Lee Selby beats Rendall Munroe to add European title to his collection

Lee Selby beats Rendall Munroe to add European title to his collection

By Dewi Powell: Lee Selby (18-1, 7KO) made it as straight forward as it could be against Rendall Munroe (27-4-1, 11KO) by scoring a sixth round stoppage to defend his British title and add the European title to his collection.

Referee Ian John-Lewis stepped in to stop the contest half way through the round as Munroe was offering little in return and showing no sign of mounting a comeback. Just prior to the stoppage, Selby showboated by calling the referee in as he threw flurries that forced Munroe in to his shell and the neutral corner. Seconds later, Selby made the breakthrough Munroe’s guard and, apart from very infrequent single shots, there was barely anything coming back which promoted the referee to step in.

Up until then it had been relatively routine for Selby who demonstrated the defensive discipline that he has sometimes been missing of late. The Welshman controlled the pace at range right from the beginning and he didn’t seem to realise that he rocked Munroe with the final punch of round one, Selby threw a right hook as the bell sounded as as he turned away Munroe’s legs stiffened before he sat on his stool to gather himself.

The volume punching of Munroe was expected to give Selby something to think about but it played right in to his hands. Munroe walked on to everything Selby had and the Leicester man’s southpaw stance, of which Selby has only seen once in his paid career, bore little importance as the former bin man squared up on his approach. Selby had won the five rounds previous rounds by manipulating Munroe’s pressure to his advantage.

Almost every time Munroe manoeuvred Selby to the ropes, the Welshman would turn his opponent and lead him back to the centre of the ring where he utilised his speed to score most notably with jabs and left hooks to the body. Prior to the stoppage, it was the body shots which seemed to slow down Munroe the most, they had been the source of his last loss at super-bantamweight against Scott Quigg, and Selby’s size told – he looked a weight division above Munroe and he will against most featherweight opposition.

It was a world away from Selby’s last fight in Wales two years ago when the Barry boy attracted just a couple of hundred fans. This time, the fans sold out Cardiff’s Motorpoint Arena for Matchroom Sport’s ‘Reloaded’ show and it could be enough to convince Eddie Hearn to bring another show to Wales in May.

It’s been perfect progression in levels for Selby who is managed by Bristol’s Chris Sanigar, the Welshman has been gradually moved up and he’s passed every test at title level. In all, Selby has won the Welsh, Celtic, British, Commonwealth and European titles.

Last night, Selby defended his British title for the fourth time and no Welshman has done that since Howard Winestone in 1963 who later went on to win the WBC world featherweight title and Selby can now aim to follow in his footsteps with an eliminator being likely next.

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