Commonwealth Games 2002
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Boxing Thursday, 1 August, 2002, 15:16 GMT 16:16 UK
Dolan beats unlucky Evans
Darren Barker celebrates in the ring
Barker celebrates winning without throwing a punch

A bloody nose ended Kevin Evans' hopes of fulfilling a life-long goal of winning super-heavyweight gold at the Commonwealth Games.

Evans was forced to retire in the first round of his semi-final against England's David Dolan after the referee decided the flow of blood was too severe.

open quote
My nose has bled in all my fights so far and I have been allowed tocarry on
end quote
Kevin Evans

The Welsh champion had broken his nose at the recent British Amateur Championships in Northern Ireland, and the blood began to appear after some early thunderous exchanges.

Victory for 22-year-old Dolan capped a superb afternoon session for English boxers on semi-final day here at the Manchester Evening News Arena.

Light welterweight Darren Barker and light middleweight Paul Smith had earlier booked their places in Saturday's gold medal deciders.

Evans' enforced stoppage was particularly frustrating for the 25-year-old since he had established an early 7-2 point lead.

Wales' only hope for gold now rests on the shoulders of lightweight Jamie Arthur.

The Cwmbran boxer beat Botswana's Gilbert Khunwane to set up a final against the impressive Zambian Dennis Zimba.

"I'm absolutely ecstatic," said Arthur. "I'll give all I've got on Saturday to see if I can do it for Wales."

Tall Canadian David Cadieux now stands between Dolan and the prestigious Commonwealth title.

Cadieux was too powerful and quick for Gozie Dijeh of Nigeria to handle as he secured a 30-18 points verdict.

In one of the more bizarre moments of the Games, England's light-welterweight Darren Barker won his semi-final without needing to throw a single punch.

His opponent, Davidson Emenogu of Nigeria was forced to withdraw after he had apparently broken a foot during a recreational game of football at the athlete's village.

Darren Barker waits for the bell to ring
Barker prepares for his non-fight
Barker still had to enter the ring to confirm the victory and received generous applause of the crowd as he left the arena.

Emenogu nevertheless collects a bronze, as do all the semi-final losers.

Mohammed Kayongo of Uganda stands between Barker and gold in Saturday's final.

Barker's England team-mate, light-middleweight Paul Smith, certainly raised the noise level at the arena with a mixture of fierce body and head shots against Scotland's Craig McKewn.

Smith was lucky to even be in the semis after he benefited from a contentious decision in the previous round.

But the 19-year-old from Liverpool made the most of his good fortune to snatch a 20-19 decision to progress to a gold medal bout against the impressive Canadian Jean Thenistor Pascal.

In the first bout of the day, Lechedzani Luza gained a 34-23 decision over Nzimeni Msutu.

With both fighters intent on attacking on the front foot, the sparse crowd were treated to almost constant uncompromising toe-to-toe exchanges.

But Luza, from Botswana, always looked in control and comfortably found the crucial scoring punches when he needed to.

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I just felt really stupid being out there
end quote
Darren Barker

The second semi-final between Zambia's Kennedy Kanyanta and Canada's Sebastien Gauthier was a much tighter affair altogether.

With the score tied at 20 points all going into the fourth and final round, Kanyanta produced a masterful display to land a further 14 scoring punches to book his place in the fight for gold.

The featherweight final will be between India's Som Pun Bahadur and Pakistan's Haider Ali.

Southpaw Bahadur cruised through his bout against Namibia's Veikko Josua. The referee stopped proceedings in the third after Josua had taken too much punishment of the official's liking.

Ali made the most of his reach advantage to dictate the bout against Canada's Benoit Gaudet for a 16-7 win.

Light-heavyweight Joseph Lubega stopped Ben McEachran of Australia in the second round and will fight Nigeria's Jegbefumere Bone Albert for gold.

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