Bradley Saunders disqualified for a headbutt on Stephen Smith's undercard
Last Updated: 21/09/15 10:54am
Bradley Saunders’ undefeated record vanished in disgraceful circumstances as he was disqualified for headbutting Renald Garrido.
The Durham fighter was 12-0 heading into his light-welterweight clash in Liverpool on Stephen Smith's undercard but his 13th fight ended in ignominy.
With his French opponent enjoying the better of things, he floored Saunders in the sixth round despite protests it should not have counted as a knockdown.
With his back against the wall, Saunders responded spitefully by blatantly driving his head into Garrido's in full view of the referee. Garrido spiralled, injured, into the corner and the referee immediately called the fight off.
Gary Buckland suffered a shock defeat to local lad Sean Dodd in a British lightweight title eliminator.
Dodd, from Birkenhead, boasted just a 9-1 record compared to his vastly more experienced opponent yet edged their 10-round scrap in the eyes of the referee who scored it 97-95 in his favour.
Perhaps more surprisingly, it was in the later rounds where Dodd enjoyed his best work by consistently outworking the Cardiff puncher, switching effectively between the head and body.
Dodd, a late-notice call-up to replace the injured British lightweight champion Scotty Cardle, is now in line to challenge for that title.
Earlier, Marcus Morrison announced himself on the Sky Sports screens with a stunning first-round win.
The Manchester youngster blew Michael Mora away with a big right and then moved in for the kill, only for the referee to step in and call a halt with the towel thrown in.
Morrison, who sparred with Paul Smith when he was preparing to do battle with Arthur Abraham, improved his record to 7-0 with no problem at all, possibly in his final fight as a light-middleweight.
He is expecting to move up to middleweight and, after making such light work of his live debut, Morrison felt it was the starting point of bigger and better things to come.
"This is just the start," Morrison told Sky Sports.
"This lad [Mora] was a decent opponent on paper, he's just gone six rounds with a European champion but that was it, it has started now."