Josh Taylor had to dig down to the bottom of his soul, to labour a win against former world champion Viktor Postol.
In another case of amateur star fast tracking, Taylor took a courageous risk in challenging ‘The Iceman’ in only his thirteenth fight:
“That’s only my thirteenth fight and you know, it’s on the cusp of a world title, you know so there was a lot at risk. I was a bit tight at the first bit but I will learn from that” Said Taylor post fight
It looked like the risk may not pay off however, as Taylor had some tricky early and middle rounds which had him in trouble. However, Taylor showed the grit of a true champion and tremendous boxing IQ, to adapt and force the win. Here is how the fight played out.
In round one both boxers mirrored each other with their tall frames, and upright stances. Although Taylor was southpaw to Postol’s, orthodox position. Taylor tried to land the jab but could not seem to get his range. Postol in return landed a number of stiff combinations inside to take the opener.
Taylor then took the next two rounds with some long rangy left hooks, and sharp lefts down the middle. Postol however kept relaxed, landing jabs and 1-2 combinations, but was not busy enough.
The Ukrainian then took the next four rounds on my scorecard. His solid steady jab was paying dividends, as it continuously found its way into his opponent’s face. ‘The Iceman’ also shot some sickening uppercuts downstairs to the body, among interspersed combos to the head. ‘The Tartan Tornado’ seems frustrated in these middle rounds as he tried and failed to employ multiple tactics to create openings.
“He was very awkward, he was much more awkward than I was expecting, and he was actually better with his timing on his feet than I was expecting” Said Taylor
Round nine marked a changed of momentum. The Scotsman had his opponent hurt with left and right hooks on separate occasions during the round. In the following round the defending champion kept a high pace, seizing his chance to change the fight. He dropped Postol against the ropes with a looping left hand over the top. However it was close to the end of the round, and the challenger survived.
For the last two rounds Taylor used every reserve of energy to push the tempo, and snatch the rounds. The final round was particularly gritty, as both men held and mauled inside for any bit of advantage. Kombat Kaiser’s final score cards had Taylor winning by two rounds with a knockdown in hand.
However among my shock and disgust, along with that of the Twitter sphere, the official scorecards were shamefully wide:
Victor Loughlin 118-110 Taylor
Fernando Barbosa 117-110
Eddie Pappoe 119 – 108
Eddie Pappoe has shown himself to be thoroughly incompetent as a judge in this scorecard, and for the good of boxing should be placed under investigation.
Taylor, who successfully defended his WBC Silver super-lightweight world title in this world title eliminator summed up his performance:
“I’m still very happy with my performance and I had to adapt, and I had to adapt two or three times as well, and change the way I fought. And I thought I adapted very well.
“This guy Viktor postal has been in with the very best and I’ve overcome it. So I’m taking a lot of confidence from this fight and I believe on the next one I’m going to become world champion”
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