Harry Pratt

Murray beats Blackwell to remain unbeaten

Middleweight prospect Martin Murray, ranked No. 4 by the WBA, remained unbeaten when he stopped Nick Blackwell after five rounds on Saturday to add the British title to his Commonwealth crown.

Murray (23-0, 10 knockouts) ultimately proved far too powerful for youngster Blackwell, who failed to come out for the sixth round.

At 20, Wiltshire’s Blackwell (8-1, 2 KOs) was bidding to become the youngest British champion since Ryan Rhodes in 1996, and he began brightly.

But by the third round, Murray, who is managed by Ricky Hatton, had assumed total control, the huge gulf in class and experience becoming increasingly obvious at the Robin Park  in CentreLancashire.

Murray is from St. Helens.

On the undercard, British lightweight holder Anthony Crolla (21-2, 9 KOs) made it eight wins in a row with a first-round knockout of Belgium's Herve de Luca (16-6-1, 7 KOs).

And former Olympian featherweight Joe Murray (11-0, 5 KOs), from Manchester, overcame durable Scot James Ancliff (11-14-2, 2 KOs), securing a unanimous decision over 12 rounds.

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