The Monday Supplement: What We Can Take from The Brook/Campbell Card in Hull

By ciaran123 - 07/15/2013 - Comments

brook333By Ciaran McKinney: Craven Park was the venue. There was a stacked card from top to bottom, each bout providing something different for the packed crowd in Hull. Eddie Hearn made something very clear in the run up to this event. Without Luke Campbell, this event would have been on a much smaller scale. A professional debut in an open air stadium, never mind headlining the bill? Matchroom would have us believe that baby-faced 25 year old truly is the real deal. But more on that later.

The first fight I shall focus on was the dust-up between domestic rivals Derry Matthews and Tommy ‘Boom Boom’ Coyle. This match was by no means a technical masterclass, and neither of these men will really ever reach the upper echelon of the sport. However, what they did achieve, was the sustained attention of the raucous crowd, who were so vocal in no small part due to local hero Coyle applying most of the pressure. Derry Matthews came into the fight favourite and in the pre-fight interviews he exuded confidence, however in the first round, the almost hyper active Coyle had the veteran stunned, pinning him against the ropes and had him blowing hard on his stool by the end of the first round.

This was the story of the fight, Coyle dominated all the way, yet with two round remaining,  a quite stunning left hook from the battered and seemingly defeated Matthews, flattened his opponent, who was unable to continue after the count. This bout was encouraging for young Tommy Coyle, who showed quite a bit of skill and aggression.

Despite the heartbreaking defeat, he will come again and no doubt be challenging domestic straps soon enough. For Matthews, we know he is a limited fighter, but one who has heart and a cracking left hook to boot. He has reached his peak, but is capable of of putting on an entertaining bout with almost anyone. This fight crude and awkward, yet fueled by a passionate crowd, it captivated an audience and showed just how everything in this sport can be changed with one punch. It encapsulated heartbreak and ecstacy all in one, hats off to both men.

So on to the next fight, which pitted the great Welsh hope Lee Selby against Viorel Simion. This was pegged as being the big test for the largely hyped Selby, who has spent the past two years breezing through his opposition without any real challenge. The fight ended with Selby claiming a unanimous points decision, visibly lacking in this fight were the Welshman’s usual antics of showboating and vicious combinations.

This was in no small part due to the constant offensive from Simion, who whilst visibly limited, kept his opponent under wraps for large spells of the match up. The fight was certainly closer than the scorecards read. So did Selby pass the test? In certain ways, you could agree. What he needed was a gutcheck and he got it. His opponent ranked #4 WBO but this did not seem the case, Simion was not of the highest caliber yet at no point did Selby ever seem likely to hurt him, let alone score a knockout. The important thing here is that he picked up the win and with that will come confidence. What impressed me was that he very quick to admit that their are lot  of improvements to be made and a serious amount of graft in the gym to come. We look forward to the future to see if he can live up to the hype.

In the co-feature of the card, Kell Brook went toe to toe once more with old foe Carson Jones. The original was a grueling battle that gave the so called ‘Special One’ the scare of his life. He was meant to dismantle the seemingly inferior Oklahoma native, yet it didn’t happen. So a year on, and after a hard time with injuries, the man from Sheffield sought to set the record straight and get himself back on track. He did so emphatically, taking the battle to Jones from the first bell, scoring knockdowns and before the referee had to step in and save Jones. As convincing as the victory was, Jones was a shadow of the man that almost scored the victory a year ago. His defense was non existent and was there to be hit. With all the weaknesses he showed, he still managed to get at Brook and hurt him. At times in the fifth and sixth round, I thought we may be seeing a repeat of the previous scrap.

Kell seemed to lose some of his stamina after the first round, but I must give him the benefit of the doubt and put it down to ring rust. This fight was all about rebuilding, boosting confidence. It was a solid performance, but it remains to be seen if  ‘Special K’ can cut it at the top tier, Jones is a warrior, but a man who has lost 10 fights, not a world beater by any means. This fight did not silence critics or end doubts.

Eddie Hearn is saying that a big name bout is in the offing for Brook before the end of the year, lets just hope its not Marcos Maidana as his power may be too much to handle, or the likes of a Shane Mosley, as he is a shot fighter and a victory would prove nothing. The future is bright for Kell Brook, but I can’t help but think he needs a few more fights and step-ups in class before he attempts a run at the World Title.

In the main event, we got our first glimpse at the next great hope for British boxing as Olympic Gold Medalist Luke Campbell made his debut in the paid ranks. It was certainly an explosive way to kick off his new career, dismantling the largely inferior Andy Harris, causing the ref to call it off after only 88 seconds. This fight was a nice taster of what may be to come, but nothing more. You rarely learn anything from a fighter debut, as they will usually come up against a journeyman that wont provide anything more than a routine workout. The real test will be over the coming year, as it has been stated that Campbell will be fighting once, if not twice a month for the next 12 months. These are exciting times for the young man, who must not get ahead of himself. The professional game is a big difference to the amateur game. Olympic Gold is no guarantee of future success or World Titles, don’t believe me, two words ‘Audley Harrison’.

On a final note, this was an entertaining night of boxing, which revealed quite a few things and reassured us as well. What does the future have in store for Brook, Campbell, Selby and even the defeated Tommy Coyle? We cannot be sure, but one things for certain, we will be entertained.

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