again brought strong support to the Ulster Hall as he showcased his explosive punching power against Hungarian opponent Lazszlo Haaz by stopping his Hungarian opponent at 1.27 of the opening round. Greene used his southpaw jab to good effect in the early stages and picked his shots well. Haaz got caught in a blizzard of shots and referee Paul McCullagh jumped in.

Greene moves to 3-0 as a professional with his first stoppage win, while Budapest’s Laszlo falls to 4-3.

Walsall light-heavyweight Chris Keane improved to 4-0 (1KO) but was made to work hard for his latest success. Keane had to overcome a badly bloodied nose and a rugged opponent in the form of Sheffield’s experienced Carl Wild to post a 58-57 victory on referee Paul McCullagh’s scorecard. Keane’s left eye was closed over at the end of the contest and the fans warmed to rugged Wild – now 9-15-3 (1KO) – who felt he had done enough to win.

Troy James was due to meet Georgia’s Mikheil Gogebashvili and Jamie Conlan was scheduled to meet Mikheil’s compatriot Levan Garibashvili but neither Eastern European man made it to the arena due to extreme weather conditions. That left Jamie and Troy to entertain one another in a four-threes exhibition bout as both men got a run out in front of an appreciative crowd.

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