Every so often boxing has a show of pure courage, heart and guts and we all love it when we see it. The pure real life Rocky moments that sees a fighter pulling off the win through adversity. Sometimes however the story doesn't end that we and today we saw such a story as Japan's Shingo Wake (20-5-2, 12) [和氣 慎吾] gave his all whilst coming up short against Dominican monster Jonathan Guzman (22-0-0-1, 22) in an excellent bout.
The fight started quietly but it wasn't long until Guzman's much vaunted power started to show it's self with the Dominican scoring two knockdowns in round 2 leaving Wake's right eye a total mess with a monstrous cut under it. It seems like Wake wasn't going to last much longer and he was down again in round 3, albeit from a push that was scored as a knockdown, with many suspecting Wake's team would pull him out of the bout before he got injured worse.
Wake however was allowed to continue and gave a brave effort in round 4 before being dropped, hard, in round 5. He was then dropped again several seconds after the bell to end the round from a monstrously huge shot, in a move that really seemed fitting for a point deduction that never came.
Looking like a spent fighter at the start of round 6 it would have made sense again for Wake's team to have pulled their fighter from the bout. Instead they sent him out and he seemed to come out with a spring in his step and looking like a hungry fighter. He backed up Guzman and landed several hurtful looking left hands that made it look like he was coming on strong whilst Guzman's work rate began to drop noticeably. The momentum from round 7 continued in to rounds 8, 9 and 10 with Wake having more and more success, and in fairness he should have had at least one knock-down call in his favour, especially given that he had been pushed for one of the knockdowns earlier in the fight.
Unfortunately for Wake his momentum was stopped in round 11 when he exchanged with Guzman and was left with a nasty cut over the left eye that bled straight into the eye and forced the referee to instantly stop the bout, giving Guzman the stoppage win.
What happened between round 5 and 11 however was amazing. Wake had come from the brink of a very early defeat to give Guzman a genuine test, both men left with with an eye swollen shut, for Guzman it was the left for Wake the right, and both men will be out of the ring for a prolonged time whilst those injuries heal. Unfortunately for Wake it was the left eye being cut, and not the huge gash on his right cheek or the swelling around the right, that forced the referees hand, and it was a very nasty cut, in fact both were.
With the win Guzman won the IBF Super Bantamweight title and announced himself as a genuine world class fighter, For a badly swollen Wake the result is a bad one, however the courage he showed and the way he fought himself back into the fight will have won him fans around the world and will likely see him being given another shot in the near future. The performance from both was brilliant and if you missed the fight you really need to find it as it was an amazing contest of guts, power and heart. A tremendous contest.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
World Title Results
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