Saturday 23rd July in West Virginia, USA, Washington based rising star Dustin Echard 17(13)-3(2) faced Blake Mansfield 7(4)-4(1) from Cary, North Carolina in what was the first WBF sanctioned Silver International Championship since its re-establishment in the United States earlier this year.
Scheduled for 8 rounds, the fight followed most Championship bout blueprints with both challengers feeling each other out in the early rounds. In a seesawing encounter as the bell sounded ending the 6th round, Mansfield was slightly behind on all 3 Judges score cards and needed something special to overcome the more experienced Echard, who had landed the cleaner punches throughout most of the fight.
The start of the 7th round saw Mansfield step it up a gear with aggression and work rate early, possibly sensing he was behind on the cards, but Echard was equal to the task and with a minute to go in the round, Echard landed a peach of an uppercut which floored Mansfield and to his credit, the tough as nails challenger from North Carolina was up quickly to receive his 8 Count but looked in trouble.
Echard sensed that he had his man rattled, and as he had in previous fights during his career, saw blood in the water and immediately went to work with a flurry of combinations. With Mansfield clearly in trouble and unable to return fire, Referee Matt Jones had seen enough and at 2 minutes 25 seconds of the 7th round, called a halt to proceedings crowning Dustin Echard the new WBF Silver International Light Heavyweight Champ. Note – West Virginian Regional Light Heavyweight Title was also at stake
Supervisor – Mr Rob Fletcher (USA)
Official Result – Dustin Echard defeats Blake Mansfield TKO (7 of 8)
(vacant WBF Silver International Light Heavyweight Title)