NEW YORK, USA – Mexican superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez brutally overpowered England’s Rocky Fielding with a dominant display on his New York City debut Saturday, December 15 (Sunday, December 16, Manila time) to become a three-weight world champion.
Alvarez, the reigning World Boxing Council and World Boxing Association middleweight world champion following his thrilling victory over Gennady Golovkin in September, had little trouble in moving up in weight class and defeating Fielding, who held a second tier version of the WBA’s super-middleweight title.
Alvarez sent Fielding to the canvas in the very 1st round with a crunching body shot and remained in complete control. He delivered a similar punch in the 2nd which was also too much for the Englishman to take.
Fielding just didn’t have the power to compete, and when he was knocked down two further times in the 3rd, referee Ricky Gonzalez stopped the fight with 22 seconds left of the round.
“I thought he would use his distance but luckily he didn’t,” Alvarez said in the ring after becoming the ninth Mexican fighter to be a champion in 3 different weight divisions.
“He came to attack and I did my thing. The plan was to hit the body. That was the result.”
It was a brave effort from the 31-year-old from Liverpool, who deserves great credit for accepting the task of entering the ring against the brilliant flame-haired Mexican, who extended his record to 51-1-2 with 35 knockouts in his first appearance since signing a record-breaking 11-fight, $365 million contract with sports streaming service DAZN.
Fielding, coming into the bout with just one defeat from 28, had won his previous 6 fights, including a memorable victory over Germany’s Tyron Zeuge in July which brought him world title glory.
Yet the proud and rangy Liverpudlian, who possessed a five-inch height and reach advantage, was unable to cope with his opponent’s supreme speed and punch power.
Fighting in the famed Madison Square Garden arena for the first time in front of a vocal pro-Mexican crowd, Alvarez didn’t disappoint.
“I felt good and strong. I want the best fights, and to make sure my name is held up high,” Alvarez said.
The 28-year-old wasted no time in making his mark and when Fielding fell to his knees following a left to the body in the 1st, there only looked like being one winner.
Fielding enjoyed some success but wasn’t using his height to his advantage. Alvarez soaked everything up before sending his opponent down once more in the 2nd with another crunching blow to the ribs.
With 40 seconds left of the 3rd, Fielding was down once again and although he recovered, just moments later Alvarez knocked him down for a 4th and final time.
The Mexican, competing in his second fight since completing a six-month ban for testing positive for a banned substance in March has vowed to drop back down to middleweight next year, which could see a potential third fight with Golovkin become an exciting reality.
“I felt that it (his rivalry with Golovkin) ended on September 15 and I showed that I was best,” Alvarez said.
“But they were two great fights that’s no secret, and if the people want it, we can make it.”
On the undercard, Ireland’s Katie Taylor, the IBF and WBA lightweight champion, moved to 12-0 after winning on points against Finland’s Eva Wahlstrom who suffered her first defeat. – Rappler.com
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