Matt Skelton took Danny Williams' Commonwealth heavyweight title with a 117-112 (twice), 115-114 decision in the headline fight of the Millennium Stadium's 'Once in a Millennium' boxing show on Saturday and says he now has the world title in his sights...
Welshman Enzo Maccarinelli pulled off the punch of the night with an upper-cut sending the never been stopped veteran Argentinean Marcelo Dominguez tumbling to the canvass to take the Interim WBO World Cruiserweight crown - and 2004 Olympic Silver Medallist Amir Khan completed a trio of 'not-to-be-missed' clashes on the 16-fight card when he followed Skelton's points victory over Williams and Maccarinelli's demolition job with an impressive stoppage of his own. Welsh boxing icon Joe Calzaghe has stated his ambition to fight at the Millennium Stadium before his career end - after pulling out of last weekend's show due to a hand injury - and post-fight talk from both Williams and Skelton hinted at a third rematch. Kahn too was impressed with the massive Millennium Stadium arena so the chances of a return visit to the Cardiff capital venue from Frank Warren's Sports Network boxing stable to top the 12,000 crowd attending this weekend are high. But Skelton first has his eyes on giant Russian Nikolai Valuev in a World title bout after moving into pole position should promoter Warren strike a deal with the Valuev camp. Warren will now resume talks aimed at landing a shot for the Bedford man who only came to boxing four years ago at the age of 35 after starting out as a kick-boxer. Skelton said: "Valuev is a big fellow but he is beatable and my attitude to life and the fight game is that we are all human and none or us are infallible. "Certainly I would have to train a certain way to beat him and I am not saying I would want to fight toe to toe with him. But I would study his fights and give myself a chance." Skelton stayed on his toes to clinch the verdict over Williams, whose decision to come in at a career-heaviest 20st 8lbs backfired badly as he was left looking a little flat-footed by his opponent. Still, in some ringsiders' eyes he landed enough clean blows to justify at the very least a rematch, and the 32-year-old insisted he is nowhere near ready to call time on his topsy-turvy career. Williams said: "I feel very down but I give Matt 100 per cent credit for his performance. It is always very difficult when I lose but I have recovered from it before and I will come back again. "After the final bell I knew Skelton had done enough, he moved well and used his feet well and changed his tactics, and I thought he definitely won the fight. "I expected him to go to war and with me being so heavy I was hoping for that, but he was very nimble while I felt sluggish. Although I felt fully fit I could not get my shots off."
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.