The fight of the year

Sideline Sid
Sports correspondent & historian

Like many other sports fans in the country, Sideline Sid coughed up sixty bucks to watch the Joseph Parker fight with Andy Ruiz junior on Saturday night.

There is no other sport like boxing, which creates controversy year after year, fight after fight.

Saturday nights stouch for the WBO heavyweight crown was no exception, with every man and his dog having an opinion on who really won the fight.

Boxing is subjective and in a really close contest that was witnessed on Saturday night, a different panel of judges may have given it to Ruiz by the same narrow margin. 

Opinions have ranged over a wide spectrum, from one self confessed expert that said that Ruiz won by a wide margin, to others that tell us that Parker deserved a bigger winning margin from the judges. 

My take on the fight was that perhaps the judge who scored it a draw got it spot on.

It was a messy fight to score, with no more than a few clean scoring punches per round.

Many of the shots throughout the bout were taken on the gloves or landed on the shoulders.

Evidence of who threw the heavier punches was provided after the 12 round contest.

Parker's face was unmarked, while Ruiz looked as if he had been through a washing machine with plenty of cuts and bruises on his features.

The Mexican fighters trainer Abel Sanchez always likes his boxers to take the fight to their opponents, which Ruiz did to good effect in the early rounds.

Parker came back into the fight to even it up in the middle rounds, with the last three (championship) rounds extremely close. 

One question was answered for me during the lead-up to the fight - concerning the legitimacy of the title. A myriad of boxing organizations claim to have the world heavyweight champion of the world in their ranks.

The World Boxing Hall of Fame only recognizes the WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO champions, with all the other organizations champions having as much value as Watties Baked Beans titles.

Sir Bob Jones has had his usual tuppence-worth about the bout.

However, he was on the money with his comments that the various boxing bodies are all about charging large sanctioning fees for their numerous titles.

A good example was provided on Saturday night, with the WBO world heavyweight crown along with WBO inter-continental welterweight, WBO international bantamweight and WBO Asia-Pacific women's bantamweight titles on the line.

Was the Pay for View fights, at sixty bucks a throw, good value?

The undercard produced some ripping contests. The commentary team of Colonel Bob Sheridan and kiwi Mike Angove was world class and Monty Beetham asked all the right questions to the winners after each bout.

The only fly in the ointment was the ring announcer, who insisted on shouting his way through each and every introduction.

Having again being asked by a few mates, is Joseph Parker the real deal?, my response was straight back to them - how would you rate Joseph Parker after the Ruiz fight, with David Tua at his best.

Seeya at the McDonalds Super Smash at the Bay Oval on Sunday



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