Ritchie, Akkawy, Lovett triumph Down Under

By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing

Former Australian middleweight champion Dwight Ritchie (16-1-0) outpointed Shay Brock (12-1-1) over ten rounds to capture the vacant IBF Youth title at the Melbourne Pavillion, Flemington, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on Friday. Ritchie controlled the action in most of the rounds to be awarded a unanimous decision. Ritchie, 25 years, captured the OPBF title in 2016 defeating Hikaru Nishida but lost the championship to Koki Tyson that same year in Osaka, Japan.

Unbeaten super middleweight Bilal Akkawy (16-0-1, 14 KOs) stopped Rogerio Damasco (16-8-1, 15 KOs) in round two of a scheduled eight round bout on Friday at Club Punchbowl, Sydney, NSW, Australia. Akkawy is scheduled to box again at this venue on February 24.

Globe-trotting light-heavyweight Steve Lovett (17-2, 13 KOs) outscored Steven Moxon (5-5, 4 KOs) over eight rounds by unanimous decision in the main event at the Hellenic Club, Canberra in the Australian Capital Territory, Australia on Friday. Lovett was based in the USA from 2013 to 2017 training under highly regarded Ronnie Shields. He was also trained by former IBF, WBA middleweight champion Daniel Geale for Friday’s Fight.

“To get the best out of them [Shields and Geale] is a great outcome,” Lovett said. “I trained alongside Daniel Geale for three or four years ago[earlier in my career]. I look up to him, he always gave me advice and I knew he was the right guy to approach on my return to Australia.”

Lovett’s return to Australia follows successive losses in the US to Craig Baker [17-2] and Lionell Thompson [19-4] which left his record at 14-2, including eight victories in bouts in the USA.

“It’s good to come back here and get some fights,” Lovett said. “Just to get the mind right and get back into fighting. Lost my last fights in the US but everything happens for a reason.”

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