Tommy Ward will not take to the ring again until he fights for the British title.
The unbeaten super-bantamweight from West Rainton hopes to challenge for Jazza Dickens’ belt in the new year.
And his farewell appearance of 2016 therefore proved something special at Ashington Leisure Centre.
Ward claimed win number 19 of his career, impressively stopping Norbert Kalucza before in round four with a terrific left hook to the body.
The Hungarian was no hired dummy designed to make the 22-year-old look good.
Kalucza is a former Olympian with a fine pro record and he turned up meaning business.
But Ward turned on the style with exquisite boxing skills.
His jab was perfect, and speed dazzling, the left-left-right combinations giving Kalucza real trouble.
Ward’s combinations scored at will and just when you thought he had eased his foot off the accelerator, bang, a perfectly-executed left hook to the body sent Kalucza to the canvas.
It left the Eastern European doubled up in agony – and Ward had the second stoppage win of his career.
Promoter Dave Garside said: “For me, that was his best performance to date. Tommy completely dismantled him.
“His speed, timing and combinations were brilliant. “That will be it now for Tommy. Next time it will be for the British title.”