Gomez Comments on Concepcion Victory
Just back from his first trip across the pond, a triumphant Alfonso Gomez spoke about his win last weekend over Martin Concepcion.
Gomez scored a TKO in the 7th round of the fight, which was one of eight matches held March 30 in Newcastle, England, billed as the first annual Contender UK vs. USA “Sugar Ray Leonard Cup.” Gomez admitted to feeling frustrated in the early rounds, wanting to get aggressive but remaining wary of the punching power of Concepcion. “I thought he was going to use his size and power advantages to pressure and tire me out, but to my surprise he tried to box me and use his jab,” Gomez said. “That threw me off a little bit because I was prepared for a war on the inside.”
“I knew I could knock him out,” Gomez continued. “I just needed to get the punches in. I used my jab and better skills to connect, but I didn’t want to rush in to finish him because of his power, which I felt in the 4th round when he caught me with a good left hook.” Concepcion also had apparently done his homework, which added to the challenge.
“I’m known for my body shot, the left hook to the liver, and for the entire fight he was walking to the right with his hands close to his stomach,” Gomez said. “I could tell he had studied me.”Ultimately, Gomez was able to take him out in the seventh.
“I got him with a jab and a left upper cut. He turned around, so I rushed in and hit him again, and the referee waved it off,” Gomez said. Gomez felt comfortable throughout the fight, and his corner, led by his father and trainer, Alfonso Gomez, Sr., assured him he was ahead on points. “I was aware I was winning. Once in a while Concepcion would rush in, but I felt relaxed and composed, and when he would come toward me I was able to be defensive and keep moving.”
The atmosphere at the Metroradio Arena increased the excitement, with the English audience more supportive of the American fighter than might be expected.
“The English crowd was great. It seemed like they were about 50-50 cheering for me versus Martin,” Gomez says. “They chanted for me. It was amazing.” Gomez was happy to score a decisive victory, despite having to quickly adjust to time zone and climate differences and to take part in a number of pre-fight events after his arrival in the UK. Although his record shows a win and a draw in 2006, he was not fully satisfied with the quality of his performances last year. However, his win against Concepcion feels like vindication, and gives him momentum for what he plans to be a busy 2007.
“What more can I ask for?” Gomez said. “Even with all the distractions, I was able to do exactly what I wanted.”
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