Sheffield Arena's knockout merchant '“ and a video rendition of Sweet Caroline

Anthony Tomlinson almost stole the show on the Kell Brook undercard with his fifth round demolition of experienced former Dutch national champion Innocent Anyanwu.

Monday, 10th December 2018, 9:09 am
Updated Monday, 10th December 2018, 9:15 am
Anthony Tomlinson in action at the Arena. Picture By Dave Thompson

The Sheffield-born welterweight's powerful finish underlined the growing reputation of a fighter who has come from nowhere.

Tomlinson, now living near his trainer Stefy Bull's gym in Doncaster, only turned professional last year after a short amateur career of 15 outings.

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Now he has nine straight wins and is penciled in to defend his Central Area Welterweight Title at the Magna Centre, Rotherham on March 2 against an unbeaten rival. He has his eyes on the English title later in 2019.

Tomlinson, 27, said: "A lot of people complimented me on that performance - our game plan was carried out well. We knew he'd try and come underneath but I kept my distance,  stabbed him with some long shots and then cut off the rink, used single shots to stop him moving about, knowing when to let my back hand go. The upper cut got him out of there."

Anyanwu had only been stopped six times in a previous career of 66 fights.

"He might be coming to the end of his career but to stop him on such a big stage was great. I think I am getting better with every fight, going up the levels and am starting to stamp my name on the division' said Tomlinson

Anthony Tomlinson in action at the Arena. Picture By Dave Thompson

He has now stopped four out of his last six opponents. "They are getting laid out" he says.

"Kell has told me I am a work in progress but I have got a lot of the attributes needed. I know I have lots to learn but we are going step by step."

Brook got mixed reviews for his win over Michael Zerafa.

But Tomlinson said: "I thought Kell did what he needed to do.

"The kid he was fighting was decent - everybody thought it would be a walk in the park but he got the win and that's what matters. It doesn't always matter how you do it.