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Rainham boxer Mullender crowned middleweight champion

PUBLISHED: 13:00 08 June 2017

Joe Mullender (left) and Lee Markham after their thrilling return at Brentwood (Pic: Len Whaley)

Joe Mullender (left) and Lee Markham after their thrilling return at Brentwood (Pic: Len Whaley)

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Rainham boxer Joe Mullender has been crowned the new English middleweight champion.

Mullender beat off former champion and club mate Lee Markham to earn revenge of the fighter for beating him last year at London’s 02 Arena.

Before he left the ring after a second bitter battle, Mullender congratulated Markham and anticipated a return to the ring for the pair to settle their rivalry.

“One win each there has to be a third meeting - let’s get it on,” said the new titleholder.

Once again the friendly rivals produced a torrid tussle of non-stop action throughout the ten rounds this time it was the aggression of Joe that swayed the judges his way.

His close range hooks and effective uppercuts repeatedly found their target but Markham took the shots and fired back with his own long range attacks.

At the end the judges were split - Ian John Lewis and Marcus McDonnell voted 97-93 and 97-94 for Mullender but Jeff Hinds scored 97-95 for Markham.

All three agreed the sporting rivals had produced another contest that is a candidate for a Fight of the Year award.

The new champion was quick to thank trainer Jamie Williams and his team at the RM7 Legends gym saying: “I did it for Jamie and everyone at the gym - they have stuck by me so this title is for them.”

Coach Williams added: “If there is one man who deserves to be a champion it’s Joe, after the way he has bounced back from his setbacks.”

Two other fighters who train alongside Markham at the Five Star gym, Boy Jones junior and Harley Benn were also winners at the Brentwood boxing club.

Jones took just 112 seconds to score his 13th win in 15 bouts dropping outgunned Latvian Andis Didzus four times before referee Jeff Hinds called a halt.

Hornchurch boxer Benn son of the Dark Destroyer Nigel scored his second win outpointing six foot two Wiltshire fighter Paul Cummings 38-37.

Benn said: “He came back well but I am still learning and working hard to improve.”

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