Boxing: Dry eyes all round as McCall returns with a victory

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Oliver McCall, whose last appearance in the ring was in tears against Lennox Lewis, made a victorious return on Tuesday night with a technical knock-out of journeyman Bryan Yates in the eighth round of their bout in Nashville, Tennessee.

The former World Boxing Council world heavyweight champion stopped Yates after 1min 36sec of the eighth with a series of jabs, after Yates had lost his mouthpiece following a barrage of uppercuts and hooks to the head.

McCall, who seemed confident between rounds, despite yells from the crowd of "Crybaby", was suspended and fined $250,000 [pounds 155,000] for crying in the ring and refusing to fight Lewis in February in Las Vegas. After refusing to go to his corner twice and throwing only two punches in the fourth round, he was stopped by the referee, Mills Lane, 55 seconds into the fifth.

Another well-known name making a winning return on Tuesday night was Tim Witherspoon, who needed less than two minutes to knock out Levi Billups in his first bout in nearly a year, in Robinsonville, Mississippi.

The 39-year-old Witherspoon, who is trying to secure a bout for a third heavyweight title, was fighting for the first time since losing a unanimous 10-round decision to Ray Mercer last December.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission has told Mike Tyson that the door is open for his return to boxing, as long as he proves that he is fully rehabilitated. Tyson, suspended from fighting after being disqualified for biting Evander Holyfield's ears, said on Monday that he doubts the Commission will ever let him fight again.

But the Commission chairman, Elias Ghanem, said: "Mike Tyson has to prove to the commission, and the rest of the world, that he has rehabilitated himself. He has to admit to the terrible thing he did that night. He has to make a 180-degree turn."