Ted Cheeseman edges out Sam Eggington in entertaining Matchroom Boxing Fight Camp debut main event

Matchroom Boxing kicked off their Fight Camp series of events from the beautiful backyard of Matchroom Headquarters in Essex, England, on Saturday with a wild brawl between Ted Cheeseman and Sam Eggington for the IBF international super welterweight championship. Eggington gave as good as he got as the two men stood toe-to-toe for 12 rounds, but in the end, Cheeseman managed to do just enough to edge out the victory on the judges’ scorecards to capture the secondary title.

Eggington opened the fight fast, setting up a quick pace and trying to force Cheeseman to fight off his back foot. That’s not to say Cheeseman didn’t have his opening-round success as well, throwing some stiff jabs and mixing in crisp power punches in between the high-volume work of Eggington.

That work paid off when Cheeseman took Eggington’s legs in the final minute of the second round. Crisp overhand rights from Cheeseman buckled Eggington’s knees, but he smiled, moved to the ropes and weathered the follow-up storm from Cheeseman before moving forward again to fire back, landing a thudding left hook of his own as the round came to a close. 

Things settled into a pattern over the next handful of rounds, with Eggington trying to pressure, knowing no other way to fight, Cheeseman, however, did a fine job of riding out the flurries before exploding with his own hard, clean combinations and hurting Eggington. But Eggington refused to back off, still trying to make something happen through sheer volume and will.

Where Eggington was doing sneaky work, keeping a consistent stream of work to the body of Cheeseman, trying to break him down for the later rounds should he be able to survive the power shots of Cheeseman over the middle stanzas. Eggington almost was not able to do that, getting stung badly again late in Round 8 as the battle of volume vs. power continued to trend slightly in Cheeseman’s direction despite the fight being a thriller and almost every round competitive.

Both men saw their offensive output dip in the later rounds, a product of the body work and high-output since the opening bell, but both also continued to battle in toe-to-toe exchanges. Cheeseman would pin Eggington against the ropes and let his hands go, only for Eggington to ride out the flurries before finding space to fire back with his own clean shots as the fight felt as thought it was tightening up on the scorecards. 

Eggington trapped Cheeseman against the ropes early in the final round before following him to the center of the ring and pouring on a major combination. Cheeseman pushed forward and fired back, but Eggington was the man who closed the fight with the stronger, work, rocking Cheeseman with wild, looping lefts and rights and buckling his legs.

After 12 rounds of action, the scorecards felt as though they could go either way, favoring Eggington’s relentless volume or Cheeseman’s slightly cleaner, heavier shots throughout the fight. In the end, the judges gave Cheeseman the fight via a narrow set of scorecards reading 116-113, 116-113 and 115-114.

“It was a good fight, no doubt,” a dejected Eggington said after the fight. “You just have to roll with the punches, that’s the way it is.” 

For Cheeseman, the fight saved his still young career after a 0-2-1 run over his three most recent fights.

“I’m a winner,” Cheeseman said following the victory. “I love winning. I put my heart and soul into this sport. … The thing was a bit of morale and confidence. I hadn’t had a win in nearly two years. … If I lost tonight, I would have retired.”

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