Isaac Macleod clinched his best victory of his career by extending his unbeaten run to nine bouts in Liverpool by beating Danny Craven.
The Sunderland boxer outpointed his Warrington opponent at the Echo Arena in Liverpool in the televised battle of the two undefeated welterweights.
It was a close and ferociously-fought contest, Macleod edging it 58-57 on the scorecard of referee, John Latham.
His victory not only protected his 100% record but was achieved in front of a national TV audience on the undercard of Callum Smith’s World Super Series super-middleweight championship clash with Erik Scogland.
It was a cracker from start to finish with both boxers scoring regularly to leave the outcome on a knife edge.
The early rounds were close fought. Macleod, despite being two years Craven’s junior, shaded the 24-year-old in terms of amateur pedigree and professional experience, but both were equals in terms of ambition and fire.
Macleod produced some tremendous work in the fourth, a sharp jab being followed by some belting right hands as he sent in a volley of head shots.
Craven responded with two good lefts, but the Wearsider forced him back on the ropes.
And while his rival landed a couple more nice shots, the volume came from the former European Junior gold medallist.
Macleod had suffered a cut to his right eye in the second but super work in the red corner from Liverpool coach, George Schofield, ensured it never caused him a problem.
The fifth was fought hammer and tongs, Macleod starting with some great punches to the head with Craven replying in kind to the body.
It was desperately hard to score as the boxers leaned against each other letting both hands go.
Craven made a good start in the last round and while Macleod briefly forced him back, the fighter chasing his fourth straight win had the better of the exchanges.
The ex-Sunderland ABC ace looked exhausted at the final bell, an indicator of the ferocity of a contest.
Craven’s corner were confident the nod was going to the blue corner, but Mr Latham was the sole judge and he scored it to Macleod by one point.
However, given how good this six-rounder was it could well play out again.