1888-08-18 (156lbs) George LaBlanche w rtd 3 Jack Varley, New York, USA

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1888-08-18 (156lbs) George LaBlanche w rtd 3 Jack Varley, New York, USA. The fight took place on a barge moored on the Hudson River near Yonkers. Varley (157), who arrived in America claiming to be the English middleweight champion, was soon found wanting and by the end of the opening round he had been cut over the right eye and was receiving a bad beating at the hands of LaBlanche (156). It continued in the same vein in the second session and after Varley, now cut on the left eye, was saved by the bell and had been dropped heavily by a smashing blow under the heart he turned away in the third admitting defeat. Having also suffered damage to his mouth and nose, it was not a good start to the day for Varley, especially when the barge was boarded by the river police moments later. The fight, which had begun at 5.30am, lasted just eight minutes and was contested in skin-tight gloves.

LaBlanche was now claiming the title at his stated weight.

On 21 January 1890, Ted Pritchard was matched to fight Alf Mitchell in March to decide the English 156lbs title, but when the fight was called off after he was taken ill the latter claimed the championship, using bare-knuckles or gloves, and by the end of the year was signing himself off as the world middleweight champion.