VIDEO: Sheffield’s new boxing champion dedicates win to his family

To the winner, one word: Champion.

To the vanquished, two words: true heroism.

On a night when victorious fighter Liam Cameron received the compliments he richly deserved, you had to also recognise the eye-watering bravery of Sam Sheedy.

The Commonwealth middleweight champion lost his treasured belt in his first defence at Ponds Forge to a local rival. He was pounded to the head, but more significantly to the body. It was painful to watch, let alone experience.

But Sheedy took the punishment like a warrior, refused to give in when others would, and will learn from this experience and bounce back stronger. With admirable nobility, he admitted he was beaten “fair and square.”

The Pitsmoor puncher was on the canvas three times from cruel body shots in round four. His grimaces gave hope to Cameron that he’d be in for an early night.

Sam Sheedy v Liam Cameron in a Dennis Hobson Promotions fight at Ponds Forge in Sheffield. Liam Cameron takes the title. Picture: Chris Etchells

Sam Sheedy v Liam Cameron in a Dennis Hobson Promotions fight at Ponds Forge in Sheffield. Liam Cameron takes the title. Picture: Chris Etchells

In round seven Sheedy touched down again from a similar onslaught; and that was followed by a right to the face which had his eyes spinning.

Cameron, 26, accused of being lazy before Friday’s fight, ruthlessly finished him off in the eighth.

Later, he revealed he had cried four times on the day of the fight - such was his desperation to win the belt for his family.

His Dad had sent him a picture of Liam’s daughter India with the message: “This is who you have got to do it for.” The motivation worked.

Sam Sheedy - stopped by the referee. Picture: Chris Etchells

Sam Sheedy - stopped by the referee. Picture: Chris Etchells

Cameron rolled back the years to the time he was senior ABA champion, boxing with authority, intelligence and power.

Manor Park’s new champion said he’d been surprised that his body shouts had such an effect. Yet, conversely, he couldn’t believe Sheedy could continue to fight on after such savagery. Clutching the belt he said: “This will go down in history for me, this.”

Cameron, who had looked like an old man at the weigh-in where he came in two pounds under the limit, had shocked a lot of people, including Sheedy’s trainer Glyn Rhodes, who admitted: “I never thought Liam had that in him. I take my hat off to him.”

Sheedy, 29, who was said by promoter Dennis Hobson to have had a slightly inferior preparation, had never been at the races.

On Saturday morning, after a check-up at hospital, he posted on social media: “Good morning. I’m fine. Liam is Champ. Hope you all had a great night. Sorry I couldn’t retain my title and also congratulations to the new king sometimes I beat people up, sometimes I get beat up. That’s boxing baby.”

On the undercard unbeaten Eckington cruiserweight Joss Paul stopped Ukranian Florians Strupits (3 49 3) in the third round, the visitor suffering a cut over his left eye.

Sheffield bantamweight pair Tommy Frank scored his fifth straight win, this time over city-based Anwar Alfadli (2 69 5.)

Sheffield-based light heavyweight and MMA expert Danny Tombs (7 1 2) didn’t polish off Hungarian Norbert Szekeres (18 60 3) with as much aplomb as he’d have wanted, winning on points.

Jersey welterweight Daniel Kennedy (5 0 0) beat Hyde’s Mike Castell (0 4 0.)