Debut headliner Hamzah Sheeraz survived a third-round scare to overpower Francisco Emanuel Torres at the Copper Box, London tonight.
The towering 6ft 3 Middleweight was fighting for the vacant WBC Silver title as his progress towards the world level continues at the right pace.
Promoter Frank Warren has tipped Sheeraz (16-0, 12 KOs) for the top since the early days of the Londoner’s career and would have seen further development against Torres
The Sheeraz jab and right hand were sound effects that could be heard around the arena with Torres (17-4-1, 5 KOs) on the receiving end of many.
The opening round began with each fighter’s jab moving them into the fight, but it was evident early on that Sheeraz carried the heavier dig. As the Argentine was looking to whip in a left hand it was the Brit who caught the eye with a single right much to the delight of his fans.
In the opening 30 seconds of the second Torres staggered back after being caught by a counter left. But South Americans are not built to yield at the first sign of trouble. However, the 32-year-old had to absorb a right hand down the pipe and a brief period on the ropes where Sheeraz went on the attack. It was a dominant and mature three minutes from the home favourite.
A Memorable Third
Fans leaving the Copper Box tonight will be talking tomorrow about round three. The ramrod jab of Sheeraz was becoming a problem for Torres and it was the shot that put him down just seconds into the session.
In the same time it took Torres to recover he came back with a right hand that a complacent Sheeraz walked on to and levelled the playing field. What next? Well, Sheeraz proved it to be a flash knockdown and a minute later put his more experienced opponent on the floor with a short right which he was beginning to favour.
Sixty seconds on the stool was a welcome breather. The fourth was Torres best round. His confidence was growing and was beginning to make Sheeraz miss who in turn carried his left hand higher to avoid any further mistakes.
The fifth began with Sheeraz catching a one-two on the gloves. Those single rights returned and prompted Torres to fire back. He may have thought he was in the fight, but the feeling was wiped out by a whipping right hand midway through the round which dropped Torres for the third and final time. Referee Mark Lyson had seen enough and saved the away fighter for another day.
Watch the final moments courtesy of Boxing on BT Sport:
— Boxing on BT Sport 🥊 (@BTSportBoxing) July 16, 2022
Sheeraz spoke about the highlight reel third round to BT Sports afterwards.
“I was sticking to the game plan behind the jab, knocked him down, didn’t respect his power, got a bit greedy and found myself on the canvas.”
“I was chatting to (trainer) Ricky [Funez] the other day and goes experience anything that happens in the fight, it goes in the locker. I got a kick up the backside from Ricky.”
A smiling Frank Warren said:
“I was really pleased with the performance. He knocked him over with his jab. He’s a very powerful puncher. He’s very smart, Ricky’s done a fantastic job.”
“We’ve got to move him up now. The opponent was a good, tough guy. He’s (Hamzah) making his mark on the world scene. Now, we’ve got move him forward. Every fight’s got to be a step up and tonight he’s got a few things in his locker to look back on.”
Watch the interview below courtesy of Frank Warren:
🗣 "I got a bit careless and I got a bit greedy."@sheeraz_hamzah and Frank Warren react to the middleweight overcoming being knocked down for the first time in his career to register a tenth successive KO victory 💪#SheerazTorres | Now | Live on @btsport 1 pic.twitter.com/avCbiVGjjv
— Frank Warren (@FrankWarren) July 16, 2022