Boxing pundits in the US weren’t fully sold on Tim Tszyu’s unanimous decision win last night but the Aussie star drew plenty of praise for his victory over Takeshi Inoue.
Tszyu retained his WBO Global and WBO Asia-Pacific super-welterweight titles and won convincingly on points, with the judges scoring it 119-108, 120-107 and 120-107.
It was his first real test against a world ranked opponent and further pushed his claims for a title shot at WBO champion Brian Castano’s belt.
While some American boxing purists weren’t totally convinced that Tszyu is ready to take his talents to Las Vegas, most of the commentary was positive.
Tszyu rocks Inoue in fifth round
CBS Sports analyst Brian Campbell, described Tszyu as a “monster”, adding that it was “time to bring the show to the world stage.”
Legendary commentator Al Bernstein, posted: “Going 12 is a benefit for the future” regarding the Aussie’s points win.
“A one-sided demonstration that he is ready for the world title scene” wrote senior boxing journalist for Sky Sports James Dielhenn.
Dielhenn went further suggesting that the Australian’s streak of stoppages ended only by “his opponent’s toughness” and highlighted how Tszyu “pulverised Inoue to the body”.
Tszyu catches Inoue off-guard early
The Ring’s Diego Morilla also pointed to Inoue’s toughness as the reason behind it going the distance.
He said Tszyu offered a “promise he couldn’t deliver” on the sixth round KO prediction but added: “There is only one culprit for that, and that’s his foe and his granite chin.
“Punch statistics wouldn’t do justice to his performance.”
However, Boxing News 24’s Jeff Aronow was a bit more critical of Tszyu’s overall output. He said Tszyu needs to correct some things if he’s to make a successful trip to the mecca of boxing, Las Vegas.
“In Tszyu’s case, he looked cautious and loaded up on body shots and threw jabs to the head,” Aronow pointed out.
“Inoue was there to be knocked out if Tszyu had relentlessly attacked him, but he didn’t seem to want to do that.
“Perhaps Tszyu was worried about getting clipped or gassing out.
“Overall, it wasn’t an outstanding performance from Tszyu that he needed to show that he belongs among the top guys at 154, as it clearly showed that he needs more experience before tackling the big dogs in the division.”
While there’s always going to be a mixed reaction to a 12-round decision win, it’s clear the US is very in tune with Tszyu’s career.
While his father Kostya made a huge splash in America, lifting the family name to dizzying heights, according to News Corp’s Paul Kent, Tim’s name is starting to gain traction without his father.
Speaking on last night’s Main Event fight coverage, Kent spoke of a conversation he had with legend Jeff Fenech after a recent trip to the US.
“Jeff just got back from America and he said that every gym he walked into, they were asking about Tim Tszyu,” Kent said.
“They know of him not just through his father, they’ve watched what he’s done, they’ve seen his progression.
“Fighters know fighters, and they see him at No.1. The questions to Jeff weren’t ‘is he genuine?’ … they wanted to know all about him.
“They have already accepted how good a fighter he is.”
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