Two young, unbeaten hopefuls had their first defeats as Frank Warren’s diminishing stable was dealt another big blow at the Copper Box.
Super middleweight prospect Frank Buglioni lost his WBO European strap to experienced Belarussian Sergey Khomitsky, while amateur sensation Georgie Kean suffered his first loss in only his fourth fight against journeyman William Warburton.
Cruiserweight Tony Conquest also fell to a KO defeat at the hands of Ovill McKenzie, though it was Buglioni’s loss that will likely hit Warren the hardest.
With James DeGale joining Carl Froch at Matchroom Sports and George Groves also hooking up with the promotional giants for the second Froch clash, Warren is left outgunned in the super middleweight division and Buglioni is his only hope of challenging his British compatriots.
The manner of this defeat will certainly leave both Warren and Buglioni with food for thought going forward. Despite coming in with a record of 28-10-2, Khomitsky narrowly lost to Martin Murray last time out and is probably regarded as one level below world class, a massive step up for the 24-year-old in his 13th bout.
Buglioni struggled to establish himself upon Khomitsky, failing to use significant height and reach advantages. The Englishman was caught from as early as the second round with swinging left hooks before the Swedish referee bizarrely administered a standing count in round six, during which trainer Mark Tibbs withdrew his fighter.
Kean’s failure against underrated Warburton was possibly the surprise of the night. The heralded amateur is still learning the ropes in professional boxing and was outhustled by Warbuton’s bustling, come-forward style. Despite losing 60 of his bouts, the victor is a dangerous journeyman and deserved to beat George Michael Carman two weeks ago.
While fighters continue to jump ship to other promoters, Warren can ill afford many more nights like this.
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