Originally written on The Queensbury Rules  |  Last updated 9/10/14
90
Cardiff locomotive Gary Buckland chugged past an impassive Paul Truscott in Sheffield, England, on Saturday, dropping him twice (once officially) en route to a commanding unanimous decision win that was scored 119-109, 120-108 and 108-110. Buckland strolled through the first defence of his BBofC junior lightweight crown and will now attempt to broach European championship class whereas Truscott, 25, who appeared old and staid despite his relative youth, looked like a fighter who should be persuaded about the merits of a life away from being punched in the face.

It had been a nightmarish battle for Truscott to make weight on Friday, one that required multiple attempts and which rendered him an emaciated, sunken-eyed wreck. Badly dehydrated and without the luxury of a Victor Conte type on hand to prescribe a magic potion (as the disgraced Californian whistleblower reportedly did for lightweight Brandon Rios after “Bam Bam” had blundered into similar quicksand on the eve of his match with John Murray in December), Truscott’s condition was concerning to say the least. In an age where science continues to invade sport, often nefariously, it seems quite remarkable that boxers are permitted to enter a prize ring in such a depleted state which could, you feel, be considered against measures far more sophisticated than those of a weighing scale.

Whether a fully functioning Truscott would have fared any better is something we’ll never know. Armed with a fine jab and little else, he was perfect game for the 25-year-old Buckland. One imagines that if the Middlesbrough man were to stand alongside Buckland’s favourite heavy bag in the gym, his head would map perfectly to the soft spot affected by Buckland’s right hand.

Buckland, 129 ½, could barely catch his breath before the opener, so glad was he to be resuming battle and he immediately set fire to Truscott, 130, with range-finding power shots that sent the challenger into reverse. Buckland, with his pet punch now calibrated, connected with a peach of a right hand in round 2 that rattled Truscott’s jaw and flung him backwards into the strands. Only the ropes prevented him from a trip to the canvas, however, referee Victor Loughlin (Scotland) fluffed the knockdown call which allowed Buckland, unperturbed, to pen Truscott into a corner and administer a beating for the remainder of the session.

Truscott, 18-3 (3), pumped out a solid jab yet had little else besides. Buckland, 25-2 (8), a perpetual burrowing, rolling and hooking machine did as he pleased and continually worked over an opponent who seemed lost in a state of deep reverie. The champion dropped his man for an official count in the 10th with a short left hook into his ribcage. Truscott seemed mortified as he rose. His bottom lip quivered uncontrollably -- a sign that his body could no longer help him. Loughlin hovered in close attendance for the remainder of the round and continued to lurk throughout the 11th. As the third man readied himself for the right moment to pull the plug, Truscott, to his great credit but also his detriment, kept firing back right on the point of being rescued.

Remarkably, he managed to rally over the remaining four minutes. He defended well and flashed a well executed counter right, which he would roll into with his chin tucked behind his left shoulder, yet it was all to no avail. It was a sigh of relief, rather than a roar of approval, that greeted the final bell.

Television: Sky Sports

Promoter: Hatton Promotions
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