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Sexton Needs to Give Rogan a Rematch

By William Mackay: If new Commonwealth heavyweight champion Sam Sexton (12-1, 5 KOs) is satisfied with his controversial 8th round stoppage over Martin Rogan (12-1, 6 KOs) on Friday night then I think Sexton might be kidding himself something fierce, because he should consider himself very lucky to have escaped with a victory over Rogan.

For Sexton to get the win, a lot of different factors had to come into alignment in the crucial 8th round, beginning with referee Dave Parris pulling Rogan off of Sexton after he had Sam badly hurt and on the point of a knockout to warn Rogan about throwing punches to the back of Sexton’s head.

What actually happened was that Rogan was lighting Sexton up with big shots in the corner, and for some strange reason Sexton turned completely around and left his back exposed to Rogan while placing both of his arms over the ropes as if he were out on his feet.

Rogan then did what any fighter would do when his opponent turns their back on him, he tried to punch him in the head. It isn’t against the rules to punch a fighter in the back of the head when they turn completely around and leave their back facing their opponent.

That was Sexton’s mistake for doing it, and I can’t imagine why he chose to do that other than to try and escape the big shots that Rogan was firing at him at the time. The referee, though, seemed to get confused by it and pulled Rogan away from Sexton and wasted precious time giving Rogan a needless warning.

With Sexton out on his feet, just the act of pulling Rogan away and taking the time to warn him was enough to give Sexton a little time to recover from having been hurt earlier in the round by some wicked hooks from Rogan.

By the way, Rogan never actually landed a punch to the back of Sexton’s head when he was turned around facing the audience in the corner. Rogan’s right hand landed on the shoulder area, a million miles away from Sexton’s head.

Rogan was responsible for later letting Sexton off the hook when Rogan had him completely out on his feet on the ropes with Sexton’s arms drooping in front of him. Rogan didn’t want to hit Sexton again because he was badly hurt and I suppose Rogan felt that the referee should have stepped in at this point and stopped the fight.

Rogan probably should have, because Sexton was seriously hurt and ready to drop if Rogan had landed one more punch. However, by letting a couple of seconds tick off without throwing anything at Sexton, this allowed Sexton to land a couple of weak punches that connected to the head of Rogan.

In the meantime, Sexton had spit out his mouthpiece prior to all this, which was another reason why Rogan didn’t want to hit him. Once the referee realized the mouthpiece was out, he stopped the action and had Sexton’s mouthpiece reinserted.

Shortly after Sexton had his mouthpiece put back in, the referee stopped the action while Rogan was in the process of trying to finish Sexton off, and took Rogan over to the ringside judge to have him examine Rogan’s swollen shut left eye. The rest is history.

The doctor advised to have the fight stopped and that was it. I have no idea why the referee decided to stop the action right at the moment that Rogan was trying to finish off his hurt opponent and take him over to the doctor.

There was seconds left in the round and the referee could have easily have waited until the end of the round, especially considering that he had messed things up for Rogan earlier by stopping him from finishing off a badly hurt Sexton just to give Rogan a needless warning about punching to the back of the head.

Sexton may not want to give Rogan a rematch, but he really needs to because this fight wasn’t supervised well in the 8th round in my estimation and I think there would have been a much different outcome had the referee let Rogan fight without inserting himself into the situation. It was like Rogan was fighting two people in the ring instead of just one.

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