Ja'Rico O'Quinn's knockout victory over Peter McGrail, named 2023's Upset and Comeback of the Year in boxing by NoSmokeSport

2023 Upset Of The Year/Comeback Of The Year – Ja’Rico O’Quinn KO 5 Peter McGrail

Peter McGrail was set for his US debut on a Brit-heavy card against the once-beaten Ja’Rico O’Quinn.

A strong favourite, the 2020 Olympian was proving just why he was dubbed the ‘Scouse Lomachenko’.

McGrail scored his first knockdown in the second, stopping the jab of O’Quinn, moving to his left and catching the American square on with a back hand.

The Liverpudlian grew in confidence in rounds three and four, bouncing in and out with quick feet catching O’Quinn with sharp left hands to the head and body at range.

Early in round four, McGrail moved his feet outside the lead foot of O’Quinn giving him leverage to connect with a power left hand scoring a second knockdown, much heavier than the one in the second round.

O’Quinn looked baffled in the remainder of the fourth, completely unaware of where the punches were coming from and where McGrail’s feet would be seconds later.

McGrail had an 80-19 connect advantage heading into round 5 with the end surely near. The commentators could not praise him enough, “This guy looks like a world champion already…His head’s never in the same spot, it’s hard to counter a fighter like that…He’s absolutely fantastic and his judgement of distance is brilliant”

Just seconds later, his judgement distance wasn’t perfect, his head was in the same place and O’Quinn scored with a right hand that knocked McGrail clean out.

A fight that was made for McGrail to look good in his US debut and was pretty much one-sided until O’Quinn finished it with a highlight-reel shot – similar to Melikuziev-Rosado.

Not only the upset of the year but a contender for knockout of the year and the frontrunner for the comeback of the year.

Other Honourable Mentions For Upset Of The Year

  • Joseph Parker UD 12 Deontay Wilder
  • Miyo Yoshida UD 10 Ebanie Bridges
  • Brian Mendoza KO 7 Sebastian Fundora
  • Jose Felix TKO 3 Gary Cully

Image: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing

By Darshan Desai

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