Boxing: Harrison retains title in three rounds

March 11 2005

Scott Harrison retained his WBO world featherweight title in impressive
style with a third-round stoppage over American-based Armenian William
Abelyan at Braehead Arena.

The Scotsman, backed by around 5,000 partisan fans, came out with all
guns blazing right from the first bell and devastated the challenger
with a stunning display of powerful and aggressive boxing.

After he had dropped Abelyan for the third time in the third round
with some terrific rights and lefts the referee had no option but to
step in and prevent Abelyan from taking any further punishment.

It was a terrific victory for the Cambuslang fighter who silenced the
challenger after being criticised heavily by him during the normal
pre-fight hype.

The signs that Harrison was in the mood to do a job on the challenger
came right from the first bell as he emerged from his stool and
connected with a couple of good left hooks and a right uppercut which
had Abelyan already struggling.

The challenger composed himself by the end of the first round but
the second bell again saw Harrison come out aggressively.

A flurry of punches midway through the round almost had Abelyan in
trouble against the ropes but to his credit the Armenian again worked
himself out of trouble and began to throw the occasional left hook.

But the third round was just a devastating display of boxing by the
Scotsman. A right hand from Harrison had Abelyan on the floor and
having to take a standing count of eight.

Harrison followed up with a concentrated attack which again had
Abelyan down on the canvas.

The Armenian was somehow allowed to get up for a third time and have
a go but when Harrison continued his savage attack the referee could
only step in and save Abelyan from further punishment.

It was a terrific way to end the fight for Harrison who again put
on a terrific display for his loyal fans who cheered him from the
rafters as he held his belt aloft.

The challenger looked stunned as he sat on his stool before making
an ignominious exit from the ring.

Afterwards a euphoric Harrison claimed it was the best performance
of his career to date and dedicated the fight to the fans who cheered
him on during a dramatic three rounds of boxing.

He said: “It was the best I’ve boxed so far, it was three rounds and
after I caught him with the right hand the first time it was just a
matter of time before it was stopped.

“I don’t know if it was the best punch I’ve thrown, I’ll have to have
a look at it on tape and see but I’ll tell you what, it felt good.

“I just couldn’t wait to get into the ring and do a job and I’m glad
I did so well for all the fans because you can’t beat the support in
the Braehead Arena.

“Scotland aren’t doing too well in sport at the moment so I’m going to
try and go as far as I can and put on a show for them time and again.”

Harrison, who had refused to predict a knockout or stoppage during
the pre-fight hype, admitted he was unconcerned about how he retained
his title.

He said: “I knew it wasn’t going to go 12 rounds but you didn’t know
if it was going to go three rounds or 12 rounds or whatever.

“Sometimes it takes time but in this fight he went early but that’s
boxing for you. It just came off for me on the night.”

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