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  Saturday, 15 July, 2000, 21:55 GMT 22:55 UK
Stone stops brave McCreesh
Tom Johnson and Scott Harrison
'Boom Boom' Johnson was unable to hurt Harrison
Bristol's Adrian Stone stopped Geoff McCreesh in an explosive IBO light-middleweight title fight at the London Arena on Saturday.

Fighting on the Lewis-Botha undercard, the 30-year-old McCreesh was knocked down twice in round two but showed courage to take the fight to his 28-year-old opponent, before the referee intervened in round six.

It was another excellent performance from the flamboyant Stone, who has spent most of his career to date in the US.

Without a fight in over a year, McCreesh, the former British welterweight champion from Bracknell, looked rusty and was in trouble early as Stone pressed forward.

Adrian Stone and Geoff McCreesh
Stone was too good for the game McCreesh
A left hook floored McCreesh in the second, and moments later a combination put the challenger down on one knee for the mandatory eight count.

But McCreesh regained his senses and fought back gamely.

In the fifth round Stone opened a nasty gash in the corner of his opponent's left eye, and in round six Stone knocked McCreesh down for the third time.

When McCreesh was rocked shortly afterwards by a hard left, the referee had seen enough, and the challenger was led back to his corner.

Boom Boom busted

In the previous contest, Glasgow's Scott Harrison retained his IBO intercontinental featherweight crown by outpointing the former world champion Tom 'Boom Boom' Johnson.

The 22-year-old Harrison boxed cautiously to spoil Johnson's 36th birthday celebrations.

The American, who lost his IBF title to Naseem Hamed at the same venue three years ago, went down 117-113, 119-111, 119-109, on the judges' cards.

Harrison, who improved his record to 11 wins from 12 fights, dictated the pace of the contest, as Johnson seemed content to stay back and score points through precision rather than power.

With only three stoppage wins to Harrison's name and Johnson's dependable chin - only Hamed has stopped the American inside the distance in 58 fights - a 12-round duel was always likely.

Harrison, however, could perhaps have added to his three stoppages if he had boxed more aggressively, as the years appear to have taken their toll on Johnson.

Bruising encounter

In the evening's first contest, Castleford's Noel Wilders beat former European champion Paul Lloyd over 12 bloody rounds to improve his record to 19-0 and retain his IBO bantamweight title.

Despite a badly cut eye, Wilders outboxed Lloyd to win a gruelling 119-109, 115-113, 118-110 points verdict.

Lloyd ended the fight badly bloodied but never took a backward step as he sought to plough through his opponent's defences.

The Ellesmere Port man tired in the closing rounds but, with Wilders' eye spurting blood again, gamely refused to give up.

See also:

15 Jul 00 | Lewis in London
11 Jul 00 | Lewis in London
14 Jul 00 | Lewis in London
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