Unheralded Albert Mensah Upsets Michael Katsidis Via Majority Decision - The End For “The Great?”

By James Slater: Last night at The Hard Rock in Las Vegas, unheralded, largely unknown Albert Mensah of Ghana made a name for himself at the expense of a past-his-best, possibly even finished Michael Katsidis. After ten thrilling rounds that saw a ton of phone booth action, the bigger, thicker set and younger Mensah pulled out the majority verdict.

Forget all about the ludicrous 98-92 score turned in by one judge, the 96-94 and 95-95 cards were far more accurate. The right man won the fight, however, and Mensah is now 25-3-1(10). Australia’s Katsidis falls to 28-6(23) and the 31-year-old has now lost four from his last five fights.

Right at the bell, Katsidis jumped right on the younger, bigger man, looking to make it his kind of fight - you know, the type of give-his-all blood and guts war the man from Toowoomba has thrilled us all with so many times over the years. Well, the number of tough fights he’s had appear to have definitely caught up Katsidis. Last night’s battle was close, with a number of rounds quite tough to score, but although Katsidis was close to setting a punch-stat record (well over a hundred punches thrown in a number of rounds), Mensah was the man landing the cleaner, more eye-catching work.

Katsidis, his eyes banged up and bruised as they have been so many times before, made the fight close enough for argument, having Mensah backed up for long periods, but he never appeared to truly hurt his man. Mensah, on the other hand, looked close to banging out a stoppage in the 9th. Two hard left hooks crashed into Katsidis’ jaw and the former WBO interim lightweight champ looked ready to go. A combination of Mensah not going for it and Katsidis’ sheer toughness saw “The Great” through the round.

Mensah closed the show by hurting Katsidis again in the 10th, winning this one on the cards.

The future looks pretty bleak for Katsidis. He was hoping to re-launch his career in America, at 140-pounds (where he had fought before) and with new trainer Justin Fortune. Instead, Katsidis had to dig as deep as he has in his big fights and he came up short. Retirement may well be the only sensible option. Sure, we’ll all miss the always-exciting, he-wears-his-heart-on-his-sleeve warrior, but Katsidis’ long-term health has to be considered. How much can he take?

For Mensah, who has considerable skills, a good chin (never stopped, his last loss coming way back in 2005) and a good engine, some potential big paydays loom.

Article posted on 14.04.2012

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