Sunday, March 22, 2009

Klitschko Stops Gomez in 9

Andrew Fruman recaps last night's heavyweight bout between Vitali Klitschko and Juan Carlos Gomez.

Too big and too strong. That was the story in Stuttgart, Saturday night, as Vitali Klitschko made it a perfect two for two on the comeback trail with a 9th round TKO victory over southpaw Juan Carlos Gomez. It was an awkward messy encounter, featuring plenty of clinches, a few head clashes, a point deduction and and a bit of blood spilled on both sides.

Making the most of his size edge, Klitsckho had things his own way for most of the contest. Gomez was always looking to land his left hand, but the bigger man did a good job of moving to his left and controlling the distance with his jab. He consistently kept Gomez on the outside, and the former cruiser-weight star, never looked comfortable trying to force his way in.

Gradually, Klitschko's steady stream of heavy jabs, along with the occasional stinging right hand took their toll, and by the 5th round, Gomez was looking tired and discouraged. His face puffy, with blood dripping from a cut around his right eye, Gomez battled on, but was largely ineffective even when he did manage to get close.

A hard right hand dropped Gomez in the 7th, and towards the end of the 8th, the badly fading fighter appeared to almost turn his back to avoid more punishment. He seemed to think better of it at the last second, and the bout continued, although referee Daniel Van de Wiele would have been well within his rights to stop it.

Nobody could have blamed Gomez if he had decided to remain on his stool for the 9th, but he chose to keep fighting. After another knockdown, and with Gomez on the verge of being sent to the canvas yet again, the bout was halted at 1:48 of the round.

e-mail Andrew Fruman


dread said...

Watching that fight was like watching someone getting chunky soup out of a can.

Andy said...

Is that good or bad, or should I not ask?