Saturday, 6 April 2013

Roman Martinez v Diego Magdaleno

Puerto Rican Roman "Rocky" Martinez (27-1-2, 16) successfully defended his WBO Super Featherweight title with a hard fought victory over the previously undefeated Diego Magdaleno (23-1, 9) in a hard fought bout.

The bout started well for Magdaleno who used his feet well to move around the much slower Martinez who seemed to be having his usual slow start to a bout. Magdaleno scored numerous times with either hand though his lack of power really did little other than irritate the champion who took the blows with out too many worries. Magdaleno continued to have success in the following round though Martinez appeared to slowly be warming up into the bout and was begging to land his right hands.

It was a shot Martinez in round 4 that really said everything about the bout as he dropped Magdaleno hard and showed who was the man and who was the boy. Magdaleno picked himself off the canvas well and fought back hard though the fact that he simply couldn't discourage Martinez made life so much easier for the champion who started to march forward with growing success behind his jab and straight right hand. What also didn't help Magdaleno was his general style which involved a lot of bouncing and moving with out too much effective aggression. He was clearly the faster man though he was also the fighter who was forced on to the back foot by the bull like Martinez.

Although Magdaleno's single shots were having little effect on the champion the challenger did manage to rock Martinez in round 8 which was by far the best Magdaleno round as he wailed away on the Puerto Rican late in the round. Sadly for the challenger round 8 was his last stand before the champion came back strong and walked through the challenger in round 9 then cut him in round 10 with a solid right hand. In fact in round 10 Martinez seemed to land an alarming number of right hands with out too much coming back his way.

Having never been beyond 10 rounds before I got the feeling that Magdaleno didn't really know what to do in round 11 and seemed to spend some time running with out throwing much. This was really not the reaction many would have wanted to see from Magdaleno. Despite Magdaleno's negativity in round 11 the final round was a belter with both men giving it their all in clearly the round of the bout.

The fight never really caught light until the final round (which saw both men trying to stop the other) but despite this it was never poor. Magdaleno seemed willing to try and beat the champion but despite being the betting favourite he never really showed the sort of offensive mindset that suggested he believed he could win. Martinez, whilst limited (and a very beatable champion) proved he was still a tough fighter and the sort of fighter who could be in FOTY type bouts with fighters willing to meet him in the centre of the ring, unlike Magdaleno who was rarely willing to trade.

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