Friday, August 22, 2008
Boxing: Sutherland, Barnes Go Out
Right from the start of this middleweight semi-final, it didn't look good. Our man was hunching down, while James DeGale (GBR) danced around the ring, dictating the rhythm and flow of the match.
DeGale was 2-1 up at the end of the second round, but looked better than that. In the third, he picked off Sutherland for another six points. It was over, even with another round to go. Final score 10-3.
Sutherland was gracious in defeat and he will still come home with a bronze medal. You get the feeling it was one match too far - Sutherland did his best work in the match against Blanco, and returning to that level would have been difficult (whatever Billy Walsh may say).
Against China's Shiming Zou in the semi-finals of the light flyweight class, Paddy Barnes was always going to struggle, but the scoreline of 0-15 does not do justice to his efforts.
Shiming, the world amateur champion of 2005 and 2007, scored the first point in an energetic opening round. By the end of the third, Barnes was 0-8 down but never stopped trying to find his way through the long arms of the Chinese fighter. He deserved more from the judges.