Islington boxer reaches national quarter-final in comeback fight
PUBLISHED: 18:46 15 October 2014 | UPDATED: 18:46 15 October 2014
Islington BC's Scott Smart secured a national quarter-final spot with an impressive second-round stoppage in his first bout for a year.
Smart had been out of the ring since October 2013 due to injury – and his return was further delayed by a sequence of byes that took him through the regional stages of the Development Championships.
But the Islington fighter finally made his comeback on Saturday in Swindon, taking on Callum Bedford (Rough Diamonds) for a place in the last eight of the Class A Under-52kg.
Smart was quickly back in the groove, landing a good combination of head and body shots that prompted the referee to enforce a standing eight count on his opponent.
At the end of the first round, the Islington man unleashed another flurry of strong punches that enforced a second count – and he maintained the pressure going into the next round.
A series of southpaw hook shots to the head hurt Bedford again and it came as no great surprise when the referee called a halt to the contest midway through the second round.
Smart now progresses to the national quarter-finals this weekend, where he will be joined by two of his Islington team-mates, Jeff Ofori and Sherif Musah.
Ofori received a bye in the Class B Under-64kg, while Musah advanced to the last eight of the Class B Under-81kg by defeating the experienced Luke Maisey (Factory ABC) on points.
Maisey took the initiative with his southpaw lead, which left the Islington man struggling to land powerful shots, but he enjoyed greater success as he got closer towards the end of the first round.
Musah continued to stay close to his opponent, maintaining a high work-rate for the remainder of the contest, and that was enough to secure him victory by unanimous decision.