15/04/2024

Paul Gallen watches on as opponent Darcy Lussick rises from the canvas - Photo: No Limit Boxing/Facebook

Night two of No Limit Boxing's Xmas Bash saw Paul Gallen return to the winners' circle, while young talents, Harry Garside and Sam Goodman also took to the ring.

On a night full of bouts between the biggest stars of Rugby League, Paul Gallen (12-1-1, 7 KOs) once again stood above his peers, rallying to secure a third-round TKO over fellow NRL convert Darcy Lussick (1-1, 1 KO).

Headlining the second night of No Limit Boxing’s ‘Xmas Bash’ event, the pair showed their mettle, wearing the best each other had to offer across three hard-hitting rounds.

From the outset, Lussick bent the rules to their most flexible point, clinching Gallen and landing uppercuts while holding the former New South Wales captain’s neck. Despite repeated warnings, the rough tactics continued until the bell to end the round.

The second stanza saw a reversal of fortunes, however, as Gallen weathered a wild storm. Catching Lussick in the midst of a heavy combination, the 40-year-old landed a trademark uppercut that changed the course of the contest.

Now capitalising on a fatigued opponent, Gallen increased his aggression to score a knockdown with a similar punch late in the round.

Bravely, Lussick returned to action in the third, though a much fresher opponent awaited him. Sensing such exhaustion, the ex-Cronulla Shark continued to punch until referee Les Fear called a stop to proceedings.

With the result, Gallen walks away with the twelfth win of his career and $20 000 richer, on the back of the ‘knockout of the night’ bonus offered by promoter George Rose.

In the remaining matchups between rugby league players, Joey Leilua, Justin Hodges, Taylan May, and Tavita Vaoga all emerged victorious in their four-round bouts.

In the co-main event, Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Harry Garside emerged victorious in his professional debut, scoring a first-round TKO of Sachin Mudaliar (9-2, 1 KO), albeit in controversial terms.

Having worn the best punches of his Fijian foe, the decorated Olympian trapped his opponent against the ropes and began to attack with a versatile flurry. Most notably, a series of savage right-hand rips to the body landed flush in the barrage.

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Despite the compromised position, Mudaliar seemed in control of the situation. Although he had not been able to throw punches himself, his defensive movements appeared sound and intelligent.

Yet, it was the opinion of referee Kevin Hogan that the bout be stopped, much to the surprise of a majority of onlookers.

Controversy aside, the win is a positive start to Garside’s professional career and ends his unforgettable 2021 on a high note.

Earlier in the night, 23-year-old Sam Goodman (10-0, 6 KOs) kept his undefeated record intact with a sixth-round TKO victory over Filipino Richie Mepranum (36-9-1, 11 KOs).

Tested early by the awkward movements of his southpaw opponent, Goodman adjusted well after the second round. Fully aware of Mepranum’s counter left punches, the Wollongong product established mid-range distance and began repeatedly trapping his opponent against the ropes.

Seemingly down on the scorecards and wearing a barrage of punches, an uncanny right arm injury rendered Mepranum unable to continue. After mistiming a jab that caught the elbow of Goodman, the former World title challenger could not answer the referee’s count.

In triumph, the elated Australian passed his toughest professional test to date, claiming the WBO Oriental Super Bantamweight title in the process. As 2022 approaches, Goodman will undoubtedly have his eyes set on climbing the rankings of the governing body.

For full results from night two of No Limit Boxing’s Xmas Bash, click here.

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