McGregor claims Commonwealth title in bruising battle in London

Rising star Lee McGregor celebrated after winning the vacant Commonwealth bantamweight title in his fifth professional fight.

But the Edinburgh-based fighter was taken nearly all the way by Cameroon-born, former English bantam and Commonwealth flyweight champion Thomas Essomba.

McGregor stopped his man in the 12th round of their bruising battle in London’s atmospheric York Hall in Bethnal Green.

And former amateur star McGregor showed real stamina and maturity for a man in his first 12-round contest.

McGregor, who was the taller of the two men, started well, boxing at distance behind the jab while Essomba rushing his opponent to attack with short hooks to head and body.

At the end of the fourth, McGregor was on the canvas, referee Ian John-Lewis judging it a knockdown.

But, McGregor recovered and through the second-half of the contest, the ambitious Scot began to dominate.

His powerful left hooks to head and body caused damage but Essomba was always dangerous and he caught McGregor with a solid shot in the eighth round.

It did not deter the Scot and McGregor stepped-up in the 11th round and finished off his game opponent with a left hook to the head in the final round, sending Essomba down on one knee with 1min 38secs left.