Any hopes Ross Burkinshaw could one day win a fairytale world title and join Kell Brook as one of Sheffield’s elite were dashed on Saturday.
All the fight had been punched out of bantamweight Burkinshaw, aged 28, by South African Klaas Mboyane and he retired after four rounds at Rotherham’s Magna centre citing an elbow injury.
Beighton’s Burkinshaw went through a horror show in the fourth round when his southpaw opponent poured out the punches and knocked the home crowd deathly silent.
Mboyane looked particularly effective when going to the body. A stubborn Burkinshaw ignored the pleas of trainer Ryan Rhodes to get out of the way of danger and became embroiled in a war.
It was a war the home man could not win. He had been neglecting throwing the jab and it was explained afterwards that an old sparring injury had resurfaced and was impacting on him heavily.
Carrying on for another eight rounds without that weapon would surely have left Burkinshaw in danger of getting seriously hurt.
Burkinshaw’s career had been revived following a surprise Commonwealth title win against Doncaster’s Jason Cunningham last year.
He then followed it up by winning the WBO European title against Benjamin Smoes in February but the WBO Inter-Continental proved to be too big an ask.
The defeat now leaves Burkinshaw pondering his options, with retirement seen as a possibility although promoter Dennis Hobson stressed that he feels his man can rebuild again.
Barnsley’s Josh Wale, 27, debuted at featherweight and scored a narrow points win against Welsh champion Dai Davies in a Commonwealth title eliminator.
Wale edged the ten-rounder 96-95 and survived an early cut scare to do so.
Blood poured from Wale’s left eye throughout the contest but he battled through to earn the decision from referee John Latham.
Merthyr Tydfil scrapper Davies, who once fought Doncaster world champion Jamie McDonnell to a draw, counter-punched effectively early on but was wobbled by a succession of hooks in the fifth round.
Wale, who was moving up a division following a defeat for the British super-bantamweight title earlier this year, always looked the stronger man when the two exchanged blows.
Former ABA champion Waleed Din, 22, continued to impress on the undercard that featured three Sheffield fighters.
Of the trio it was Din who had the easiest night’s work.
Hungarian opponent Tibor Nadar came into the flyweight contest unbeaten in three and with a considerable height advantage.
But by the end of the first round the visitor had been put down twice and was counted out after the bell had sounded.
The super-quick Din is now 7-0 with five stoppages.
Ingle-trained bantamweight Kyle Yousaf, 21, earned his first stoppage as a professional and is now four unbeaten.
The ‘Golden Kid’ was cornered by John Ingle and showed some flashy moves associated with their famed gym.
A right hand to the ear did the major damage and forced the second-round stoppage of Georgian Khvicha Gigolashvili.
Uzair Najib, 23, was held to a draw at super-bantamweight by the game Ian Halsall from St Helens. Referee Mark Lyson scored the contest 38-38.