Lewis Ritson dropped three times in stunning stoppage loss to Jeremias Ponce

ritson-ponce-matchroom-ftr Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

Lewis Ritson’s world title dream, and possibly his career, are in tatters following a heartbreaking stoppage against the brilliant Jeremias Ponce.

The Argentinian entered the ring a significant underdog but he demonstrated early on he was more than a match for Ritson as he becomes the mandatory challenger for Josh Taylor’s IBF super lightweight belt. 

From the first bell, Ponce was in Ritson’s face and he set a frightening pace that seemed impossible to maintain. Ritson was hurt with a body shot in round one but he did grow into the fight as it progressed, despite the fact that he was losing rounds purely on work rate. 

After the halfway mark, where Ponce appeared to hold a handy lead, the visitor increased his attacks and Ritson was visibly hurt on more than one occasion as he kept retreating to the ropes for refuge. At the end of round nine, his father and trainer, Dave Ritson, warned his son that he was only giving him one more round but Ponce wouldn’t even allow him that. 

A sickening body shot at the start of the tenth session floored Ritson, which prompted his corner to throw in towel. Incredibly, referee Steve Gray dismissed the gesture and let the action continue but after more punishment from Ponce, assaults that dropped Ritson twice more, Gray finally saw sense and stopped the action. 

Ponce can now look forward to a world title shot, and based on this performance, it’s a reward that is fully deserved. The 140-pound division is crying out for characters and Ponce can be an interesting addition to the mix.  

For a full recap of a dramatic night in Newcastle, please read below.



Ponce's night

Brutal action in round ten. Ritson's corner is furious with Gray. The night belongs to Jeremias Ponce, though, who registers the best win of his career. 

Round Ten: Ritson vs. Ponce. It's all over.

Ritson goes down. The towel comes in and Steve Gray ignores it, so Ponce drops him another two times. Finally the fight is stopped. 

Round Nine: Ritson vs. Ponce

Ritson looks like a broken man. Will his corner or referee show compassion? This is now a hammering. Ponce is non-stop. He's miles ahead and Ritson needs a miracle. 10-9 Ponce

Round Eight: Ritson vs. Ponce

This is turning into a one-sided mauling. Ritson is backing off and that brings more attacks from Ponce. The end of this fight could be very close. 10-9 Ponce. 

Round Seven: Ritson vs. Ponce

Identical to so many earlier rounds. Ponce setting a fast pace and throwing punches whenever he's close. Ritson needs a massive turnaround. This fight is falling away from him. 10-9 Ponce,

Round Six: Ritson vs. Ponce

Ponce has a disturbing will to win. He's ahead largely on workrate. He's swarming over Ritson and not giving him any opportunities to work. Ritson needs to find something. 10-9 Ponce. 

Round Five: Ritson vs. Ponce

Is Ponce slowing down? He still does enough to win the round thanks to an excellent last 30 seconds but there's an obvious drop in his output. Could Ritson be waiting to take over in second half? 10-9 Ponce.

Round Four: Ritson vs. Ponce

A better round for Ritson who scores well with his jab. There's plenty of work from Ponce but Ritson seems to have settled down and is the more relaxed fighter at this point. 10-9 Ritson. 

Round Three: Ritson vs Ponce

The punches are coming in from all angles from Ponce but his wild style is effective. Ritson is trying to fire back but more attacks are coming from the Argentinian. 10-9 Ponce. 

Round Two: Ritson vs. Ponce

All action again from both men. Ponce once again the busier though. 10-9 Ponce. 

Round One: Ritson vs. Ponce

Ritson is hurt from a body shot in the opening session. It's a fast start from both men but Ponce was lively when he momentarily stunned Ritson. Those extra assaults give him the round. 10-9 Ponce. 

Lewis Ritson and Jeremias Ponce are in the ring

We're seconds away from the first bell. Who will get a shot at the IBF super lightweight title? Lewis Ritson or Jeremias Ponce? 

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