Former world middleweight world champion Daniel Geale won an important bout for domestic bragging rights, and took a step towards earning another title shot, with a unanimous 12-round points win over Jarrod Fletcher on Wednesday.
Former IBF and WBA Super title holder Geale (31-3, 16 KOs) dominated the 12-round bout at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion, capturing the IBF Pan Pacific and interim WBO Asia Pacific belts.
The Sydney-based Tasmanian finished a decisive 119-108 winner on the cards of all three judges.
Geale put Queenslander Fletcher (18-3, 10 KOs) down in the fifth round, landing a strong right and a follow-up left.
From there he seemed to wear Fletcher down, but couldn’t find the finishing blow against a former amateur teammate he has sparred hundreds of rounds against.
The two fast-handed fighters produced a number of crowd-pleasing quickfire exchanges, but Geale delivered the more consistent and effective work.
Fletcher landed some good single shots during the fight and a nice right with about 30 seconds to go and but his opponent merely stuck out his chin and invited him to land another shot, which he wasn’t able to do.
“It wasn’t my most polished performance,” Geale said.
“Jarrod and I have done hundreds of rounds and he’s a skilful fighter.”
Geale said he would like to fight any of the world champions, especially WBC king Miguel Cotto.
Earlier, NSW Origin rugby league captain Paul Gallen has made it two wins from as many professional fights after a dislocated shoulder forced an anti-climactic first-round end to his heavyweight bout with former Cronulla Sharks teammate Anthony Watts.
The bout lasted 88 seconds before referee Mick Heafey called it off because Watts was unable to continue
It also took just 88 seconds for young Sydney Roosters NRL player Willis Meehan to knock out Alofa Solitua and extend his pro record to 2-0 with 2 KOs.
Queensland cruiserweight Mark Flanagan and Victorian super middleweight Jake Carr each retained their respective national titles with a unanimous points win over a NSW challenger.
Flanagan overcame Shane Quinn on the way to retaining his strap, while undefeated Carr shaded previously unbeaten Renold Quinlan in a fight featuring plenty of exciting inside exchanges.