Harry Scraff upset long-reigning British and Commonwealth welterweight champion Ekow Essuman, dethroning the Essuman to possess all the domestic marbles in a Midlands derby at the AO Arena, Manchester.
Scraff would claim victory courtesy of a unanimous decision.
The opening two rounds saw Scraff and Essuman trade blows, establishing their range before the action heated up from round three onwards.
The third round saw Essuman start firmly pinning Scraff against the ropes and unloading to the body before Scraff returned to the centre ring, attempting to reestablish behind the jab. Essuman began to close the distance more and more with his footwork; however, Scraff was able to land on multiple occasions, catching the champion as he came into close range.
Both fighters would land early in the fourth, Scraff a long straight hand and Essuman to the body Scraffcourtesy of a four-punch combination. Scraff would press onto the front foot to impose his physical size on Essuman, landing a number of jabs to keep Essuman at bay. Essuman was starting to look uncomfortable with the work rate of Scraff, who was not allowing the champion to be able to set himself to land punches of his own.
Five would saw time called for a foul by Essuman, whose forearm pushed Scraff to the canvas heavily. This would only see Essuman come forward aggressively onto the front foot. However, Scraff was undeterred and able to nullify Essuman's work despite taking a number of flush shots at close quarters. Essuman would finish the round strongly, displaying his renowned work rate and gritty fighting nature.
Both fighters would have their successes in the sixth, Scraff courtesy of long-ranged shots and Essuman landing on the inside with combinations, despite Scraff regaining his composure following the previous round. Scraff on the bell would finish strongly, landing a three-punch straight combination.
Seven, Scraff would control the momentum proceedings and Essuman’s ability to come onto the inside by reestablishing his jab, keeping distance and catching the champion falling in on the inside despite Essuman’s best efforts to make the encounter an attritional affair.
Eight was a strong round for Scraff, landing heavily with the left and wobbling Essuman with a short flurry just before the bell. On multiple occasions, Essuman was trapped amongst the ropes with Scraff’s confidence in full flow despite his underdog status leading into the contest.
Essuman, in the ninth, was able to land as Scraff attempted to jump in due to his confidence on multiple occasions in a much more tame round in comparison to the previous round.
Essuman would start ten with a straight right hand followed shortly after by a left-right hook combination, which Scraff returned with a one-two combination of his own. Scraff would re-establish his jab in the mid-round period and box patiently, forcing Essuman to quicken up his feet lat in the round to land a short hooking combination in the final ten seconds.
Scraff would set out his stall in the eleventh,, demonstrating a high work rate and finishing telling success with the backhand left, sending spray flying from the head of Essuman. The champion would proceed in an attempt to tie up the challenger. This would continue into the final round, with Scraff landing more hard straight left hands as Essuman attempted to tie up his strong-coming challenger.
The contest would ultimately be left in the hands of the judges after a competitive twelve rounds of boxing for the highest of domestic honours.
The judges were all in unison and deservedly scored the contest in favour of Harry Scraff by unanimous decision with scores of 116-113, 117-112 and 115-113, becoming British and Commonwealth welterweight champion in the process.
Scraff improves his record to thirteen wins against two losses, while Essuman drops to the first defeat of his career following nineteen straight victories as a professional.