Liam Walsh v Gervonta Davis: Walsh feels the power of world champion

Referee Michael Alexander steps in to stop the fight in round three, despite the protests of Liam Wa

Referee Michael Alexander steps in to stop the fight in round three, despite the protests of Liam Walsh. Picture: Alan Stanford/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Alan Stanford/Focus Images Ltd

Liam Walsh's bid for world glory is over – but only for now.

The 31-year-old from Cromer was beaten inside three rounds by world champion Gervonta Davis in their IBF super-featherweight title clash at the Copperbox Arena on Saturday night.

Davis had gone into the fight claiming he was on another level from Walsh, who was suffering his first defeat after 21 wins as a pro. For those who dismissed it as more hype from the man who has come under the wing of boxing legend Floyd Mayweather Junior, the 22-year-old from Baltimore did indeed prove that he is a special world champion.

Davis had shown signs of his hand speed and power in the first two rounds. Walsh tried to keep his distance but, as he admitted later, he was too keen to engage the American.

The battle plan was to take Davis into the second half of the fight and if that meant keeping a safe distance, then so be it. But the plan went out of the window in the third round when Davis saw an opening and launched a vicious attack.

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Walsh fell to the canvas and took a count. Davis attacked again, prompting referee Michael Alexander to quickly step in – a decision which the Walsh camp questioned as too hasty.

'That was a bad stoppage,' said Walsh immediately after the fight. 'He's very fast but while I'm not saying the result would have been different at least give me a chance.

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'In England we have this thing in stopping fights too soon.'

'I used my boxing IQ tonight before I hurt him,' said Davis. 'The referee got it right. It was just a matter of time.'

Walsh admitted he was 'hurting inside' after the defeat, but vowed not to give up on his world title dream.

Earlier, twin brother Ryan made the third successful defence of his British featherweight title with an 11th-round stoppage of durable Northern Irishman Marco McCullough.

Because the fight started soon after 7.30pm it enabled him to have some special help in his corner – brother Liam.

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