Undefeated WBA number one rated Jr. Bantamweight contender Andrew Moloney scored a hard-fought ninth round stoppage of a very “Game” Elton Dharry on Friday night at Margret Court Arena in Melbourne, Australia. The fight, which was to determine interim/regular champion status in the WBA’s Jr. Bantamweight ratings was largely controlled by Moloney’s jab and consistent body attack. As it appeared Moloney was on his way to a convincing stoppage however, Dharry responded and rocked Moloney with a short right uppercut in round five. Although he was badly staggered, Moloney was able to stay on his feet and survived the storm. By the middle rounds, Dharry’s right eye was swollen shut as a result of Moloney’s jabs and left hooks.
Even though Dharry did what he could to hang in there and stay in the fight, after several examinations by the ringside physician prior to the start of several rounds late in the fight, the bout was stopped shortly after the start of round nine after another consultation with the ringside physician. Official time of the stoppage was :01 of round nine. Andrew Moloney advances to 21-0, with 14 Knockouts. Elton Dharry falls to 24-6-1, with 14 Knockouts.
Also on this card:
In a bout for the WBA Oceania Bantamweight championship former world title challenger Jason Moloney retained his title by scoring a devastating second round knockout over Dixon Flores. Moloney dropped Flores in round one with an overhand right that landed on the top of the head. Moloney continued to pressure Flores and knocked him down for a second and final time with a flush left hook to the body that sent Flores down and wincing on the canvas. The fight was immediately stopped. Official time of the stoppage was 1:26 of round two. Jason Moloney advances to 20-1, with 17 Knockouts. Dixon Flores falls to 16-7-3, with 5 Knockouts.
In a Middleweight bout Tej Singh and Mitchell Whitelaw fought to a six round draw. Whitelaw was most effective when he was able to keep Singh at distance and use his reach and combination punching. As the fight progressed however, Singh was able to force the fight on the inside and appeared to be the fighter with the momentum down the stretch. Tej Singh advances to 15-4-3, with 8 Knockouts. Mitchell Whitelaw advances to 5-4-2, with 2 Knockouts.
A slugfest in the Heavyweight division between Australian Rugby and Football stars saw Paul Gallen of the National Rugby League fight to an entertaining six round majority draw with Australian Football League Hall of Famer Barry Hall. Gallen, who was undefeated in nine previous professional bouts and Hall, who was making his professional debut at forty-two years of age, engaged in a non-stop toe to toe battle over six rounds where neither was really able to gain the advantage. At the end of the fight, two official judges scored the fight a draw. Paul Gallen advances to 9-0-1 with 5 Knockouts. Barry Hall advances to 0-0-1, with 0 Knockouts.
Undefeated Middleweight Jesse White scored a six round unanimous decision over Paul Gould. In what was an entertaining bout, White was generally the sharper fighter landing combinations and using his movement. Gould however, did have some moments throughout and forced White to fight. Official scores were 60-55 (On all three scorecards) for White. Jesse White advances to 6-0, with 0 Knockouts. Paul Gould falls to 3-7, with 1 Knockout.
In a Cruiserweight bout that opened the evening Nick Midgley scored a first round knockout over Issac Slade. Nick Midgley advances to 6-1, with 4 Knockouts. Issac Slade falls to 2-6-2, with 2 Knockouts.
The exposure on an international level for the Australian Boxing scene has increased significantly by both the advent of digital streaming networks and the followings of fighters like the Moloney brothers, Jeff Horn, Michael Zerafa, and others. In terms of Andrew and Jason Moloney, this card represented another step as both look for opportunities at world championships in their respective divisions.
For Andrew Moloney, his victory over Elton Dharry more or less ensures him an opportunity to face current WBA Jr. Bantamweight world champion Khalid Yafai. As for Jason Moloney, the number three rated WBA Bantamweight contender could be a potential opponent for undefeated unified WBA/IBF world champion Naoya Inoue, who recently won the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) Bantamweight tournament by scoring a hard-fought decision win over IBF champion Nonito Donaire.
As 2020 is on the horizon, some of the best fights that could take place in the sport in the next year are in the 115lb. Jr. Bantamweight and 118lb. Bantamweight divisions. The Moloney brothers could very well be involved in those marquee fights.
“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”
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