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Groves, Barker victorious in London

The Matchroom Boxing debut of super middleweight George Groves (17-0, 13 KOs) was a success as he blew away overmatched Dario Balmaceda (11-7-2, 7 KOs) on Saturday night at Wembley Arena in London. Groves dropped Balmaceda in round two with body shot and finished him in round three with two body shots and a right to the head. Time was :58. Groves, rated WBO #2, WBA #2, WBC #5 and IBF #7, will next fight on the May 25 Froch-Kessler card.

Former middleweight title challenger Darren Barker (25-1, 15 KOs) was victorious when Simone Rotolo (35-4, 15 KOs) didn’t come out after round four citing a hand injury. Barker, rated IBF #8 and WBO #10 at super middleweight, dropped Rotolo in round one and dominated the fight.

IBF #10 welterweight Lee Purdy (20-3-1, 13 KOs) scored a ninth round TKO over late sub Cosme Rivera (35-16-3, 24 KOs). Rivera was down in round one and the bout was eventually stopped in the ninth due to a cut suffered by Rivera. Time was :56.

Journeyman jr welterweight Danny Connor (8-5-1, 0 KOs) surprised Chris Evangelou (9-2, 1 KO) in a ten rounder, winning s 97-93 decision. Evangelou was down twice in the seventh.

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