However, to the astonishment of Catterall, and many fans and boxing pundits, two judges ruled in favour of the Scot despite him being floored in the eighth round.

One even scored the fight 114-111 in favour of Taylor, a verdict which led Sky Sports analyst Johnny Nelson to declare afterwards “I’m in shock. Josh Taylor did not win that fight.”

Former British light-welterweight champion Catterall, 28, ended a 14-month wait to step back in a boxing ring but showed no signs of ring-rust as he rocked Taylor within 20 seconds via a big overhand left.

He proceeded to dominate the early proceedings, and although Taylor – with a vociferous crowd behind him – sought to come back into it, his hopes appeared all but over when he was deducted a point for an exchange after the bell in the 11th round.

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“For what. Boxing shame on you. Judges. Dreams stolen.”

Catterall’s frustration would have been compounded by the fact he initially agreed a step-aside deal in order to allow Taylor to face then champion Jose Ramirez, with the agreement he would then take on the winner.

However, his title ambitions, temporarily at least, now appear in tatters and his trainer Jamie Moore told reporters after the fight the situation was “difficult to put into words.”

He said: “You’re talking about a kid that’s worked all his life to wait for that moment. He performs like that, beats the champion in his own back yard and gets robbed. It’s disgusting.”

Taylor however, was defiant in his post-bout interview after taking his pro-record to 19-0.

“I believe I got the win 100% but Jack did very well. It was close, I let him have a little too much success, but overall I scored the bigger and better shots, the more meaningful shots.”

However, fight promoter Ben Shalom admitted to being ’embarassed’ by the verdict, and immediately called for an inquest.