Pickering Stops Hughes

Sham Pickering (33-6, 13 KOs) gained revenge on Friday night against Sean Hughes (14-7-1, 1 KOs) by stopping him in the 9th round of a scheduled 12-round bout for the BBofC British super bantamweight title at the Meadowside Leisure Centre, in Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England. Pickering, hurt Hughes with two big right hands in the 9th round, causing the referee move in and stop the bout, although it appeared to be a premature stoppage.

However, Hughes was awfully tired at the time, and the referee may have thought he didn’t figure to be able to do much more in the bout with the way he was pushing his shots and looking badly fatigued. In the first couple of rounds of the fight, the southpaw Hughes, 25, looked both the better skilled and the sharper puncher, as he landed numerous straight left hands and counter shots, catching Pickering often as he charged in clumsily. Unfortunately for Hughes, he looked to have punched himself out after the 2nd round, and began to take a beating in rounds three through five.

It was pretty drastic, as one second Hughes looked like a champion, and then in the next round, he was completely exhausted, pushing his punches and sweating badly. Pickering, who looked like he was in excellent shape, took over from there, knocking Hughes down twice in the 4th round with big right hands. The first knockdown came kind of suddenly, for Pickering was moving side to side on the outside, and then came rushing in and landed a big right hand, followed by another right that sent Hughes down. Shortly after getting up, Hughes was knocked down once again, as Pickering overwhelmed him with punches.

It was pretty sloppy at that point, with the referee letting Pickering get away with a lot of holding and hitting and rabbit punches. It was pretty dirty and not particularly interesting to watch, because Pickering looked so amateurish and beatable, but next to the spaghetti-armed Hughes, Pickering looked like another George Foreman.

Just when I thought that Hughes was finished, he came back strong in the 6th round, and beat Pickering all over the ring, hitting him with straight left hands. The punches weren’t that hard, but Pickering didn’t appear to like getting hit by them, because he ran like no tomorrow to avoid getting hit by them. In rounds seven through nine, Hughes was once again tired, and looking like he wanted to find a soft place to go and lay down.

I knew it wasn’t going to last much long, as Pickering hit him with pretty much anything he threw. Finally, the end came when Pickering landed a couple of hard right hands and the referee jumped in prematurely and stopped the fight. The crowd hated him for it, and showed him with boos. Bad stoppage, but it didn’t matter because Hughes was going to lose anyway.

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