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Khan beats Diaz & Martinez decisions Murray in unpopular decisions

Amir Khan Julio Diaz Latest Sergio MartinezA lot has been said over the years about home decisions and that was yet again the case tonight, one in Sheffield, England and the other in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Both of the fights were competitive and top class boxing was on display but surely it’s time that these dodgy decisions have to be cut from the sport before they kill it.

First up in the evening was what was meant to be a routine tune-up fight for Amir “King” Khan against the well respected but perhaps getting on a bit in his career, Julio Diaz. Khan came out and for the first couple of rounds demonstrated his blistering hand-speed and solid footwork but as the fight went on much like the Khan v Garcia fight of last year Diaz found his range and began to tag Khan.

The ‘feather-fisted’ Diaz landed a solid left in the 4th which put Khan firmly in the seat of his pants on the canvas, Khan got up quickly and responded well, however, for the rest of the round and the majority of the remainder of the fight a lot like Peterson fight Khan was consistently on the run and looked vulnerable time and again during the closing rounds. He was staggered in the 8th, 9th, 11th and 12th and and was yet again doing the Amir Khan dance around the ring with his baby giraffe legs.

I was impressed with Khan’s heart tonight but he showed that he cannot change his boxing DNA and improve his defensive skills, when he gets tagged he wants to throw bombs. Khan for me did not do enough to win the fight however. the judges scores of 115-112, 114-113 and 115-113 obviously saw it differently.  I can’t help but feel that if he is put back in with the likes of Lamont Peterson, Danny Garcia or Lucas Matthysse in December in a title fight he could be being wheeled of the MGM Grand.

Later on, Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez took on Martin “Power” Murray in Buenos Aires, Argentina. This was a homecoming fight for one of the best P4P fighters on the planet in Martinez.

The fight started at a decent pace with Martinez lowering his hands from the opening bell in an attempt to goad Murray out of a defensive stance and entertain his fans, he took the early rounds with Murray presumably looking to avoid a blowout early on.

As the fight progressed, Murray began to find his range and gain his composure in the hostile Argentinian crowd as he began to have some success with his straight right. As his confidence grew it seemed to sap the belief from the reigning champ, Murray landed a solid right hand in the 8th and it sent an off balance Martinez to the canvas.

Martinez was not hurt by the blow just caught off balance came back well, however, for the remainder of the middle rounds and arguably the fight Murray began walking down his opponent landing the right hand at will.

A moment of controversy in the 10th as Murray seemed to land a clean punch round the back of Martinez’ ear sending him to the canvas once more but it was ruled a slip but the referee. The WBC using the instant replay agreed with the referee however it looked to rest of the world like Murray had again caught Martinez (who took his time getting up) off balance.

In the 11th and 12th both fighters were looking to land decisive blows to either gain the points on the judges’ scorecards or finish the show early. Murray landed the more eye catching and damaging shots in the closing stages amd surely had done enough to take the fight.

The judges’ all scored the bout 115-112 in favor of Martinez much to the delight of the partisan crowd inside the stadium in Argentina, but to the dismay of the boxing world as Murray landed more shots at a higher percentage and more power shots at a higher percentage.

In conclusion, although a night of thoroughly entertaining boxing was enjoyed it seems to be becoming an all too familiar story the ‘home crowd’ factor in these prizefights is dictating the results. Hats off to Murray and Diaz for both being very gracious in defeat and I’m sure we will see more of them in the future. And congratulations to Amir Khan and Sergio Martinez for winning albeit in fortuitous circumstances.

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