Last night in Bolton, super-middleweight Jamie Cox retained his unbeaten record with a wide ten-round points win over Argentine Martin Fidel Rios. The official score of referee and sole scorer Phil Edwards was a huge 97-86 (mistakenly announced as 97-76 by the MC) for the 30-year-old southpaw from Swindon. Cox is now 21-0(12). Rios falls to 20-10-3(11).
Now to attempt to describe the crazy action!
Cox, arguably the angriest, most volatile fighter in the sport today, was guilty of: butting, hitting low, hitting on the break, hitting Rios after he had knocked him down in the 3rd-round and of hitting after the bell. For his part, Rios – who had clearly done his homework on Cox and his reputation for losing his cool – did his best to wind Cox up by: talking to him, holding frequently, hitting after the bell himself and, most crazily, appearing to try to bite Cox on the neck.
At times, when an actual boxing match broke out, the two traded in exciting fashion, Cox also boxed quite well when he was able to keep his cool. Cox’ chin was tested on occasion, as was the Argentine hard case’s beard put to the test. Ref Edwards, who worked almost as hard as the two fighters, lost count of the points he deducted from both fighters. Points were taken from Cox for deliberate butting and for hitting Rios on the back of the head. Cox was issued his final warning at one stage yet he continued, right to the end, to use his head as a weapon. Cox was lucky not to have been thrown out.
Rios was just as dirty, having three points taken from him; this third deduction meaning he should have been disqualified, but again, Edwards lost count and no-one could really blame him. It was a wild, messy, foul-fest of a fight, one that did Cox and his attempts at landing a world title chance no favours whatsoever. But, on the other hand, Cox again showed he is never boring to watch. Lovers of The Sweet Science will not have enjoyed last night’s bar-room brawl, but lovers of a street fight sure got their money’s worth.
Cox needs to tighten up his defence if he’s to go any further, but more importantly – far more importantly in fact – he needs to learn ow to keep his cool and not be so utterly reckless. Cox fights every fight like a man possessed. If he continues the way he’s going, he will not make the most of the considerable talents he does have.
As for Rios, he can be relied upon to test a number of other up and coming super-middleweights.
On the under-card, Paul Butler, boxing for the first time in seven months and now working with Joe Gallagher, won a ten-round decision over game Mexican Alexis Ruiz. This fight, one that saw bantamweight Butler warm up for an expected shot at IBF champ Lee Haskins, could not have been more different to the main event. Butler improved to 22-1(12) with a classy, enjoyable to watch display of boxing. Ruiz is now 11-4-1(4). He has never been stopped