1898-10-28 (118lbs) Oscar Gardner w co 14 (25) Sammy Kelly, Lenox AC, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA

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1898-10-28 (118lbs) Oscar Gardner w co 14 (25) Sammy Kelly, Lenox AC, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA. Referee: Charlie White. Although reported to be a match made at 116lbs, it was really the American 118lbs title that was at stake in this one. Knocked down in the fourth and twice in the 12th, Kelly, who claimed that he was thrown down on occasion, just about got up in the 14th after being put down by a left to the jaw before being knocked out by another left.

Following his victory, Gardner moved up in weight.

In England on 28 November 1898, Will Curley signed to meet Pedlar Palmer at the NSC, Covent Garden, London on 6 February 1899 in order to decide the 118lbs championship. Unfortunately, it was called off on the eve of the fight and Curley soon moved up in weight.

On 11 February 1899, George Harding won a 118lbs championship competition when outpointing Johnny Thomas over six rounds at Wonderland, Mile End, London.

That was followed by an announcement in the Sporting Life on 21 February 1899 that Darkey Wallace had recently won a championship belt competition at the NSC, while Harry Williams, who was also claiming the English 118lbs title, was found to be unable to make the weight. Other men who saw themselves or were seen by others as English champions at the weight included Palmer (December 1899) and Joe Barrett (the winner of a championship contest when he forced Fred Delaney to retire after two rounds at the New Goodwin Club, Shoreditch, London on 21 February 1900).