SUNDERLAND heavyweight Warren Baister edged a close contest to progress to the quarter-finals of the Commonwealth Games this afternoon.
Baister beat Northern Irishman Steven Ward via a split decision after a bruising encounter that saw both fighters trade a series of heavy blows.
The Wearsider made a relatively slow start, but he improved as the fight wore on and was justifiably declared the victor after landing the more telling shots in the final two rounds.
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Baister said: “I had a little bit too much adrenaline to start with and it took me a while to get my head together.
“The second round I started to pick it up and the third round I was fine but I got dragged into the trenches a bit.”
Baister was left nursing a cut eye, but is confident the wound will have healed in time for Wednesday afternoon's quarter-final against Canadian Samir El-Mais.
He said: "The eye is fine, just a little bit of glue needed to stick it together and it will be fine for my next fight."