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Marley laid low in title shot

BOXING: Accidental low blow leads to ABA Senior exit for Thames Valley fighter

MARLEY Churcher's Elite ABA title chances ended in painful confusion when he was put out by Dale Youth's Deion Jumah in Saturday's Southern Area semi-final at Dagenham.

The Thames Valley ABC fighter took a low blow in the third round, and was left reeling by the accidental clash.

After backing off in pain, he was deemed to have been knocked out by the referee, without going to the floor.

It was a decision that prompted protests from his corner, although there were no complaints about the overall decision after Jumah had led throughout.

“Jumah deserved it,” said coach Paul Cooke. “He was far better on the day and Marley just seemed to freeze.

“He moved well enough, but Marley just didn't counter and although Jumah was not a hard puncher, he took his shots and Marley didn't hit him on the move.”

Jumah had surged into a 7-1 lead after the opening round and although Churcher did more in the second, he was still 7-14 going into the final round and in need of a stoppage to win through.

But he got fed back onto the ropes, where Jumah caught him with the accidental low blow that did the damage.

“If it was a low blow, he should have been disqualified,” said Cooke. “But the referee's decision was that it was a knock-out because he had stepped down and back.

“I protested to the official, but he just didn't seem to want to know and I think they wanted Jumah to go through.

“To be fair though, he fully deserved to win.”

However, Churcher's ‘knock-out- has another result in that it now rules him out of his own club's show at Thatcham FC next Friday, although it des lave him free to undergo the shoulder treatment he requires.

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