Nice to be* back WCB’ers and apologies for not keeping you up to date with everything, but to bring you up to speed here’s my latest ramblings and bullshit.
Last night in that there London, Frank Warren, HOF promoter, put on 2 world title fights and his hot prospects Daniel Dubois and Anthony Yarde on the bill also. The world title bouts were James DeGale defending his IBF strap against Caleb Truax, an Amerikaner from Minnesota. As well as Lee Selby who also defended his belt against Eduardo Ramirez of Mexico. More about them a bit later.
20 years old, heavyweight, Daniel Dubois. Remember that name because he is ‘Dynamite’. That’s his nickname; 6 wins, 6 KO’s. Last night’s offering was Welshman Dorian Darch, whose record read of 12-4-1. Carried a bit of experience then, but only one stoppage win! That reminded me of the quip made by Frank Warren of “a heavyweight without a punch is like a beautiful blonde without a chest!” ‘Nuff said. Anyway, seeing as this looked a fair(ish) match on paper I wondered how long this might last and knowing the power in Dan’s hands I knew it wouldn’t last long. I had a £3 punt (about $5) on ‘DDD’ winning in 2, which he duly did, and me being about 17 dollars in US$ richer! Woohoo! I won’t spend it all at once then! If you’ve not looked on YouTube yet then do so now. As I’ve mentioned before he’s put Joshua on his butt in sparring so have a look and see (you won’t see the spar though).
After that demolition job we then had light heavy prospect Anthony Yarde up against an experienced Montenegrin named Nikola Sjekloca with a ledger of 32-5-1. That name sounds familiar, doesn’t it? No, of course it doesn’t but this fellah actually came to have a scrap! He gave Anthony 4 competitive rounds before Yarde was hitting him and hitting him hard. In the post fight interview Yarde said it was the first time he felt someone actually hit him in a contest since his amateur days. Yarde had only 15 amateur contests so it remains to be seen how he goes further in the pro ranks but he radiates confidence and once he hits you then you stay hit. From what I can gather, most of the top contenders in the UK want silly money, what with the risk-reward situation. Yarde is now 14(13)-0.3zc `/
So onto the world title bouts and first up was Welshman Lee Selby who you might recall lost his mother earlier this year and with 10 days before a previous world title defence. Lee was up against a Mexican who turned up in this country a week before the fight 8 pounds overweight! As this was an IBF super bantamweight defence the IBF were not very happy. Which begs the question, why bother? Seriously, why waste everyone’s time? Ramirez, as no surprise to anyone came on the scales 2lbs overweight and therefore Selby’s title was not on the line. Lee is a classy little boxer and a former GB Olympian from 2008 and showed in spurts just why he’s so good. I say in spurts because as the title was not being contested I got the impression that Lee was perhaps disinterested and Ramirez had shown everyone a lack of respect by not making weight or basically giving 2 fucks. The scorecards read a unanimous decision of 119-109, 116-112 (not even close) and 118-110. A good nights work for Lee but not all that in retrospect.
To the main event then and James DeGale and his fourth defence of his IBF super-middleweight strap and his first defence at home in the UK. Caleb Truax, who the hell is he? Well, now he is the NEW IBF champ as he gave ‘Chunky’ Degale an unexpected homecoming in what was a lethargic display in my view. The first 4 rounds were nothing spectacular and as I’d been up since 0430 yesterday morning for work, I was struggling to keep my eyes open. Come the 5th, Truax’s game plan of pushing James onto the back foot were he’d done his homework watching him against Badou Jack, came to fruition. Caleb came in with a hook to the body with Chunky on the ropes and then an overhand right followed by a vicious uppercut which damaged DeGale’s mouth. If you saw what happened to Chunky’s (nickname from the amateurs) two front teeth in the Badou Jack fight you’ll see he wasn’t very comfortable after that. In fact, DeGale was just covering up and not firing back. It was an awful couple of rounds after that, although no knockdowns it was pretty one-sided. In round 9, DeGale must have realised his belt was slipping from his waist and recovered somewhat to show why he was the champion. Alas, a bit too little too late, and the body language from his corner spoke volumes at the final bell. The scores read out at 114-114 from Stevie Wonder, the other two judges gave it 112-115 and 112-116. Truax is a humble and respectful bloke, he had no airs or graces about him in the post-fight interview and a well-deserved winner too. I didn’t begrudge this Yank coming over here to our shores and winning his belt, the fellah is a top lad in my book. To be honest, DeGale has not always being the British public’s favourite either, not humble enough, to be frank. This scuppers a lucrative rematch with WBA ‘regular’ champ George Groves, who faces Chris Eubank Jr. in the New Year in the Super 6 tournament.
My final thought on the Lomachenko-Rigondeaux fight which I watched this afternoon and avoiding social media, telly and radio reports. 1st round cagey, after that Lomachenko shows why he is boss and is a genius. I know Donald is not convinced but after only losing one amateur bout in what, 400-odd contests and then avenging that loss and then winning his 1st world title in his 3rd pro bout when he’d contested for it in his 2nd bout? Mesmerising his opponents, baffling them so they quit? Rigondeaux’s hand didn’t look swollen once they got the wraps off, did it? No, because he lost his bottle, couldn’t handle the bedazzlement and was looking more like he was auditioning for ‘Dancing with the Stars’ with all the grabbing. Over here gypsy men literally ‘grab’ a woman they want to get with and if you don’t believe me look it up on YouTube, I shit you not. Always the desperate in that contest, methinks.
Thanks for reading, see you here again soon. Promise!