By Charles Brun: Anthony Yarde didn’t want his fight with IBF/WBC/WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev to be stopped in the eighth round last Saturday night after he’d been knocked down, then bombarded with shots one after another, resulting in him needing to be saved by his corner.
In the aftermath of the fight, Yarde (23-3, 22 KOs) beamed with pride, with his moral victory of having been competitive for stretches against the unbeaten monster Beterbiev (19-0, 19 KOs).
Was Beterbiev hurt in the fight?
Yarde said that he “hurt” Beterbiev a couple of times. This writer didn’t see Beterbiev hurt. What I did see was the sly old fox Beterbiev playing possum, moving out of range after getting nailed by Yarde, then going to the ropes to lure him in.
“I’ll be back. I hurt him a couple of times. I’ve never seen him cut from a punch. I’ve never seen him rocked & hurt,” said Yarde to BT Sport about his belief that he’d rocked Beterbiev on two occasions.
Yarde might have taken more punishment than I realized in the fight because he’s coming up with dream-like stuff, saying that he had Beterbiev hurt. Frankly, I didn’t see it, and I’ve watched the fight twice, even in slow motion, and Beterbiev never looked hurt.
At that point, whatever successes Yarde had were quickly reversed, with Beterbiev bombing him with shots, hitting him at will at close range.
What Beterbiev exposed in Yarde’s game during those events was that he had no inside game and was a punching bag. If Yarde had any sense about him, he would have avoided fighting Beterbiev in close because he was getting the worst of it each time.
Yarde didn’t want the fight stopped
“I’m ambitious. I’ve got a winner’s mentality. I really wanted to win. I thought, ‘I got him,’” said Anthony Yarde to BT Sport after his loss to Artur Beterbiev.
“It got called off, and I was like, ‘Nah man,‘ but Tunde Ajayi and my team, they love me, so they’re seeing something I’m not,” said Yarde.
It’s a good thing for Yarde that his coach Tunde did stop it when he did in the eighth because he was about to be poleaxed by Beterbiev and likely would have been put to sleep by him.
“He said, As a professional, that’s the hardest fight he’s ever had. He’s a good fighter and tricky as well. That’s why he’s knocked out so many of his opponents,” said Yarde about Beterbiev.
Yarde should kid himself. Beterbiev was just being kind by saying that he was the “hardest fight” of his career because he’s had tougher ones against these fighters: Oleksandr Gvozdyk, Marcus Browne, Callum Johnson and Adam Deines.