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Mundine Cruises Past Rigoberto Alvarez, Eyes Trout

By Jake Donovan

Anthony Mundine had his way in easily outpointing Rigoberto Alvarez in their 12-round bout Wednesday evening at the Entertainment Centre in Newcastle, NSW, Australia.

Scores were 117-111 (twice) and a “what fight were you watching” 114-113 tally for Mundine, who now eyes a shot against American titlist Austin Trout.

Mundine was simply too quick and too busy for the visiting Alvarez, who all but refused to let his hands go and was forced to contend with a cut over his left eye from the fourth round onward.

Alvarez’ best success came when he went to the body, but didn’t throw often enough to slow down Mundine or put much of a dent in the growing deficit on the scorecards.

A game changer for both fighters came in the fourth round, when Mundine scored with a right hand to draw blood from above Alvarez’ left eye. The sight of blood would seemingly create a sense of urgency for both fighters, but the opposite turned out to be the case. Alvarez waited for openings that were never there, while Mundine treated the cut like a bullseye and peppered his foe with jabs for the duration of the fight.

Seemingly way up on the scorecards heading down the stretch, Mundine eased off of the gas just enough to allow Alvarez to enjoy mild late round success. It wasn’t a full throttle attack by any means, but Alvarez made some noise with an uppercut in the 10th round, while Mundine was content to move and fight behind a high guard.

The strategy was enough for Mundine to control the tempo and win the fight with room to spare, as Alvarez offered nothing to make him change his strategy at any point.

Mundine improves to 43-4 (25KO) with the win, his third straight since suffering a humiliating fifth round knockout at the hands of Garth Wood late last year. Included among the win streak is a win over Wood in their rematch earlier this year.

It is now two straight losses for Alvarez, who falls to 27-4 (20KO) in what was just his second fight outside of his native Mexico. This loss comes on the heels of his having fallen way short against Austin Trout earlier this year in their vacant title fight. At age 33 and still lacking a career defining win, the Mexican will just have to be content with living in the shadow of his younger and more talented brother Saul “Canelo” Alvarez.

Meanwhile, Mundine recognizes that at age 36 and as vulnerable as he is in any given fight, not much time is left to make a statement in an up and down career.

Talks have begun to surface for a showdown with Trout, including rumors of the bout serving as a feature attraction on an American network. Negotiations are a long way off from that becoming a reality, especially with Trout still slated to make a November title defense in a bout that will air live on Showtime’s “Shobox” series.

Mundine has previously reigned as a super middleweight titlist, picking up a vacant belt in 2003 with a 12-round decision win over Antwun Echols. The reign was short lived, making just one successful defense before suffering an upset points loss to Manny Siaca.

Additional losses at the championship level have also come against Mikkel Kessler and most notably Sven Ottke, where Mundine was winning the fight before being knocked out cold in the 10th round by the feather fisted German.

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected]
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