By Elliot Foster
Echo Arena, Liverpool, Merseyside - In a crossroads battle for the vacant WBA Inter-Continental middleweight title, Martin Murray (35-4-1, 16 KOs) won a twelve round majority decision over Gabe Rosado (23-11, 13 KOs). The scores were 114-114, a crazy score of 119-109 for Murray and 116-112 for Murray. Rosado went wild after the scores were read and nearly went after Murray.
After order was restored, the two boxers were arguing over the outcome during Murray's post-fight interview on Sky Sports.
Murray started off the fight by using his boxing ability and not looking to engage Rosado in a war. Rosado was applying the pressure and was looking to make it a more physical fight.
The fight was more of a chess match than many likely expected. Both of them were being cautious with their shots and picking their punches with very calculated care.
Rosado was starting to let his hands go with big shots in the fourth. Murray went back to his boxing and was looking to catch Rosado in spots. They fight continued with close rounds, as Murray was giving a lot of respect to Rosado, who was landing the hard shots.
In the eight, Murray was really picking up the pace, using his movement and being accurate. Rosado was still pressing forward and loading up the shots but not landing a lot of them.
They continued to box in close quarters in the ninth and tenth rounds. Murray was being more accurate with the shots, landing on Rosado when he came inside. During the tenth, Murray was given a harsh warning from the referee for landing too many low blows. They stood toe to toe, trading punches, for most of the final twenty seconds.
Rosado was being outboxed in the eleventh, but then rallied hard in the final minute with big punches that hard Murray on the run and holding. Rosado continued to rally in the twelfth round, pressing forward and throwing a lot of punches as Murray was being defensive and staying on the move.
ALSO ON THE CARD
Rocky Fielding won the belt he was denied the chance to get his hands on 18 months ago.
The Liverpool super-middleweight outpointed John Ryder, exclusively live on Sky Sports, at the ECHO Arena in his home city.
It was something of a forgettable affair, as part of the undercard to Martin Murray’s mouth-watering middleweight showdown against Gabriel Rosado, which Fielding got via a split decision after tallies of 116-113, 115-112 and 115-114 were handed in by the three scoring judges.
Meanwhile, Sean Dodd ensured that the fairy tale story continued.
The Birkenhead man, a former two-time British lightweight title challenger, won the vacant Commonwealth belt in an enthralling 12-round battle of grit and determination against Lee Appleyard.
Dodd was outboxed early on and even, at times, outfoxed by the skill and boxing ability of Appleyard, but he made it his own fight and took it on all three judges’ scorecards by margins of 117-113, 116-112 and 117-112.