Not so Special, eh Kell?

11 07 2012

Kell Brook came through the toughest test of his career to date as he held onto his unbeaten record in Sheffield.

Brook was pushed all the way by Carson Jones as he won the IBF Eliminator via a points decision.

‘Special K’s’ record now stands at 28-0 after two of the judges scored the bout 116-113 and 115-113 in favour of the hometown hero, while the third judge ruled it a draw.

Cheered on by the hometown crowd, Brook raced into an early lead as he constantly out-classed Jones during the first half of the fight; leaving Jones baffled and looking distinctly ordinary.

Brook established his jab early and was boxing superbly; showing a wide array of shots, good footwork and a willingness to tie up and work on the inside.

However Jones continued to come forward and apply the pressure in the final six rounds, and even breaking Kell’s nose in round 8 following a short right from the American.

No matter what Brook did, he could just not stop Jones from coming forward.

Jones, who won his last 8 fights by stoppage, looked like he was on his way to doing that in the 9th as he wobbled Brook who was saved by the bell.Brook seemed to wobble Jones in the 10th but that was a fleeting moment of success.

To his credit, Brook displayed real heart and courage as he refused to buckled under the intense pressure of Jones.

He decided to display his macho side in the 12th as he went toe to toe with Jones, as he silenced any doubts about his chin or heart.

Following the fight, Brook admitted he needs work on things for future fights.

“I think I got the diet right but I need to get the top men involved so I can sustain it through the whole fight. Things need to be addressed.”

There’s no doubt that Brook proved his chin and heart, something that his critics have wondered about him. That’s not the worry.

The worry for Team Brook should be how Brook seemed to gas-out following his start. Now the broken nose could have affected this but even before that he was starting to look a little sluggish. Another slight worry is Brook lack of power and if his stamina issue isn’t corrected, not having that big punching power could really come back to hinder Brook.

Now people tend to over-react to performances like this (see Amir Khan – Bredis Prescott). We may have just found a style that Brook struggles with (similar to Amir). There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s what Brook does next, what he does to adjust that really counts.

Brook and promoter Eddie Hearn made all the right noises following the fight, about taking another fight (Argentinean Hector Saldivia) before going for the IBF title.

It’s something I’d agree with and it will allow Brook to work on certain aspects of his fight game before he has a title shot.

This isn’t a time for massive changes for Kell; it’s about fine-tuning certain aspects of his fight game.

We’ll see just how special, ‘Special K’ really is.

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Easy work for Fury

10 07 2012

Tyson Fury continued his push towards a world heavyweight title after he stopped Vinny Maddalone in the 5th round.

Fury was never tested as he found his jab from the opening round, snapping Maddalone’s head back repeatedly.

Tyson almost finished the fight in the fourth as he landed big right hands to the body, which left Maddalone shaken up.

There was no rest for Maddalone in the fifth as Fury kept up the pace and after another fierce barrage, the referee thankfully stepped in to end the contest.

Following the figth, Fury called out pretty much everyone in the heavyweight division except David Price.

If Fury isn’t going to fight Price, then I’d like to see him try and get a fight with either Tomasz Adamek or Alexander Povetkin.

I think Fury would beat either of these guys and it would really put his name out there and get wider exposure for himself.

However I won’t be surprised if he takes a couple more contests like this over in America to try and build up his name over there.





Froch destroys Bute

30 05 2012

Well who saw that one coming?Froch KO's Bute

I for one certainly didn’t but I’m happy as Larry that I was there to see the demolition.

Carl Froch claimed the IBF super-middleweight title after destroying Lucian Bute inside 5 rounds to in his home town of Nottingham in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Froch was the underdog going into the fight, with many feeling the Romanian champ was too slick for the British warrior.

But Froch shocked the boxing world, not by simply defeating the undefeated Bute but by demolishing him in a performance full of power, determination and focus.

Backed by a capacity and raucous crowd, started quite tentatively with neither throwing too much as they felt each other out. Froch landed with one or two more flurries and in my opinion took the first round.

