The moment outspoken Londoner, Ohara Davies was offered a career lifeline by Frank Warren, the paths of himself and Jack Catterall would cross in the near future. Another domestic feud, and another crossroads clash for one of British boxing’s favourite antagonist.
Catterall has been steered clear of bright lights under the guidance of Frank Warren, but with a noisy neighbour appearing on the block, Catterall is now lobbied under the spotlights. New territory indeed, but the Croydon man has been biding his time for an opportunity to dazzle for some time now. This new addition to Warren’s stable was sorely needed for Catterall to avoid seeing his career turn stale.
Catterall 22-0(12KO’s) is not the only one with much to prove on Saturday night. Davies was on a fine upward trajectory before he was humbled in 7 by the masterful Scotsman, Josh Taylor (L TKO 7). His subsequent win over Tom Farrell (W TKO 6) was arguably the best of his career, and ultimately his last under the Matchroom Boxing banner.
Ahmed Ibrahim (W PTS 6) settled him in, before Paul Kamanga (W KO 2) proved nothing more than cannon fodder for Davies to show off his power at Super Lightweight.
Meanwhile for the business-like Catterall it seems a lifetime ago since breakout wins over Nathan Brough (W TKO 2) and Thomas Stalker (W TKO 8) set his young career alight. That was in 2014, and since then, Catterall has honed his skills with the WBO Inter-Continental title around his waist.
He still managed to put aside challengers like Jarkko Putkonen (W UD 10), Joe Hughes (W UD 12) and Martin Gethin (W TKO 3). The latter sent his career back into the headlines, and six months later he dethroned the long standing British champion Tyrone Nurse (W UD 12).
Last time in the ring, it was Tyrone McKenna (W UD 10) who was ultimately outmatched, but considering the two knockdowns scored against him, McKenna performed beyond expectations to only narrowly lose on the scorecards.
The 25-year old has been found guilty of being a little one-paced in several fights in his career thus far. He has shown some explosiveness to settle fights inside the distance, but when boxing at range he does tend to become too predictable. Against a skilled, and very unorthodox operator like Davies, those tendencies could prove disastrous.
Despite the 26-year olds boasts, there was nothing to be ashamed of when he was outclassed by Taylor. On the whole he still fought well, but Taylor was too seasoned, too quick and ultimately too good in pretty much every department. But at the Leicester Arena Davies 18-1(14KO’s) is against an opponent that may not be able to punish his low hands and side-on boxing stance.
Catterall could do with denting Ohara’s confidence early, set the tempo and remind Davies that once again he is second best in the boxing department. But thus far there has not been enough evidence to suggest that Catterall can stamp his authority in such a way.
Therefore after Catterall edges the early stages with the sharper work, Davies will bring himself into the contest with sharp movement and eye-catching singles.
Davies is far from the finished article, but behind accurate and educated counter punches he can edge his way to a close decision win.