Bideford ABC fans were treated to a great night of boxing at the Durrant House Hotel on Friday.
The show was a sell-out with a great bill of 13 fights, featuring 10 Bideford boxers, Welsh fighters from Baglan Bulldogs and WBO Intercontinental champion Tommy Langford.
Top of the bill was a real treat for the locals: Kyle England’s homecoming bout, boxing for the first time on home soil since winning the British Bantamweight title in 2012.
England had a tough task in front of him, facing a former national champion Max Deeble of Launceston ABC, but won on points after a strong final round display.
Another Bideford prospect that showed the same grit was Pete Macdonald, making his debut aged 24.
Macdonald had a bad start against Zack Bainbridge of Golden Ring ABC, being put down with a nasty body shot in the first round, but he dug deep to bring himself to his feet and win on points.
Another first-timer in the ring for Bideford was Heavyweight Matt Wade, who learned the hard way how one punch can change a fight.
He was caught by Richard Griffiths of Baglan in the last 10 seconds of the fight, forcing a TKO.
Tom Baldwin soon had the local crowd back cheering, though, as he beat Nathan Bantick of Baglan in the fight of the night.
Another crowd pleaser making a comeback was Ryan Gumbley, who faced Jack Etheridge of St Just.
Gumbley enjoyed good first and last rounds, but lost out on a tight split decision.
Josh Short’s Cornish opponent Ryan Tonkin from St Agnes didn’t have such a good trip as he struggled to land a glove on the elusive fighter.
Short countered with singles in the first round and built as the fight went on, landing combinations at the finishing bell to win a wide points decision.
Alex Dovell was unable to turn things around in his rematch with Dave Lewis as it ended up the same way as their first meeting – Dovell losing on points.
Frank Blackmore showed a great engine to beat Jack Evans of Intense ABC on points, and Callum Cunningham showed some quality boxing in a tight defeat to Sam Dockree of Cwmbran.
Jacob Stevenson enjoyed his second win in as many weeks, this time beating Baglan’s Dan Edwards.