sport

Galahad claims European title

Rising British star Kid Galahad took another step on the path to world-title glory on Saturday as he won the European super-bantamweight belt.

The Sheffield fighter won the strap by beating Spain's Sergio Prado at his home city's Ponds Forge venue.

Often compared to Prince Naseem Hamed, who also came from Sheffield and fought out of the same Ingle gym, Galahad dominated the fight.

The judges gave him a unanimous points decision, with scores of 117-111, 118-110 and 120-108 on the cards seeing the 24-year-old claim the previously-vacant title. The later score, courtesy of Anssi Perajoki, saw Galahad as the winner of every round.

Galahad, who recently gave up the British title to focus on the next level, was a fully deserved winner after spending most of the fight on the front foot and regularly flummoxing his opponent by switching to a southpaw stance.

He told Channel 5: "I thought I boxed very well.

"He was a tough kid. Every time I caught him he fought back.

"I knew it was going to be a hard fight, that's why I trained my hardest (for it)."

Asked when he would be ready for a world-title shot, Galahad replied: "Within two fights."

Bruising began to form under Prado's left eye as early as the second round.

Switching between a southpaw and an orthodox stance, he dominated the fifth, eventually landing a couple of straight lefts with his opponent against the ropes and a flurry of punches at the end of the round.

Prado had little answer to Galahad's hand speed and at the halfway point it appeared clear that he would need a major turnaround.

Galahad appeared to have the 31-year-old in trouble in the seventh as he landed an impressive right hook early in the round and a flurry of punches in the final 30 seconds but Prado made it to the bell.

Prado was clearly beginning to tire in the latter stages, throwing increasingly desperate right hands as Galahad kept his work tidy while never seemingly going for the finishing blow.

The crowd thought Prado was down in the 11th as Galahad landed a few shots in the corner but referee Luigi Muratore, rightly, adjudged it to be a slip.

The fight followed a similar pattern in the final round as Galahad easily kept Prado at bay to maintain his perfect professional record with a 16th win and take the title.

On the same bill, Travis Dickinson produced a third-round stoppage of Danny McIntosh to progress to the semi-finals of the recently-launched MaxiNutrition Knockout tournament - an eight-man light-heavyweight event which will see a winner crowned later in the year.

Dickinson put his man down three times before the referee called the fight off, claiming the English title in the process.

Also on the undercard, former world light-welterweight champion Junior Witter returned to winning ways with a points victory over Max Maxwell.

The 40-year-old, now fighting as a light-middleweight, had lost his previous two bouts.