‘I saw it - and I took it’ - Liam Goddard on his sensational Norwich debut

Liam Goddard in action during his successful pro boxing debut in Norwich Picture: Mark Hewlett

Liam Goddard in action during his successful pro boxing debut in Norwich Picture: Mark Hewlett - Credit: Archant

Liam Goddard proved every cloud has a silver lining as he produced a sensational debut performance in front of his home fans to ease some of the frustrations surrounding the latest Norwich fight night.

The 22-year-old precision engineer found himself the star attraction at The Halls in Norwich Friday after the headline act, Iain Martell, was left high and dry after a succession of would-be opponents pulled out.

But Goddard delivered in style, putting Yadollah Ghasemi on the canvas in the second round then forcing the referee to step in and call a halt when he did the same in round three.

It was a hugely accomplished performance from the southpaw welterweight, backed by a noisy group of local supporters.

'I loved it,' said Goddard. 'It was brilliant.

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'The plan was to go in, pick my shots and not look for the knockout but, obviously, if you see it you have to take what you can get – and I saw it and I took it.

'I am lucky because we have a top gym with Graham Everett in Norwich so I can improve and learn – every time I spar I learn something so it is on to the next one – wherever they tell me I am ready for it.'

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Goddard's performance brought a smile to the face of Everett after a difficult week.

'It has been very, very frustrating this week with the loss of Iain, a massive loss to any show, but it was not for the lack of trying. We have been everywhere but there are so many obstacles put in our way. We went to the 11th hour and just couldn't pull it off. It is not the first time and won't be the last. It has put a lot of pressure on everybody,

but all's well that ends well and what did happen was very, very good.

'I didn't expect that from Liam. I don't think he is particularly noted as a big puncher. I would have said he is a spiteful puncher, but that was absolutely clinical.'

Wisbech welterweight Joe Steed made it three wins from three outings, with a 40:37 decision over tough Bulgarian Iliyan Markov. Connor Vian produced one of his best performances to stop Midlander MJ Hall in the sixth and final round. Vian had lost his last outing but with the pressure of defending an unbeaten record lifted, he looked more composed and was on top throughout.

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