(Images courtesy of Singe Vert Photography)
Pendleton and Wraith combined in style on Saturday night at the Walker Activity Dome as the homes stars shone brightly, Billy Snaith claiming the International Challenge belt and Jeff Saunders continuing his progression in style with a thunderous showing of his own.
Wins on the undercard also saw Kyle Redfearn claim an impressive stoppage win whilst Jamie Humble and debutants Darren Reay and Krisy Pilkington also collected victories.
Snaith’s challenge belt contest against visiting Michal Vosyka went the distance but the Ferryhill flier kept his composure and used his reach well to win through on points; Saunders though, as chief support, stole the show with a thunderous performance against Mohamed Larabi.
Both fighters certainly came for the win and, although Saunders admitted afterwards that: “I stepped off the gas from the third onwards, it was a mistake,” he did enough despite deductions, to win through.
That second round though for Saunders was certainly the highlight of the night, the undefeated fighter now 10-0, battering Larabi into near submission but for his pulling back.
Fighting Chance had four of their own stars on the undercard and, after debutant Darren Reay started the evening’s proceedings with a points win over four rounds, Jamie Humble took to Luke Fash and claimed a similar result.
Krisy Pilkington then won his debut with a tough battle against Yousef Al Hamidi before Kyle Redfearn, sandwiched between Saunders and Snaith, and claimed the only stoppage of the night. Facing a late change of opponent in Callum Ide, Redfearn was unfazed and inflicted an eight count right at the end of the second, saving his opponent.
Coming out for the third though and Redfearn was relentless and aggressive, putting Ide down again to claim a third round stoppage win.
Afterwards promoter Lewis Pendleton said: “It’s been a fantastic night for what was actually a hard show to put together.
“We had some genuine scraps and pitting Larabi against Saunders wasn’t an accident whilst Redfearn’s was a phenomenal test. It all meant that the lads had to come in at odd weights which they did brilliantly to do.
“I’m delighted for Redfearn though, Pilkington was sensational on his debut whilst Reay was superb. They did great to perform the way they did and we had over 1400 in the Dome.
“That shows the thirst for boxing in the region and it was great to work with Steve Wraith and his team again as well as with Greenwich Leisure Limited who were fantastic helping putting the show on.”
After winning his tenth straight fight, which was dedicated to daughter Lily, the undefeated Jeff Saunders added: “He (Larabi) was tough, very hard to get rid of wasn’t he
“I always felt in control of the fight even though I took my foot off the gas in the third round. That second though, that was good and I felt him tighten up but I became a bit complacent.
“You learn from those little mistakes though as they could cost you as it was a tough fight to be in. Fair play to him although I knew I had his number.
“Next month though I’m stepping up again as I go for eight rounds and will be back in the gym and raring to go on Tuesday, ready for the next one.
“I just did what my coaches (Jeff Snr and Mark McGuinness) said in the corner and could hear the fans, especially our Brad, my mum (Tracey) and Lorrena, shouting me on ringside. I owe them, and Steve, a lot.”
The next outing for Saunders and Snaith, alongside Neil Hepper and Carl Wilson, will be at Hardwick Hall next month and then at the Rainton Meadows Arena on May 27 which will be headlined by two Northern Area title fights.