Gentle Giant Towers falls to Aussie rival

Australia's Lucas Browne (left) in action against Sheffield's Richard Towers during the Final Eliminator Commonwealth Heavyweight Title fight at Hull Arena, Hull Pic: Richard Sellers/PA Wire.
Australia's Lucas Browne (left) in action against Sheffield's Richard Towers during the Final Eliminator Commonwealth Heavyweight Title fight at Hull Arena, Hull Pic: Richard Sellers/PA Wire.
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Richard Towers lost his unbeaten record and a crack at the Commonwealth title - after paying the price for being a “Gentle Giant.”

The 6ft 8ns Ingle fighter was almost punched out of the ring at Hull Arena by Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne in the title eliminator fifth round.

Towers, taller and more athletically built, was bent backwards over the top rope, helpless as his Aussie opponent rained combinations into his head.

It’s no disgrace to lose such an aggressive power-puncher. Yet Towers, 34, may wish he’d shown more than a cautious, pawing jab in the contest.

Browne (moving to won 18 (KO16) lost 0) also 34, from Perth, Australia was had been seeking a big head shot throughout. In the third round, he’d caught Towers with a short right which sent him staggering backwards across the ring.

It looked like the wide-eyed Yorkshireman’s legs had gone, but he hung on for another round and we hoped he’d composed himself as the fifth started.

But within 51 seconds the ref rightly waved the match off - perhaps leaving Towers with the question why he’d not risked exercising his right hand as well as his rival had.

The Hull Arena saw yet another game effort from Westfield lightweight Lee Connelly, up against Luke Campbell MBE, Olympic hero and home town favourite.

Unlike Towers, Campbell used his extra reach to ward off the courageous come-forward Connelly, limiting his offence. But the Sheffielder, eventually cut, outboxed and overpowered on the ropes, can congratulate himself for taking the southpaw to the fifth round.

Lightweight Curtis Woodhouse, trained by Ryan Rhodes, banished the memory of his Commonwealth KO title loss to Derry Mathews with a points win over Lewis van Poetsch.