Lee Haskins put in a tremendous effort against a world class opponent when he fought Stephane Jamoye in Belgium on Friday evening. Amongst other things their battle has been labelled a fight of the year contender and likened to the thrillers of Mickey Ward and Arturo Gatti.
The contest saw Haskins switch from his usual hit and move tactics to a more flat footed toe to toe style. This combined with Jamoye's aggressive style created a real back and forth contest. Haskins got the better of the challenger in the opening rounds, flooring him with a short left hand in the second round. However he was unable to capitalise and the Belgian came back in the third and fourth and fifth rounds. Haskins was forced to take a knee after a barrage of shots at the opening of the sixth round but then came back with a ferocious volley of punches which saw Jamoye almost stopped on his feet as the round ended.
The fight turned from a boxing match into a contest of who wants it most. Both men threw caution to the wind as the fight entered the seventh round. It seemed as though the Belgian had found a second wind in the seventh round but an undeterred Lee Haskins showed a steel resolve in fighting back with every ounce of power he had left. As the eighth round began it was evident that Haskins had expended a lot of energy. The younger man floored the champion with a solid body shot to the solar plexus within the first minute but the champion bravely rose to his feet. Although as they boxed on Lee seemed unable to recover, defiantly he launched an attack on his man desperately trying to tip the balance back in his favour. However he was caught with an exact replica of the punch that put him down initially and again the Bristolian hit the canvas. After rising twice he was unable to do so for a third time and the referee stopped the fight.
Heart breaking though it is for such a promising champion to be stopped away from home, we have nothing but praise for the courage and will power that Lee displayed in this fight. It truly was a champion's performance and one that he should be proud of.
Article created on Monday, 17 December 2012 13:14