James Tennyson (27-3, 23 KOs) showed he had the power to make some waves at lightweight as he stopped Gavin Gwynne (12-2, 2 KOs in the sixth round to claim the vacant British title at Matchroom’s HQ in Essex.

The Belfast man, who was stopped in a challenge for Tevin Farmer’s IBF super-featherweight title in 2018, was having his share of problems with Gwynne, who had gone 12 rounds with Joe Cordina for the same title 12 months ago, but Tennyson showed the power when needed to finish the job. 

Tennyson landed a right uppercut and a heavy right hook that forced Gwynn to take a knee. While referee Phil Edwards allowed him to continue, Tennyson backed him into the ropes and opened up, landing several crushing shots before Edwards stopped it at 2 mins 30 sec.

“Gavin is a real tough lad and I got him out of there early,” Tennyson said. “I’m happy with my performance. Shame there couldn’t be a crowd here to back it up.

“Tony (Dunlop, his trainer) told me to be patient, to move around and pick my shots, don’t just completely put it on him, because it could backfire.”

Tennyson started well, but after early success, Gwynne soaked up Tennyson’s shots and battled his way back in, picking off Tennyson from the outside. It looked like a long night was in store for Tennyson, but he adjusted well and picked his openings to force a finish.

Eddie Hearn, the promoter, suggested a fight with Jorge Linares could be in Tennyson’s future, as well as one with Francesco Patera, the European champion from Belgium. “They are the fights we want to see,” Hearn said.