Maxi Hughes continued an impressive resurgence in the sport by holding on to his IBO lightweight title in a twelve-round contest with Kid Galahad. In the aftermath, he’s revealed marks that suggest some not-so-clean tactics.
The fight was a close one that never quite caught fire. It was a scrappy affair, too, with referee Marcus McDonnell in regular dialogue with Galahad about his work on the inside. He warned the Sheffield based fighter about holding, pushing, and, the final straw before a point was taken in the tenth, leading with his head.
The deduction from Galahad’s final tally was a crucial one in a bout that was back and forth for the duration. Ultimately, Hughes won with two scorecards in his favour and one calling it a draw.
Following his title defence, he took to Twitter to inform fans of what he called ‘dark arts tactics’ that may not have been noticeable on the broadcast.
“I’ve been nipped under [my] arm for twelve rounds. A tactic I’ve never heard of, never seen, but I can tell you – it really hurts.”
Some dark arts tactics here, nipped under the arm for 12 rounds. pic.twitter.com/oBpRhopV8T
— Maxi Hughes (@BOXERMAXIHUGHES) September 25, 2022
In a sport where the upper hand is so vital, fighters have been known to skirt the referee’s discretion closely in order to gain it. If Hughes is right and Galahad was pinching his skin, this is a relatively obscure way to do it.
Galahad is now dealing with two successive losses, and it’s unclear when or with whom he’ll begin to build back up. The fight was his first at lightweight. He looked to handle the extra bulk well, and seemed to think the fight was his when the decision was announced. Along with his team, he exited the ring quickly.
For the winner, as his bruises heal, the Yorkshire man seeks to make a big-money fight across the pond, backed by promoter Eddie Hearn. The potential list of names includes Ryan Garcia.