Boxing: David Price is left stunned by early clip around the ear


David Price's world – and perhaps his world heavyweight title ambitions – came crashing down in the Liverpool Echo Arena last night when the previously undefeated British champion was sensationally beaten in two rounds by American veteran Tony Thompson.

Price, hailed as a potential contender for sport's biggest prize, now faces an uncertain future after being caught with a right-hand punch that stunned not only himself but the crowd in his home town.

He was upended after just two minutes 17 seconds of the second round by the 41-year old southpaw security guard from Washington DC, unfortunately answering the question we had all pondered: could he take it on the chin?

Well, it wasn't exactly his chin but the side of his head, almost behind his ear. The blow sent him reeling backwards and he almost turned a somersault on the floor. He managed to rise groggily but his senses were still scrambled and his legs made of rubber as referee Steve Gray wisely called a halt.

The last time the 29-year-old had been anywhere near such a parlous plight was in the semi-final of the Beijing Olympics when he was stopped, hurt and dazed, having to settle for a bronze medal against the Italian Roberto Cammarelle.Since then the 6ft 8in Scouser had won 15 pro bouts in succession, inflicting the same devastating endings on most of his opponents as he suffered himself last night.

The 18st 10lb Thompson, who was thought to have seen better days even though he is the top-ranked American heavyweight, was last seen six months ago losing to Wladimir Klitschko for the second time in a world title fight. He was supposedly a massive underdog against Price but the latter's tactics were unusually tentative.

"It's the punch you don't see that hurts you the most, and I didn't see it coming," said Price. "What can I say? He caught me on the back of the neck. I've ended plenty of fights like that myself, now it's happened to me. I got caught and that's it. That's heavyweight boxing. One loss like that is not going to make me walk away."

It is a major set-back to Price's world title aspirations. Thompson will be offered a return but he intimated he will now go after Price's rival, Tyson Fury. "I'll be back," said Price. "This is just a blip."

In an ironic twist Audley Harrison, 41 like Thompson and bombed out in 82 seconds by Price in his last bout, won the Prize Fighter series for a second time after stopping New Yorker Derric Rossy in the second round of the final. Harrison, looking more athletic than he has in years, also beat Dane Claus Bertino and Belfast's Martin Rogan. Doubtless he will want a rematch with Price.

Life and Style
A monstrous idea? Body transplants might no longer be science fiction
Science An Italian neurosurgeon believes so - and it's not quite as implausible as it sounds, says Steve Connor
Demba Ba (right) celebrates after Besiktas win on penalties
footballThere was no happy return to the Ataturk Stadium, where the Reds famously won Champions League
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
arts + ents
Mia Freedman, editorial director of the Mamamia website, reads out a tweet she was sent.
arts + ents
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
The write stuff: masters of story-telling James Joyce, left, and Thomas Hardy
arts + ents...begging to differ, John Walsh can't even begin to number the ways
Jose Mourinho on Sky Sports
footballEXCLUSIVE COLUMN Paul Scholes: It was not a leg-breaking tackle, as the Chelsea manager had claimed
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper

£23000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small, friendly, proactive...

Recruitment Genius: Photographic Event Crew

£14500 - £22800 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developers - .NET / ASP.NET / WebAPI / JavaScript

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Software Developer is required to join a lea...

Austen Lloyd: Corporate Tax Solicitor - City

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: A first rate opportunity to join a top ranking...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower