Otniel Hembapu Windhoek-Namibia’s former triple world champion Julius ‘Blue Machine’ Indongo’s baffling second-round knockout defeat to American young boxing sensation Regis Prograis during their Interim WBC super lightweight world title fight over the weekend left many boxing pundits, as well as the general public, with mixed emotions and reactions. Social media platforms and various international boxing shows were abuzz with mixed opinions and reactions, with many questioning the readiness, mental and physical state of Indongo ahead of the mega fight while many others simply called on the 35-year-old Indongo to consider gracefully hanging up his gloves. Frankly speaking, the Indongo that fought against Prograis at the weekend, as well as the Indongo that puzzlingly lost against America’s Terence Crawford last year, is unexplainably worlds apart from the calm cat-footed, hard-punching and explosive Indongo that once made Namibia proud in 2016 when he travelled to Moscow to dethrone IBF junior welterweight champion Eduard Troyanovsky four seconds into the first round with a jaw-cracking left hand. The jelly-legged and glass-chinned Indongo that lost to 29-year-old Prograis at the weekend is not the same Indongo that trekked to Glasgow, Scotland, last year to mercilessly punish and outpoint Scotsman Ricky Burns to unify the IBF/WBA world titles. The Indongo the world watched over the weekend lacked aggression, lacked elegance, looked disorganized and looked frightened by the stocky Prograis, and was not composed at all. To bluntly sum it up, Indongo appeared like a greenhorn in the business of trading leather, as his punches were off target and lacked any power and it became evident that his jaws cannot take big punches. Speaking of lack of awareness, Indongo allowed himself to get trapped, exposed and hanging on for dear life on the ropes where he was sagging under Prograis’ furious onslaught. Indongo was slow, his timing was bad and Prograis caught him with sloppy but somewhat powerful shots. Strangely, towards the end of the opening round, the Namibian’s tank appeared to be depleting fast and out of steam, as he rushed backwards, grabbing and groping at Prograis to avoid any further harm. Prograis (21-0, 18 KO) dropped Indongo (22-2, 11 KO) at the end of the first round, and then three more times in the second round, with the Namibian failing to fully reboot his legs and end of the fight came at 2:54 of round two, as Indongo was no longer able to withstand a further punch. With all sorts of speculations rife after the fight, Indongo’s new American manager Michael Carter took to his Facebook page to clear the air and set the record straight, as many suggested Carter and his camp might dump the Namibian after his sluggish defeat. “To all of the family, fans, and friends of Julius Indongo, Julius has been released from the hospital after undergoing multiple exams for head trauma. As of this time, medically, he is fine and should recover completely from his injuries. As you can imagine, he is emotionally down right now, as anyone would be. To become a world champion of anything, especially in boxing, there is something special about a person which really has nothing to do with their skills in the sport…That’s why I know Julius will pick himself up and become even more a source of pride to Namibians, even if it is outside the ring. “Whether we ever see him in the ring again is really not important in the eyes of Team Indongo. What’s more important is that he recovers completely. If he chooses to walk away from boxing, we will support his decision to the fullest. If not, we will support him as well. Nothing that happened last night (Friday night) can take away from what he has already accomplished inside the boxing ring. So, if this indeed is the end of his career, our team is nothing but proud of our Namibian brother who has represented his country with the highest level of consideration… This contract will not be terminated, Indongo will make his own decision. I will support whatever decision he makes. His own discernment will dictate his circumstance,” said the Omaha-based promoter. “I felt his punches, he could’t punch, he couldn’t hurt me. I got a little reckless, but I got the job done, I can’t complain. I haven’t been able to show my full arsenal yet. I haven’t had an opponent that can bring it out of me. I get paid the same thing for the first round or the 12th round, so I might as well get them out early,” said Prograis, who now holds the interim WBC title, with the full belt to be decided next weekend between Jose Ramirez and Amir Imam.
2018-03-12 13:00:17 6 months ago