IN the biggest bout of his life, the pride of Pendle Shayne Singleton stole Curtis Woodhouse’s treasured English light welterweight title.
After an intriguing and entertaining 10-round contest, a section of the Bowler’s Exhibition Centre, housing a vociferous “Barmy Army”, went wild as Singleton claimed the second belt of his pro career, via a split decision, to maintain his 100 per cent record.
The 23-year-old was imprisoned in the ring’s perimeter for the majority as Woodhouse expectedly fought on the front foot, cutting off the ring. But Singleton worked the restricted space intelligently, working well off his jab before slipping his foe in a methodical display.
On occasions Singleton’s hands dropped, allowing Woodhouse to land numerous blows down the middle, and it was telling as the new champion stood bloodied, cut under both eyes, in the finale of the contest. But Singleton withstood everything the 32-year-old Yorkshireman had to offer.
Judge Phil Edwards scored the “War of the Rose” showdown 96-94 in Singleton’s favour, Dave Parris opted for the reverse when backing Woodhouse while Steve Gray’s deciding card read 96-95 to Singleton. A last round point deduction for the former professional footballer, after hitting on the break, proved pivotal and consequently cost him his crown and possibly career.
Despite talk of a rematch, Woodhouse posted on social networking site Twitter: “Like to thank everybody for the support over the last six years. I’ve been part of a great sport, thank you. Also thanks to the boxing world for showing me love.
“I’ve loved your sport my whole life and I hope I’ve given you some good nights. Even though I never reached my goal of British champion I gave it my all, no regrets, Adios boxing. Congrats to @shaynethepain. I hope you have success and great things in your career.”
Read Friday’s Burnley Express and Nelson Leader for a full match report.