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Josh Taylor Makes Light Work Of Campos In Glasgow

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Josh Taylor (12-0-0, 11KOs) showed he was several levels above late replacement Winston Campos (30-4-5, 18KOs) by disposing of the challenger from Nicaragua early in the third round. It was Taylor’s second defence of his WBC Silver 140lb title. It was an emphatic victory.

Up until last week Taylor had been getting ready to glove up against Humberto Soto. The veteran, former two weight world champion suffered a cut in sparring and Campos stepped in. Any fears that the late change may unsettle Taylor, or that Taylor may underestimate Campos and start slowly were quickly put to bed by the Scotsman’s focused opening round. It seems like, as well as being outrageously talented, Taylor is also a dedicated professional who will continue to roll with the punches of the pro game and always come to the ring fully prepared to perform at a high level.

The Hydro in Glasgow was well populated and the crowd witnessed Taylor jabbing to the head and body and dominating the range of the contest in the opening session. Campos was tentative and made an early mistake of holding Taylor in close when he felt his back on the ropes. His punishment for that was two right hooks to the body. Campos now knew the business part of his trip had started. As comfortable as Taylor was boxing at distance, he looked destructive up close. Campos survived the opener but his body language indicated that he wished he had someone to replace him for the second round.

And Taylor stepped on the gas in round two. Although Campos’ defence looked low and lazy anyway, Taylor kept the pressure on him with jabs to the body. Now constantly on the back-foot Campos had to eat a right hook to the head followed by a quick one to the body. As Taylor upped the ante he looped a left hand around the guard of his foe and floored him with a shot which landed just behind the ear. Campos got up after eight seconds but there was no way he could turn the tide. More sustained pressure from the home boxer resulted in Campos being dazzled and floored again by a six punch combination – it was a blur as Taylor hit home with a left uppercut, a sneaky left hook to the mid-section then left and rights to the head. Campos slumped on the canvas and rose just before nine. He somehow got to the end of the round.

It didn’t matter though. Round three was still in its dawn when, after a close exchange, Taylor caught Campos with a left and he turned his back and went down. He got up quickly but the referee reached ten and perhaps sensing Campos’ plight and unwillingness to continue waved the fight off. The official time was 44 seconds of round three.

It capped of a short but very professional outing from Taylor. He did what was expected of him and will move on to tougher challenges.

The winner spoke after the announcement: “I was boxing nice and calm. I had a look in the first round and started getting my flow really quickly. It didn’t phase me at all (the change of opponent) I just reverted back to my amateur days – you never know who you’re fighting until the day before. It didn’t phase me at all. I didn’t change my mindset, I just took it as it came. It was good.”

That summed up the performance nicely. There was a fellow professional with 38 outings in front of him tonight and he did a demolition job on him. We will hopefully see Taylor in action again in the early summer as he continues to pile the pressure on to those fighters just above him in the WBC rankings. As Winston Campos found out in Glasgow on Saturday night, once Taylor hits his stride he is extremely difficult to stop.

UNDERCARD DETAILS

A lively and fast paced undercard proceeded Taylor’s bout with Campos. The evening opened at 5.30pm local time with the vacant Scottish middleweight title being contested between Iain Trotter and Marc Kerr. I arrived just as the first round was ending (public transport) to see that Trotter already had a bad looking cut above his right eye. The next round was competitive and it looked like we had a domestic firefight brewing in the third. Both men were giving as good as they got but after one exchange that was being dominated by Kerr the referee intervened, looked at Trotter’s cut and promptly stopped the fight. It looked early and hopefully they can rematch.

The next match of note saw young Scotsman Gary Rae, roared on by an impressive load of fans, box beautifully behind his sharp jab en route to stopping Zoltan Horvath of Hungary in the fourth and final round of their super-bantamweight contest. Rae, nudging his ledger to 6-0 is one to watch.

Following on Chantelle Cameron of England defended her IBO lightweight world title with a shutout victory over France’s Myriam Dellal. Cameron has real power and she imposed that on Dellal all night. It was credit to Dellal’s movement and durability that she heard the final bell. Cameron is being talked about as a future opponent for Ireland’s Katie Taylor – that would be worth seeing.

We were then treated to Lee McGregor’s third professional bout. Pablo Narvaez of Nicaragua was in the away corner and he barely landed a glove on McGregor as the 19-year-old treated the crowd to a showcase of his punching skills and defence. McGregor got the stoppage in the second round. He is a genuine threat at UK and European level already in the 118lb division. Another name to remember.

Topping the undercard was Jason Easton (Scotland) vs. Glenn Foot (England) for the vacant Commonwealth 140lb title. This was a brutal encounter, with Easton being on the receiving end of the worst of it. The fight started well for Foot as he cracked Easton with a jaw shaking right hand in the second frame and the Scotsman was down. He managed to get up but looked unsteady. Foot looked stronger on the inside and was dominating the frequent exchanges there. Easton should have been boxing but he was getting drawn in to a tear-up. There were several rounds where the home fighter, boxing well, was caught with eye catching right hands from his opponent. This punishment would take its toll. A frantic 8th round saw both men going for it and both having their moments but at the end of it Easton seemed to be the one with less fuel remaining in his tank. The rounds that followed were understandably slower paced but Foot had money in the bank and he floored Easton again in the 11th round with another right hand to the chin. The referee began to count but then reacted to Easton’s corner’s request to stop the contest by doing just that. It was a fantastic win for the visiting fighter and his tactics were on the money. Easton remained down and received oxygen before being allowed back to his feet. A visit to hospital was mandated. It was a first professional defeat for Easton and one which will hurt but hopefully he recovers and can resume boxing. It is easy to sit ringside and think a fighter should be moving his head more or getting out of the pocket quicker – not so simple in the heat of battle. If Easton wants to have a long career he may need to make a few adjustments but that is not for me to advise him. Foot and his vocal fans who had made the journey from England can enjoy their win, they certainly played their part in another memorable night of professional boxing in Glasgow.

A boxing fan since his teenage years, Morrison began writing about the sport in July 2016. He appreciates all styles of boxing and has nothing but respect for those who get in the ring for our entertainment. Morrison is from Scotland and can be found on Twitter @Morrie1981.

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