Anthony Crolla forced to settle for draw after clash of heads with Gamaliel Diaz
Last Updated: 14/09/14 7:19am
Anthony Crolla endured frustration in his pursuit of a world title shot as his lightweight clash with Gamaliel Diaz ended in a technical draw.
Diaz was left with a badly cut eye following a clash of heads in the third round and the fight ended in an unsatisfactory result, with the Mexican unable to continue.
This was a bitterly disappointing conclusion for Crolla, who has been chasing a fight against one of the division’s belt holders, and missed the chance to move even further up the rankings.
I’m not speaking bad of Gamaliel Diaz. It’s a technical draw, the doctor ruled he was unable to continue, but I felt like he was happy with that.
The experienced Diaz had shown his class with some eye-catching punches in the opening minutes, but Crolla answered with a string of stiff jabs.
Both men opted to exchange jabs for much of the second round, with Diaz proving equally accurate, and he caught Crolla with a crisp uppercut in the third. But just moments before the end of the round, a clash of heads opened up the wound over Diaz’s eye.
He was clearly unsettled by the gaping cut under his eyebrow and refused to come out for the fourth, bringing a premature end to the bout.
Speaking afterwards, Crolla questioned whether Diaz had lost his appetite for battle.
He told Sky Sports: “I’m not speaking bad of Gamaliel Diaz. It’s a technical draw, the doctor ruled he was unable to continue, but I felt like he was happy with that.“
Promoter Eddie Hearn echoed Crolla’s view, saying: “I’ll speak to the doctor because if the fighter chooses not to continue then I don’t believe it’s a technical draw.
“If the referee stops the fight on the advice of the doctor then it is a technical draw, but it looked like he didn’t want to come out. I think he was happy to accept the technical draw.”
Earlier in the night, Scotty Cardle blasted out Kirk Goodings inside the first round to pave the way for a clash against British champion Terry Flanagan.
In another British title eliminator, Sam Eggington halted Denton Vassell in the eighth round to earn a possible shot at lightweight belt holder Frankie Gavin.