17 April (104lbs) Harry McDermott w rsc 8 (15) Kid Veitch, Ginnett’s Circus, Newcastle, England
17 April (104lbs) Harry McDermott w rsc 8 (15) Kid Veitch, Ginnett’s Circus, Newcastle, England. Referee: George Dunning. The final of a 104lbs championship competition, having been roughly treated in the opening rounds McDermott (103) went after Veitch (103) and the pair fought furiously, neck and neck, until a terrific blow to the head had the latter down at the end of the fourth. From thereon McDermott was in the driving seat and eventually had Veitch over again in the eighth before the referee stopped the fight in his favour. Following this, McDermott claimed the English 104lbs title.
On 26 December in a fight not given title billing, McDermott, scaling 104½lbs, kayoed Wimbledon’s James Freeman, 101½lbs, who was making his pro debut after winning the ABA crown. Later, on 11 February 1901, McDermott was forced to pull out of his 104lbs title defence against Dave Job when unable to make the weight. Having forfeited his title claim, both Digger Stanley (June 1901) and Buck Shine challenged all England in October 1901 to decide the championship.
Meantime, a fight between Stockton’s Patsy Haley (not to be confused with the American of the same name) and Willie Gill on 15 July 1901 was advertised as being for the English 104lbs title, but in truth it was merely the North of England championship that they were contesting. Scheduled for 20 two-minute rounds at Victoria Park, Stockton, Haley won in the 15th when the referee stepped in to save Gill from taking further punishment.