Reidís Commonwealth Disappointment
When Gary Reid left the Potteries for London to meet Nigerian Ajose Olusegun it was more in hope than in expectation. The boxing intelligentsia expected Gary to last between 4 and 6 rounds in last nightís Commonwealth light-welterweight title clash. He confounded the experts however and was still on his feet at the end of 12 gruelling rounds during which he had succeeded in frustrating the very classy African by withstanding everything that he had in his prolific arsenal..
Article posted on 17.06.2007
During the course of his previous 19 victories Olusegun had disposed of 10 of his opponents within the distance and had defeated current Commonwealth champions Bradley Pryce (light-middleweight) and Ali Nuumbembe (welterweight) in 4 and 6 rounds respectively. Last night, despite his best efforts, he was unable to dispatch the indomitable Reid in similar fashion.
Reid always dangerous whilst on his feet found some success and rattled Olusegun on a couple of occasions but was unable to press home his advantage. Olusegunís hand speed and mobility proved too much for Gary to handle even though he stood up to a barrage of searing body shots from the African. Consequently, Ajose Olusegun proved a little too much for Gary Reid to handle. Olusegun emerging a wide points victor over the twelve round distance.
Reid, confident as ever going into the bout, kept things close†in the opener but there were signs, even at that early stage that†his 27†year-old opponent was looking to†raise the tempo.
Employing fast hands Ajose began the 2nd with a combination to the head before following up with a doubled up left hook to the body whilst Gary's short right to the head in response brought only three further uppercuts from the Londoner.
Reidy was looking to get in up close but for long periods in the early stages but the taller man kept him at bay and he returned to his corner at the end of the 3rd with a mark below the left eye.
A heavy right hook to the head in next left Gary glancing down towards his corner as Olusegun, scoring with a pair of looping rights began to further up the pace. Reid was still countering regularly but Ajose's eye-catching work was already building him a decent lead.
A few meaty right hooks from Reid caught the always busy Olusegun in the middle stages and he feigned injury on one such occasion mid-way through the 7th.
After a closer 8th session one wondered if Gary was going to come back with a late surge but any such thoughts were dispelled when in the very next round he was caught by a counter left hook to the head which momentarily looked to have him in trouble.
To Gary's credit however he dug deep and replied with a thudding right hook of his own before the round was over.
There were more counter rights in the later stages but by†then the pace had slowed and Olusegun, still mobile and always on his toes, continued to edge towards his 20th pro victory.
There was little doubt as to the who was the victor, a point emphasized by the margin of victory handed down by the three scoring judges but Reid was never really troubled again and deserves credit for†taking a top class opponent the full distance, ensuring that he will still be considered amongst the higher light-welterweight echelon domestically.
Despite the result Reid's team were quick to heap praise on their man, Scott Lawton saying "Gary can hold his head high, he did us proud tonight and there's plenty of fight left in him yet. That kid is world rated and a lot of people thought he would win fairly quickly but Gary didn't read the script, he just kept throwing leather. Even when he got rocked he fired back with big shots of his own.'
Reid, who pressed an ice bag to his left shoulder as he left the venue, had earlier told Sky TV "I never really got out of first gear. I had a bit of trouble with the shoulder but that's taking nothing away from him, he's the best boxer I've fought".
Olusegun meanwhile feels he has what it takes to move on to the next level, saying that he needs a big fight to satisfy his hunger, he is eyeing a shot at current British world champions Ricky Hatton or Junior Witter.††††††
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