HENRY WHARTON insists that his young protege George Davey boxed at just half of his capabilities on his victorious professional debut.

Davey kickstarted his career as a pro boxer with a dominant points win over Zygimantas Butkevicius at Leeds’ First Direct Arena, with his fight being broadcast live on BT Sport.

The former title-winning amateur showcased his evasive head movement and timely counter shots during the fight, winning all of the four scheduled rounds.

But while trainer and manager Wharton - a three-time world title challenger during the 1990s- hailed his fighter’s display, he believes that the thousands in the Arena hadn’t even seen half of Davey’s potential ability.

“It was fantastic, what a display of boxing skills!” enthused Wharton.

“This was a big moment for George. It was his first professional fight, against a real tough kid.

“His (opponent’s) record isn’t boastful, but he doesn’t get stopped. How he took some of those shots that George hit him with, I don’t know, at times it looked impossible.

“George picked him to pieces with clever, manufactured shots. He worked on his positions and he landed at will.

“It wasn’t because the kid was there to be hit, it was because George made those opportunities.

“I think in the future we’ll see George land frequently on fighters who are a lot better than the lad he boxed tonight.

“George will get better as his opponents get better. I think that you only saw 50% what George is capable of in that fight. He’s still got to grow and mature.

“George will continue to develop in our gym environment and he’ll just get better.

“The George Davey that competes five fights down the line, you won’t recognise him from the fight we saw on his debut.

“But, I’m so happy for him. He’s boxed under the bright lights for the first time on the undercard to a world title fight and his performance was unbelievable.

“A great display of boxing skills. It’s a phenomenal achievement.

“This was his first pro fight and we’re not going to get carried away with that but we’re very happy with his performance.”

The fight took place on just two fights before Josh Warrington’s successful IBF featherweight world title defence against Sofiane Takoucht with a strong portion of the crowd seated to watching Davey’s fight.

The York boxer sold over 400 tickets for the bout and the pressure of the evening may have had an effect on his performance, Wharton conceded.

“George has had four rounds, in a massive arena and at times he was in awe of the occasion,” said the trainer.

“Perhaps the whole occasion of the night did get to him at times because it is a big occasion.

“Lots of people had been wishing him well all throughout the day on social media.

“We want to thank the York public for that because they’ve really got behind George.

“We’ve got a little bit excited, which is good, because we realise that George is the real deal.

“We want to boast someone that can take us somewhere to see these big shows on the same bills as world titles and other championships.

“George is someone that can achieve big things in this sport.

“We want to wholeheartedly thank those people that have backed George.”