Walsh brothers complete a perfect night out
AUDIO: Michael and Ryan Walsh could not hide their pride in Liam earning a first title for the Cromer brothers – and are determined to join him with belts of their own.
It took Michael, 26, just two minutes 14 seconds of the first round of his super bantamweight clash with Ian Bailey – who had lost on points to Ryan back in February – to bag his eighth knockout from eight professional fights with a huge uppercut.
Unbeaten Ryan, 24, never looked troubled as he dished out eight rounds of punishment on tough Scottish champion James Ancliff for win number 11.
And after their fights, the two brothers watched ringside to see Liam claim a thrilling Commonwealth super featherweight title after 12 rounds with Maxwell Awuku to round off a perfect night.
A nasty car accident meant Michael had been out of the ring since February, but he did not take long to get back in the swing of things.
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'No I didn't; I think I've been punching harder than I ever punched at the moment, I really do,' he said. 'He did exactly what I needed, he came to me and it made it a lot easier. I was really relaxed in the ring, I took it in my stride a little bit.
'I had no nerves or nothing because of the simple fact that I knew what sort of fight my brother Liam would have.
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'My car accident did me no favours, hence the reason I boxed at super bantamweight. But that's only one weight up. I got myself in top shape in 12 weeks.
'I am going back to bantam as soon as possible because I don't believe anyone can stay on their feet with me at bantam.
'I love Liam to bits, I couldn't be any prouder. Ryan's performance was brilliant, but the shine goes a little bit to Liam because he's got us our first title and that title means as much to all three of us as it does to him.
'We both want to follow him. Dean Powell does a brilliant job of finding us the right fights and Frank Warren gets the show on the road, and Sky are doing really well by us. So with all them behind us and trainer Graham Everett, I can't see what's stopping us.'
Ryan came close to nailing his man during his first trip through eight rounds, but Aberdonian Ancliff, who had lost just once in 21 fights before Saturday, hung on – for dear life more often than not – before Walsh took the convincing 80-73 points decision.
'I expected him to be tough, but not that tough,' said Ryan, 24. 'I had chances to maybe finish it but I kept letting him off the hook and I've got loads of respect for him because he did his job right.
'The first thing I said when I got out of the ring was that fight will do me the world of good. I felt in control to the point where it was everything that I needed.
'I'm hoping for a title fight soon and I'd like to think we can make a bit of history by being the first two twins to hold Commonwealth titles at the same time.
'Liam was mocking me when I came in after my fight and he ended up with the same look as me – that's why we're twins, if I get a few marks he's got to get a few marks!'
The brothers' trainer, Graham Everett added: 'Michael, the way he's been performing in the gym it was no surprise he's knocked anyone out. He punches like a light middleweight.
'Ryan had a completely tough opponent and that will do him the world of good. No harm done there, eight rounds, a good learning fight for him.'