Boxing: Dalton Smith set for Sheffield headline show after British title defence
The 26-year-old made the second successful defence of his British super lightweight crown with a deserved points victory over Billy Allington on Saturday night - a bout which took place on the undercard of Leigh Wood’s unsuccessful clash with Mauricio Lara. Commonwealth champion Sam Maxwell, who watched the fight from ringside after defeating Shaun Cooper on the Nottingham card, is pencilled in to face Smith at the Utilita Arena on April 29th.
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“It wasn’t my best performance,” Smith admitted afterwards. “But it’s another solid 12 (rounds) in the bag. Also big respect to my opponent Billy. He’s one tough guy.”
Despite being sent to the canvas in the eighth round, Allington became only the fourth person to take Smith the distance during his undefeated 14 fight professional career. The former Southern Area and English title-holder proved his bravery by recovering from that set-back, underlining why he has never been stopped since entering the paid ranks. But Smith, who finished the contest with a cut eye, was declared the victor by a wide margin on all three judges’ scorecards.
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Although he was not at his brutal best, the meeting with Allington should prove an invaluable experience for Smith as he continues his journey towards a world title challenge. Dominant throughout, Smith could have made his superiority pay by increasing the tempo of his work as the night progressed. But Allington’s own approach contributed towards what proved a cautious contest.
Smith insisted afterwards that he will be “ready to go” with “a bit of glue” in 10 week’s time but promoter Eddie Hearn sounded a note of caution, warning the facial damage his man suffered could force the schedule of his assignment against Maxwell to be revised.
Maxwell bounced back from failing in an attempt to claim the IBO version of the world title by overcoming Cooper, before saying: “It looks like April (against Smith). I’m back in the mix at the top level and am looking forward to fighting one of the best in the business.”