Walsh finish ‘world class’
Liam Walsh successfully came through the first defence of his Commonwealth super-featherweight title with what trainer Graham Everett described as a 'world class finish'.
The Cromer fighter stopped Jon Kays in front of his own Wigan fans in the 10th round after a brace of crunching body shots sent his opponent to the canvas for the second time on the night.
But Everett admitted that the 24-year-old left the north-west determined to iron out a few 'flaws' in his performance.
'To be honest, obviously Liam is a work in progress, we are learning all the time and we mustn't forget that this was only his 11th professional fight, which means he is still an absolute baby in boxing terms. I think first and foremost you have to credit Jon Kays, he absolutely fought his heart out.
'Although we had prepared for 12 hard rounds, he probably did surprise us. He was so strong, so tough and took some seriously good shots.
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'The one massive thing to come out of this is the 10th round, it was a world-class finish.'
Walsh, who suffered a minor cut to the head in the third, had Kays on the floor in the fourth round, a big left hook wobbling Kays' legs before a barrage of punches put him down.
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But Kays fought back and rocked Walsh with an overhand right in the eighth.
But Walsh's class shone through with a brilliant response in the ninth before he ended it in the 10th.
'He just switched body-head, he opened it up and finished it with a world-class left hook to the body,' said Everett. 'That is exactly the difference between Liam and a lot of other fights – he's got that tucked away.
'I know he is disappointed and he certainly didn't box as well as he is capable of, but he is a work in progress. It was a great learning fight for him. It is now his second championship fight and he has come through and won in world-class fashion. The finish, I can't emphasise it enough, was absolutely superb.
'Liam, myself, everybody in your gym wants perfection, that's how you get to the top and stay at the top. The thing is he made a few more mistakes, got caught by silly shots, than he would normally, but he came through it.
'But it is all a learning curve. We move on and learn from that and we will have a sit down with (promoter) Frank Warren in the next couple of weeks and see where we go from there.'