No hitch for Mitch with a points win

VINNY MITCHELL and Billy Joe Saunders both protected their unbeaten records as they punched out points successes over durable opposition on the undercard of Frank Warren s show at York Hall, Bethnal Green, on Friday, WRITES LEN WHALEY. Mitchell outpointed

VINNY MITCHELL and Billy Joe Saunders both protected their unbeaten records as they punched out points successes over durable opposition on the undercard of Frank Warren's show at York Hall, Bethnal Green, on Friday, WRITES LEN WHALEY.

Mitchell outpointed East Ham rival Johnny Greaves to record his 11th straight pro win, while ex-Olympic boxer Saunders gained the verdict over game rival Alex Spitko from Derby.

However the pair, both trained by father and son team Jimmy and Mark Tibbs at Newham's TKO gym, were made to work for their latest successes.

Greaves the 40-bout, fight-anywhere campaigner has survived against some sharp-hitting rivals and took some of Mitchell's best blows without buckling.


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Vinny was backed by his usual family following including elder brother Kevin, also unbeaten and a leading world super-featherweight title contender, at ringside.

The supporting squad roared him into action as he pressed forward on to the attack, throwing his usual pressure punches mixed with more controlled shots.

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But Greaves, durable to the end, was still upright at the final bell although Mitchell had taken five of the six rounds on the scorecard of referee Ken Curtis.

After two wins earlier in the year, this victory was the 22-year-old prospect's second success in three weeks since moving gyms to train under the Tibbs duo.

For middleweight Billy Joe, it was a first distance fight after three inside the distance successes but strong rival Spitko (Derby) lasted until the end of the four-rounder that closed the York Hall show.

Saunders showed his impressive variety of shots and shook Spitko more than once, but the determined Derby fighter shook them off and came back for more.

Saunders' fourth pro success was underlined with a 40-36 winning points margin from the third man Dave Parris.

There was another Friday night points winner trained at the TKO gym.

'John' Wayne Hibbert made it three straight successes when he defeated tough Kevin McCauley (Dudley) by virtue of a points decision.

Tough McCauley traded solid shots in every round but Hibbert, backed by his enthusiastic supporters, was too strong and too aggressive as he chalked up a 40-36 victory on the scorecard of referee Dave Parris.

NATHAN Cleverly took the honours in the top of the bill clash with his eighth-round stoppage of former Olympic boxer Courtney Fry at York Hall.

Defending his British light-heavyweight title for the first time, the Welsh star had built up a lead over the hard-fought rounds before catching Fry with a series of punches towards the end of the eighth that forced the referee's intervention.

Fry won amateur honours, including a Commonwealth Games gold medal during his days as a Repton amateur star a decade ago, now at the age of 34 he must decide if he is to continue his stop-start pro campaign.

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