Boxing: Cut eye stops Lewis from competing for Euro title

Lewis Taylor after his win over Grant Cunningham 04/07/15
Lewis Taylor after his win over Grant Cunningham 04/07/15

Lewis Taylor’s English middleweight championship victory last month came at a price.

The Dronfield boxer won the esteemed belt against Staffordshire’s Grant Cunningham at the Magna Centre after the bout was halted following a doctor’s inspection of a cut above the 25-year-old’s right eye, caused by an accidental head clash in the fifth. The judging went in Taylor’s favour and he had hoped to be now moving on to bigger and better titles.

In fact, promoter Dennis Hobson had mooted an October 10 date for European and Commonwealth title shot against unbeaten Tommy Langford, 26, the IBF Inter-Continental champion from Birmingham. “I was offered that fight and I would love to take it, but my eye is still red and raw” said Taylor.

“If it is not right, then it would be pointless to rush into something like that.

“If you are fighting a kid of that quality you don’t want to stop for a cut. I had five stitches after the Cunningham fight and maybe I should have had more.

“I saw a doctor recently and he said I am still about six weeks away from sparring, so then it became completely clear that I couldn’t take the fight. I was gutted.”

Taylor (17+1+1) was elated after winning the title on July 4, the victory coming after losing in controversial circumstances to Eamonn O’Kane in Northern Ireland in May.

“I would like to have another fight with O’Kane, either in Sheffield or at a neutral location. I thought I beat him first time round. But he is fighting in New York soon, so I can’t see that happening.”

Being a champion attracts attention and Taylor says: “I have had people calling me out on Twitter and I see Rod Smith (also from Dronfield) said he wanted to fight me. We’ll sort out my next opponent when this eye has cleared up.”

Taylor, who admits to struggling with “the last six-eight pounds” to make weight, is currently being advised by Woodlands gym nutrition expert Jon Hodgkinson.

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