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Martinez edges Murray in close fight

Latest Sergio MartinezBy Jim Dower: Showing his age tonight, WBC middleweight champion Sergio Martinez (51-2-2, 28 KO’s) had a much tougher time than expected in getting past Martin Murray (25-1-1, 11 KO’) by a 12 round unanimous decision in front of his hometown crowd at the Club Atlético Vélez Sarsfield, Buenos Aires, Distrito Federal, Argentina.

The crowd estimates are 50,000 fans were in attendance to see Martinez defeat Murray. The judges scored it 115-112, 115-112 and 115-112. It appears that the fight outcome came down to the last two rounds, the 11th and 12th, where Martinez outworked Murray.

Murray got better as the fight progressed, and he was definitely helped out by the fact that Martinez had his hands down by his sides frequently in trying to goad Murray into throwing punches. It worked for Martinez to encourage Murray to let his hands go, but the problem for Martinez was that he didn’t have the reflexes to block or move away from Murray’s shots. It’s not that Murray’s hand speed was good. It was more of a case of him throwing so rarely that when he did throw, Martinez wasn’t expecting it.

It’s hard to understand what Murray was thinking about when it came down to the last two rounds of the fight because he should have been fighting tooth and nail to try and get a decision win, but instead he fought as if he were the champion instead of the challenger. Murray fought like someone that was trying to protect a lead instead of someone hungry trying to win he fight.

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Welterweight contender Luis Carlos Abregu (35-1, 28 KO’s) gave Antonin Decarie (27-2, 8 KO’s) a real beating in winning a 10 round unanimous decision. The final judges’ scores were 97-92, 97-92 and 97-90. Abregu knocked Decarie down in the 8th round from a big right hand to the head. Decarie got up and fell back down again. A lot of referees would have halted the fight at this point, but this one let the fight continue and Decarie was able to make it to the final bell, but he took a lot of punishment the rest of the way. Abregu was too strong for him and the fight turned out to be a big mismatch. You’ve got to give Decarie a lot of credit for being able to take Abregu’s shots without getting knocked out or quitting.

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Big punching heavyweight contender Magomed Abdusalamov (18-0, 18 KO
s) kept his perfect unbeaten and knockout record in tact with an easy 1st round knockout win over Sebastian Ignacio Ceballos (33-8-2, 25 KO’s). Abdusalamov dropped Ceballos tiwce in the fight, once in the 1st and a 2nd time in the 2nd round before the fight was halted.

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Former EBU 122 pound champion Kiko Martinez (28-4, 20 KO’s) fighting for the first time since his loss to Carl Frampton, stopped Damian David Marchiano (18-10-1, 7 KO’s) by a 2nd round TKO. Martinez knocked Marchiano down once in the 1st and a final time in the 2nd.

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Other boxing action on the card:

Diego Luis Pichardo Liriano UD 6 Ivan Ruiz


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