Nick Ball, Pierce O'Leary and Anthony Cacace pick up wins in Belfast

Nick Ball defended his WBC Silver featherweight title against Ludumo Lamati in the evening’s chief support. Both men put their undefeated records on the line in the bout scheduled for 12 rounds. A win for either man would push them a step closer towards Rey Vargas’s WBC world title. Ball would give away a large height and reach advantage to Lamati but made it work to his advantage. Ball ducked and dived to find his way inside, consistently landing uppercuts and right hands leaning off the back foot. The 1st round was Ball’s most difficult of the evenings as he tried to adapt to Lamati’s size and reach, who used his jab effectively in the first three minutes. 

The fight itself was a torrid affair with action throughout, the punch output from both men was remarkable. However, it was Ball who would find himself coming out on top despite good activity from Lamati. Ball regularly would overpower the South African when they would find themselves in a clinch. Rounds 8 and 9 saw Ball really start to assert his dominance on the fight after a good 7th from Lamati which forced Ball to hold on for a good portion of the entire round after taking a left to the body. But it was in the next six minutes that saw Lamati get himself in more and more trouble as Ball continued to land the right hand and start to rough up his opponent. Ball pushed Lamati through the ropes in the 11th, the referee did not give the knockdown. The towel was thrown in by Lamati’s trainer in the 12th as he found himself unable to deal with the intense pressure Ball heaped on the South African all night. Ball landed a ramrod left followed by an abundance of punches that called an end to the fight.

Worrying scenes followed as Lamati collapsed in the corner just seconds later. The Johannesburg man was carried out in a stretcher after receiving attention from the doctors and received oxygen in the ring. He left to a standing ovation from the Belfast crowd. According to Lamati’s manager, who spoke to ProBox TV, “He is okay.” Lamati picks up a first career defeat with his record now standing at 21-1-1 (11 KOs). Ball continues his march up the ladder in the featherweight division with his record improving to 18-0 (11 KOs).

Belfast’s Anthony Cacace put his IBO title on the line against Poland’s Damian Wrzesinski in a 12 round contest. The 1st round started slightly tentatively, two decent right hands from Cacace towards the end of the first round brought a roar from the Belfast crowd. In the 2nd round Wrzesinski settled down to try and find some sort of rhythm in a pretty even round, with both having success. Rounds 3 and 4 saw Cacace start to box a bit more and try to force the pressure. He appeared to have worked out the man from Poland with good head movement and was picking his moments to land the right hand. The 5th saw Wrzesinski start to finally land his jab a little more regularly. However, it was Cacace who would land the bigger and better shot. A big left hook was the highlight for the Belfast man, Wrzesinski took it well. 

The 6th saw the man from Poland do his best to push the action, but it was Cacace who would continue to land the more eye-catching shots. The 7th carried on in the same vein but things were heating up a little. Cacace goaded Wrzesinski midway through the round which ended with a jab after the bell from the Pole. The action slowed in the 8th and 9th with the bout continuing down the same path, two good body shots from the Irishman were the highlight of the two rounds. The 10th saw Wrzesinski land a good right hand, but nothing to really deter the hometown fighter, who continued to switch up his stance and keep his opponent thinking. By rounds 11 and 12, as expected, things turned a little sluggish, with Wrzesinski landing a half decent uppercut. However, it was still Cacace in control with the better boxing. The scorecards read 118-111, 117-111 and 116-112 all in favour of Cacace to claim the unanimous decision win, his record improving 21-1 (7 KOs). Wrzesinski's record now stands at 26-3-2 (7 KOs).

The televised broadcast began with Pierce O’Leary defending his WBC regional title against Alin Florin Ciorceri in the super lightweight division. The bout scheduled for 10 rounds was nearly over before it even started. This one lasted just over a minute!

O’Leary started strongly behind a left handed jab, but he wasn’t in the mood for any overtime this evening. The Dubliner put Ciorceri on the canvas within the first 60 seconds with a great combination that started with an uppercut and ended with a left hook to the delight of the passionate Irish crowd. Remarkably Ciorceri made it to his feet on the 9 count. However, it didn’t take much longer for O’Leary to finish the job. Just seconds later he used a similar combination, as the left hook landed on top of the head over the Romanian Victor Loughlin jumped in to stop the fight at 1.11 in the first round. The Big Bang lived up to his alias with his record improving to 12-0 (7 KOs). Ciorceri’s record moves to 17-4 (7 KOs) picking up his second knockout defeat in the process.