Boxing

Andre Ward establishes himself as the best super middleweight

boxingby Geoffrey Ciani: There are two varieties of one-sided fights. In scenario one, the losing fighter remains a serious threat throughout the duration of the bout. These types of fights tend to keep fans on the edge of their seats always wondering whether the losing fighter can land that one homerun punch that changes everything. The alternative involves exact the opposite—a fight that becomes a foregone conclusion in the early stages. The latter represents what unfolded tonight as Andre Ward (22-0) successfully defended his WBA super world super middleweight title against Allan Green (29-2) in twelve one-sided rounds of action. The judges were unanimous in their verdict, all scoring it a 120-108 shutout in favor of Ward.

After a fairly slow opening stanza, things began picking up a bit in round three when the two fighters engaged in what literally resembled a phone booth brawl. Despite being the much bigger fighter, Green was getting the worse of the exchanges and in a bad way. Ward bullied him into the ropes and was able to have his way with him, throwing a nice variety of short hooks and uppercuts that found the mark. This inside mauling pattern continued in round four when Green once again found himself being roughed up and bludgeoned in close quarters. Ward was relentless in his attack and began landing his power shots with more and more frequency..



Round five saw the action revert back to an outside/midrange affair with Ward once again getting the better of it. He was using an effective jab, planting his feet, and sitting on some really nice punches. In round six, it reverted back to a phone booth brawl, and in round seven it was back to the outside. This alternating trend between inside and outside action would continue throughout the contest with Ward always getting the best of Green regardless of fighting range. He was landing left hooks, right uppercuts, and some really good straight right hands. Green was utterly bamboozled by the assault and had looked like a beaten man as early as the fourth or fifth round. This only emboldened Ward, who continued fighting with the same desire and passion for the full twelve rounds. He was absolutely merciless in his attack and Green had no answers.

This was two dominant efforts in a row for the former Olympic Gold Medalist. In group stage one Ward thoroughly outclassed then tournament favorite Mikkel Kessler. Against Green he was even more assertive as he continued displaying new dimensions to his seemingly ever increasing arsenal of weapons. With the victory, Ward has now ensured himself a spot in the semi-finals and has established himself as the man to beat. Most fights in the tournament thus far have been competitive encounters where the outcome was in question. Not so with Ward who has two lopsided wins to his credit.

The only question remaining now is can anyone stop Andre Ward? His most difficult test probably comes in group stage three when he is pitted against friend and former Olympic teammate Andre Dirrell. The other Andre’s speed and athleticism are something that may pose some problems for Ward, but Ward has proven to be an adaptable fighter with incredible mental strength and determination. It is doubtful that Dirrell will beat him on athleticism alone because Ward seems to have an endless bag of tricks up his sleeve. Ward will rightfully be the favorite going into that one and if Dirrell cannot beat Ward, it is doubtful that anyone outside of perhaps Lucian Bute would even stand a remote chance, but he is not even part of the Super Six.

Right now Andre Ward should be viewed as the greatest super middleweight in the world. With his tremendous versatility and extraordinary ring intelligence, it will not be surprising to see him finish a perfect 5-0 in tournament play. If he can succeed in doing this then he is surely a superstar in the making.

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Article posted on 20.06.2010



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