Title bid hit by opponent’s injury

Freestyle Combat Academy kickboxer Craig Douglin stands in his corner ready for action
Freestyle Combat Academy kickboxer Craig Douglin stands in his corner ready for action

Craig Douglin’s bid for a British kickboxing title was thwarted by an injury to his opponent.

Bexhill-based Douglin was well on top in his WRSA Kickboxing British title fight against champion Paul Mitchelson when the latter sustained a broken ankle in round two.

As the bout had not gone into the third round, it had to be called a no contest - much to the disappointment of the travelling supporters, who at the time were unaware of the severity of the injury.

The first round had started at a good pace with Mitchelson - competing in his home town of Burton on Trent - attempting to use his legs to counter Douglin’s boxing.

Freestyle Combat Academy ace Douglin soon found his rhythm, though, and made his punches count, clearly marking Mitchelson’s face. Late in the opening round, Douglin unleashed an unstoppable overhand right punch, dropping the champion to the canvas.

Mitchelson was up on eight, but was clearly dazed. With Douglin seemingly ready to finish him, the bell for the end of the round sounded, to the relief of the champion and his corner.

Douglin went straight after Mitchelson in the second round, backing him into the corner and unloading a flurry of punches. However, just as Douglin was about to finish him off, Mitchelson signalled to the referee, who discovered the injury.

FCA chief instructor Matt Braybrook said: “We are really gutted for Craig, who trained so hard for this fight. All at FCA wish Paul Mitchelson a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him back in the ring soon. I would like to thank the very loyal and vocal FCA supporters who travelled to Burton for the fight - they certainly made their presence felt.”