Again there wasn’t much to talk about for most of the second round but in the final minute or so Froch landed some shots on Bute that momentarily worried the champ and had him clinching Froch, who won round 2 in my opinion also.

Things really picked up round 3. Bute actually started quite well, landing a few solid shots on Froch before the Nottingham man turned up the heat. After he was tagged by Bute, Froch pushed forward and “bum-rushed” But landing left and rights which caused the champion to back up onto the ropes and invite Froch onto him.

That was definitely a big mistake on Bute’s part and Froch hammered away with lefts and rights, with each punching drawing a loud response from the Nottingham faithful.

Bute, whose legs seemed to have gone, grabbed onto Froch and then, idiotically, backed himself up into another corner and allowed Froch to tee off again before clinching again. It was a pattern that continued through to the end of the round, with Froch teeing off as Bute lay against the ropes and clinching whenever he got the chance. Even though there was no knock down, there’s no doubt in my mind that it was a 10-8 round to Froch.

Bute deserves a bit of credit for sticking in there but as walked back to his corner after round 3, any confidence he had going into this fight was visibly gone from the Canada-based champ.

Round 4 was fairly even, that is until the final 20-odd seconds. Froch charged Bute, who was against the ropes, and proceeded to hammer away with the bell saving Bute from his first loss. Bute struggled to find his corner following that attack from Froch and I was surprised his corner didn’t pull him out then and there.

However Froch wasn’t to be denied on this night and he jumped on Bute from the very first second of round 5. Froch stalked his opponent around the ring and backed him up onto the ropes before unleashing a barrage of power shots that had Bute’s rocked Bute’s had back numerous times.

The referee jumped in and looked as though he stopped the fight, only to attempt to give Bute a standing 8 count as the champ struggled to keep himself upright.

But that was all immaterial as Bute’s corner walked into the ring to retire their fighter out and end the contest, to give Carl Froch his third world title.

Here below is the post-fight press conference:

Hear what Froch had to say on the fight:

Hear what promoter Eddie Hearn had to say on the fight:





Easy work for Price

23 05 2012

Price Powers Past Sexton

David Price continued his impressive pro career with a sensational 4th round stoppage of Sam Sexton.

In truth, Price was never in trouble and dominated the shorter Sexton throughout the fight. Price controlled the range with his jab and Sexton could never get into range to do anything against the Liverpudlian.

Price dropped Sexton late in the 3rd, following a left hand and a right hook. Sexton beat the count and even applauded Price for the shot, which I found extremely odd.

Price, sensing that his man was there for the taking, stepped up the pace in the 4th; dropping Sexton twice to finish the fight.

Sexton was dropped first after a big right hand sent him back into the ropes before unleashing a beautifully placed uppercut to drop Sexton.

Price showed great patience as he picked his shots, causing Sexton to cover up as Price targeted the body before landing a short right to the head – which sent Sexton crashing to the canvas and forcing the referee to stop the fight.

In truth I expected nothing less from David Price but what was most impressive was how he controlled the range and used his height to his advantage (something the Klitschko brothers do very well) as well as his patience.

There’s no doubt Price has the build, the power and the temperament to go all the way.

Promoter Frank Maloney said they’re not going to chuck him in there with the Klitschko’s for the sake of getting a title fight and I have to agree with him. Price has cruised through the domestic scene and now needs to move onto the European scene before stepping up to the world stage.

The future is definitely bright for David Price.

How far do you think he’ll go?

Here’s the full fight below:





Eubank Jr impressive in stoppage win

21 04 2012

Chris Eubank Jr maintained his unbeaten record after an impressive fourth round stoppage of Scotland’s Paul Allison at the Odyssey Arena, Belfast.

The young pro looked very relaxed in this fight and put together some superb combinations and displayed brilliant hand speed as he looks to establish himself as one of Britain’s brightest boxing prospects.

