Hobson climbs off the floor to stop Keeton

By Ben Carey


Hobson climbs off the floor to stop Keeton

Mark Hobson recovered from a knockdown in round two to eventually overwhelm John “Buster” Keeton in the fourth round to retain his British and Commonwealth cruiserweight titles at the Barnsley Metrodome on Thursday night.

The pair wasted little time in getting down to business and traded bombs from the off. The shorter Keeton took away Hobson’s height and reach advantages and was dangerous with hooks inside. Hobson finally created some distance towards the end of the opening round and caught Keeton with a left to the body and a right through the middle.

Hobson was urged to keep the fight at range by his corner in-between rounds but was soon placed in trouble at the start of the second. With his back against the ropes the champion looked to land an uppercut but was beaten to the punch and nailed by a massive overhand right by Keeton.

Hobson dropped to his knees but rose at the count of four to receive referee Dave Parris’s mandatory eight-count. Keeton, a heavy pre-fight underdog, sensed causing a sensational upset and tore into Hobson upon the resumption of the action. An uppercut had Hobson looking uncomfortable but the Huddersfield man managed to smother the majority of the eager Keeton’s work while allowing his own head to clear. Hobson started to work Keeton’s body but was again stunned by a lead left hook from Keeton who despite expanding a lot of energy was clearly still a potent threat.

Both fighters were becoming increasingly desperate as they sought to end proceedings at the outset of round three in what had degenerated into an action-packed brawl. Hobson was still struggling to keep the fight at range but was now being allowed to get his punches off as Keeton’s workrate began to slow. Short lefts and rights stunned Keeton who presented himself as an inviting target in close. However, just when it seemed that Hobson was taking over he emerged from a clinch with blood above his left eye. Stung into action, Hobson tried to finish Keeton off with a volley of straight rights.

Hobson’s corner did a good job of stemming the flow of blood and the champion began the fourth well, drilling Keeton with an uppercut and right hand as he recklessly marched forward. A left hook sent Keeton staggering into Hobson’s corner as the challenger began to show definite signs of wilting now. There was less coming back from Keeton and when hurt by a series of right hands from Hobson referee Parris stepped in to wave the contest off with twenty seconds remaining in round four with Keeton on the verge of going down.

With the win Hobson improves to 25-4-1 (13) and is now expected to relinquish his British and Commonwealth titles in pursuit of further honours.


Send questions and comments to: benjcarey@yahoo.co.uk