RISING star Kash Farooq paid tribute to the team at Renfrew Boxing Club after securing an impressive victory in his latest ring appearance.

Farooq is the new WBC International Silver Bantamweight champion, courtesy of a unanimous points decision over Alexander Espinoza at the Copper Box Arena, in London, on Saturday night.

The fight was broadcast live on Sky Sports, with judges scoring it 97-93, 97-95 and 97-94 in his favour.

And 25-year-old Farooq, who trains at Renfrew Boxing Club, believes the title is a deserved reward for the hard work done there in recent months.

He said: “There’s a lot of hard work in the gym and practice, practice, practice. That’s what it comes down to.

“I’ve been working on this for such a long time.”

Farooq was in action for the first time since November, when he defeated Angel Aviles for the WBA Continental Bantamweight crown at London’s Wembley Arena.

Espinoza, who had a record of 20-2 heading into the fight, was defending his title for the first time, after winning it in September, but it was Farooq who dominated.

He received widespread praise for his exciting style as he rocked Espinoza with quick jabs and straight rights.

Espinoza tried to make more of an impact in the final rounds and left Farooq with a nasty cut near his right eye but it was too little, too late.

Farooq said: “I’m over the moon with the performance. I knew it was going to be a tough fight.

“He took some really heavy shots and he kept coming because, when you’re a champion, you don’t want to give it up. I wasn’t going to be denied.”

Farooq’s impressive performance sparked calls for a rematch with Scottish rival Lee McGregor.

In November 2019, McGregor won their first fight through a controversial split decision.

That remains Farooq’s only defeat to date, with promoter Eddie Hearn, of Matchroom Sport, keen to see them square off again.

Hearn said: “At that division, it’s so tough to win a world title and he’s still going to have to improve.

“I know the dream is to win a world title but I can’t help but saying we have to see the Lee McGregor rematch. That fight sells out the Hydro in Glasgow every single day of the week.”