Tim Tszyu Turns Away Brian Mendoza in Australia


By David A. Avila

Aussie strongman Tim Tszyu hammered away at Brian Mendoza’s adamantium chin and though he could not floor the upstart from New Mexico he proved victorious in keeping the WBO super welterweight title by unanimous decision on Sunday in Australia.

In a battle between sluggers with resilient chins Tszyu (24-0, 17 KOs) proved too strong for Mendoza (22-3, 16 KOs) in front of a large vocal crowd in Broadbeach, Queensland. It was Tszyu’s first defense of the WBO title.

After a conservative first four rounds, things opened up as Tszyu increased the tempo and battered away at Mendoza’s vaunted chin. The fighter who knocked out Sebastian Fundora and Jeison Rosario to snatch this title opportunity found the son of the great Kostya Tszyu a much different challenge.

He never could put a serious dent in the Aussie.

Tszyu seldom used jabs, instead choosing to chip away with lead rights and left hooks. Mendoza tried countering but was unable to find many openings. He did find success with body shots but seldom worked that area.

Though neither fighter was dominant the first six rounds, it was clear Tszyu was the busier and more effective puncher.

In the seventh round Tszyu completely took over the fight with uppercuts the favorite choice of his weapons. Three slicing uppercuts connected and staggered Mendoza. The Las Vegas-trained fighter did not go down, but it was close.

Mendoza tried everything he could against the pressure style of Tszyu. But though he connected, he never could hurt the strong Aussie fighter. And Tszyu was unable to knock down or knock out the tough New Mexican fighter.

“He was tough, he was crafty, he’s got power,” Tszyu said.

After 12 rounds all three judges scored in favor of Tszyu 116-112, 116-111, 117-111.

Tszyu truly believes undisputed super welterweight champion Jermell Charlo will meet him in the prize ring.

“Of course he will. He fought the best pound for pound fighter in the world “Canelo,” said Tszyu of Charlo’s fight against Saul Alvarez. “He probably thinks in his delusional head, he’s going to beat me. Come get it. Come get it.”

Other Bouts

Sam Goodman (16-0) defeated Miguel Flores (25-5-1) by unanimous decision in a 12-round featherweight fight. Flores was penalized twice for alleged low blows.

Jackson Jon England (15-2) won by split decision over Nathaniel May (22-4) in a back-and-forth super featherweight war after 10 rounds.