posted on May, 27 2003 @ 09:00 AM
Margate-based Iranian Takaloo retained his WBU light middleweight title at Bethnal Green's York Hall on Saturday with a clear points victory over
Argentina-based Dominican Jose Rosa Gomez.
Gomez is no stranger to British fight fans, having sent Nottingham's IBO welterweight champ Jawaid Khaliq to the canvas last July before slipping to
unanimous points defeat.
Since then he has had five straight victories to his credit, four of them coming inside the distance, so Takaloo could not afford to take him lightly
as he marked time while waiting for a shot at one of the division's leading lights later this year.
The opening round was barely halfway through when a booming left to the jaw from Takaloo sent Gomez to the canvas and it is to the Dominican's credit
that he recovered sufficiently to be replying with body shots by the time the bell sounded.
The smaller Gomez came out for the second with renewed vigour and he shook the Margate man with an early left hook to the body. This though only
served to enrage Takaloo and the session ended with both throwing huge punches in an attempt to force and early finish.
By the third both men were landing haymakers and it looked unlikely that the contest would run its full distance, especially when Gomez emerged from a
particularly bruising spell with a nasty gash under his right eye.
Despite his wound the tough little challenger ploughed forward relentlessly and Takaloo was forced to work off the back foot for long periods though
Gomez was far from economical, a large percentage of his shots missing the mark.
To the surprise of many the contest did run its full length with Gomez looking a shade stronger towards the end but Takaloo maintained his authority
throughout and fully deserved the decision of the three ringside judges who scored the contest 120-107, 120-107 and 118-109.
Takaloo now looks set to face a big-name opponent later this year but says he will leave that decision to manager Frank Warren.
He said afterwards: "I would have liked to have pleased the audience but he was a hard man with such a hard head and tonight I just had to win it for