REES RETIRES AFTER BUCKLAND REVENGE

Gavin ‘The Rock’ Rees (38-4-1, 18KO) won the final fight of his career with a Split Decision victory over Gary ‘Dynamo’ Buckland (28-4, 9KO) on Saturday’s ‘The Second Coming’ show. The scorecards were 117-112, 117-113 and 113-116 in favour of Rees who capped off his career at Cardiff’s Motorpoint Arena, the venue of his historic WBA world light-welterweight title victory in 2007. The pair locked horns from the first bell, picking up from where they left off in February when Buckland was the victor via a Split Decision, and produced a contest that managed to better their original Fight of the Year contender. The atmosphere was a carnival throughout as observers realised it was a sight they wouldn’t see again, unbeatable Welsh boxing memories were being made. Initially, they met head on and exchanged savage body shots but as the contest progressed, Rees gave himself more room and his jab was the difference. With extra energy in his legs, Rees completed the 12 round distance better than he has ever done and appeared to hurt a brave Buckland in the final round. However, Buckland remained on his feet and pushed his fellow Welshman all the way. The fight was made at 9st 11lbs, 2lbs above the lightweight limit and Buckland’s competitiveness is all the more praiseworthy considering that he’s a natural super-featherweight. It was third time lucky for Rees who was eventually on the right end of a Split Decision, having lost consecutive Split Decisions to Anthony Crolla and Gary Buckland in his previous two contests. Both contests will go down in Welsh boxing folklore and Rees leaves the sport having won Prizefighter, British, European and world honours. More importantly, Rees is financially secure outside of boxing, having established his new pub and he’s agreed with trainer Gary Lockett that they’ll never work together again if Rees was ever to change his mind about retirement. Buckland will take a well earned break from boxing and plans to return as super-featherweight.

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