No Contest? No Argument!
Having been teed up so perfectly as the ideal crossroads match-up, it was a great shame that an accidental clash of heads would see to it that Rendall Munroe and Scott Quigg were not able fulfill the potential their showdown had promised this Saturday night in the Manchester Velodrome.
For the 23-year-old Quigg, it was a huge step up, but one that could throw him into the fringes of the world picture at Super-Bantam. For Munroe, once vanquished by Toshiaki Nishioka, it was a career lifeline.
The fight was geared up for fireworks, and the short-lasting action seemed to fit the pre-fight description. Both appeared confident, with Munroe walking out relaxed in his trademark sunglasses/hat combination, while the younger man seemed positively gleeful at the opportunity to give a lesson to the old warrior opposite him.
Quigg appeared sharp in the first round, boxing on the back foot and firing a right over the top as Munroe walked in. Munroe, however, seemed unperturbed by Quigg’s movement, landing effectively to the body and stalking his smaller rival.
The second round saw Quigg step up his efforts, landing his jab and controlling the distance. Turning Munroe and using his fleetness of foot, he limited Munroe’s ability to get inside and use his larger frame to his own advantage.
With both having had a good look at each other in the opening stanzas, the fight was delicately poised, shaping potentially into a domestic British classic, when the unforeseen head-clash occurred. As innocuous as it was brutal, the coming together resulted in a wide gash on Munroe’s right eyebrow, a cut that the ringside doctor correctly ruled fight-ending without a second’s thought.
For Quigg, his coming-out party was spoiled, though with the upside of his career still ahead of him, there is nothing to particularly worry about. The greatest shame perhaps lies at the feet of Rendall Munroe. Having switched promoters and seeing his career stall in the wake of his gallant but ultimately unsuccessful world-title challenge in Japan, the man known as “the boxing bin-man” was “bin-man” no-more as he gave up the day job to focus on a second chance at the highest level. For him, at 32, chances like these are few and far between and the blood seeping from the open wound above his right eye will be nothing compared to the feeling of frustration he will no doubt stew upon until his next ring outing.
Their promoter Ricky Hatton effectively swore by a rematch, something Quigg and Munroe also seemed intent on in their post-fight interviews. It certainly makes sense, and as such there can be little doubt that these two men can prepare themselves to meet at the crossroads again sometime. The sooner the better.