Eubank Jr produced a frenzied attack at the start of the fourth which left the referee with no choice but to stop the fight after Allisons’ head was rocked back several times.

Following the win, Eubank Jr spoke to Channel 5 where he said: “I went in there tonight with the intention of proving a point. I wanted to produce an explosive performance and that’s exactly what I did.”

I was impressed with Eubank Jr combination punching and hand speed but he definitely has to improve on his defence as he was tagged too much for my liking but that should improve in time.

Considering this was only his third professional fight, the future looks very bright for Eubank Jr.





Fury KO’s Rogan

21 04 2012

Tyson Fury clinched the Irish heavyweight title after stopping Martin Rogan in the fifth round.

Fury, adopting a southpaw stance for the first time, struggled to find his range in the first two rounds as Rogan came out all guns blazing.

Despite Rogan’s pressure throughout the first two rounds, Fury didn’t deter from his game plan and he found his range and timing in the third when he dropped Rogan with a straight left.

Rogan battled on but Fury, who was in complete control now, was tagging him at will.

Fury stepped things up in the fifth as he landed a body shot which sent the brave Rogan down to the canvas. Rogan managed to beat the count but the fight was over as Rogan’s trainer stepped in the ring to call the fight off.

After the fight, promoter Mick Hennessey believes that Fury is ready for the best but won’t go chasing the likes of Alexander Povetkin because they will call the shots.

Not sure what Mick Hennessey wants to do then because the only domestic competition that is out their for Fury is David Price. And if he’s not going to take the fight against Price, then the only option for Fury is to go after the likes of Povetkin because he is nowhere near ready for the Klitschko brothers.

It’s the fight all British boxing fans want to see and hopefully they can get it on.

 





Froch outclassed

19 12 2011

Carl Froch lost his WBC super-middleweight title as he was outclassed by Andre Ward in the Super Six final in Atlantic City. 

Froch outclassed

Froch failed in his bid to become Super Six champion as he suffered a unanimous points decision loss to the classy American.

The Nottingham native never troubled the former Olympic gold medalist, who gave a masterful performance

In truth it was hard to give Froch too many rounds as he was made to look slow, ponderous and distinctly poor by Ward.

Ward boxed superbly throughout, using his jab to great effect and landing numerous left hooks.

Ward even managed to surprise Froch, and many others, by being the bully; backing him back onto the ropes throughout the fight.

But Froch never gave up and displayed a true warrior’s heart and fought till the very end.

On a side note, two of the judges’ score cards were just well; laughable.

I’m still left wondering how the Canadian and American judge scored the fight 115-113 to Ward. Had the British judge, who scored the fight a more credible 118-110 to Ward, scored differently we could have had another “controversial” decision. I’m well aware all judges look for different things when scoring a fight but there is no way that fight was as close as the American and Canadian judge scored it. Something seriously has to be done in the future regarding the judges’ scoring.

Froch now joins a long list of British fighters who have lost their titles abroad, but remained dignified in defeat unlike some.

The question now is where does Froch go from here?

His career is by no means over and there are a few fights still out there for him.

He could go on to fight Lucian Bute, a rematch with Mikkel Kessler or even move up to light-heavyweight and fight Nathan Cleverly.

Froch still believes that he could “get Ward” on a good night but after watching the performance on Saturday, I just cannot see it. Ward is too classy and quick for Froch and a rematch would likely result in another clear victory for Ward.

However the other fights should hold no fear for Froch.

Bute has never really fought anyone worth mentioning and has been very protected up in Canada. A rematch with Kessler would allow Froch to write a wrong and a fight with Nathan Cleverly would be a fantastic war and would make some serious money in the UK.

Anyone of these 3 fights would be fantastic and Froch would have a fantastic chance in any of these fights.

Froch should hold his head up high though. He fought like a true warrior and never gave up, fighting till the very end.

There is no shame in losing to Andre Ward (a fighter who has grown on me throughout this tournament), who by all accounts will go on to be a future P4P king.