1902-01-27 (154lbs) Philadelphia Jack O’Brien w disq 3 (15) Charlie McKeever, Yorkshire County Athletic Club, Leeds, England
1902-01-27 (154lbs) Philadelphia Jack O'Brien w disq 3 (15) Charlie McKeever, Yorkshire County Athletic Club, Leeds, England. Billed for the British version of the 154lbs title, O’Brien (157½), who was forced to pay forfeit, won a contest that was fast, furious and clever when McKeever (154), who had been warned several times for holding, back-heeled him and was disqualified towards the end of the third round. Following this, O’Brien returned to America to seek a fight with Tommy Ryan.
Despite Dido Plumb continuing to claim the English 154lbs title for the next couple of years when he remained inactive the weight class leadership was eventually taken up by Charlie Knock, who won a championship competition at Wonderland, Mile End, London on 1 February 1904 when outpointing Charlie Allum over 12 two-minute rounds. Knock (153½) received a silver cup on beating Allum (153), but it was the loser who began challenging all England at 154lbs.
Another man to catch the eye was Jim Courtney, who beat the future British champion, Pat O'Keefe, three times at the Welsh NSC, Queens Hall, Cardiff, Wales in 1904 - on points over 15 rounds on 16 March, a tenth-round knockout on 2 May and an 11th-round knockout on 23 May – prior to outpointing Jim Styles over ten rounds at the same venue on 3 October to win an international championship competition.
While not much more is heard from Courtney at the weight, men such as Joe Platford (February 1905), Mike Crawley (December 1905), O’Keefe (January 1906), Pat Daly (April 1906), Arthur Daley (August 1907), Sid Doyle (January 1908) and Jack Kingsland (July 1908) continued to challenge all England at 154lbs.