Doncaster's Reece Mould beaten by Leigh Wood in British featherweight title bout as Sheffield's Dalton Smith continues unbeaten start

REECE MOULD suffered the first defeat of his career as he fell short in his bid to become British featherweight champion against Leigh Wood at Wembley Arena.

KNOCKOUT: Doncaster's Reece Mould was beaten by Leigh Wood in the British featherweight title clash at Wembley Arena. Picture: Dave Thompson/Matchroom Boxing

The Doncaster-born fighter was knocked down twice in the ninth round, with the second knock down proving devastating as Mould was unable to get back up off the canvas.

Wood had taken control of the ninth with a sharp left hand that sent Mould to the mat but the Yorkshireman was able to get straight back to his feet. However, moments later, Nottingham-born Wood unleashed a flurry of punches with Mould against the ropes to claim victory.

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It was Mould's first contest in 16 months with the reigning English champion keen to add another belt to his collection.

TRADING BLOWS: Leigh Wood and Reece Mould. Picture: Dave Thompson/Matchroom Boxing

The 26-year-old's stable-mate Josh Warrington won the British title in 2014 and he was keenly cheering his training partner on from backstage.

Both fighters looked to measure each other in the early rounds with Wood's - who was in his 26th contest - experience shining through in the later rounds.

Mould looked strong in the third round but a right-hand uppercut from former WBO European champion Wood in round four rocked Mould who was sent tumbling to the canvas. The 26-year-old recovered well in the rounds that followed but Wood upped the intensity in the ninth round to inflict a first professional defeat - and knockout - on Mould.

Meanwhile, Sheffield's Dalton Smith made it seven professional wins from seven earlier in the evening with a dominant win over Ishmael Ellis.

STOPPAGE: For Sheffield's Dalton Smith. Picture: Dave Thompson/Matchroom Boxing.

Ellis was withdrawn by his corner following the conclusion of the third round after Smith had caught him with a number of strong right hands which had broken the skin and left Ellis with blood smeared on his face.

It was Smith's first 10-round contest but it never looked going the distance as the 24-year-old claimed the sixth stoppage of his pro career.

"I am very happy to produce that type of performance," said Smith.

"I feel like I am improving all the time and going at a good rate in my career and that is all I can do at the moment."

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