Home Boxing News Tim Tszyu bullies Brian Mendoza, dares Jermell Charlo to face him

Tim Tszyu bullies Brian Mendoza, dares Jermell Charlo to face him

Tim Tszyu. Photo credit: Zain Mohammed/No Limit Boxing

It was billed as the toughest test of his career but by the time WBO junior welterweight champion Tim Tszyu 24-0 (17) got through with Brian Mendoza 22-3 (16) he had made it look easy.

The 28-year-old Australian was making the first defence of the world title he inherited from former undisputed 154-pound champion Jermell Charlo 35-2-1 (19) when the 33-year-old native of Houston, Texas was stripped of the belt for choosing to face undisputed super middleweight champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez 60-2-2 (39) instead of him last month.

Tszyu was returning to the Gold Coast Convention Centre in Broadbeach, Queensland for the second time this year following his one-round blowout of Mexican champion Carlos Ocampo 35-5 (23) in June.

This time around Tszyu was extended the full 12-round distance for the third time in his career.

The first four rounds were fought at a measured pace with the 29-year-old Mendoza of Albuquerque, New Mexico cautiously pressing and Tszyu boxing within himself.

Tszyu began to increase the pressure in the fifth and by the midway point of the contest it appeared to be a fairly even fight but with the champion taking the ascendancy. Hard left jabs and well-timed left hook had left a mouse below Mendoza’s right eye.

A pair of uppercuts from Tszyu rocked Mendoza in the seventh but he weather the storm to survive the round.

Things only got worse for the challenger from there. Tszyu continued to mix up his offense upstairs and downstairs but Mendoza wouldn’t budge. He showed a tremendous chin to withstand the punishment that kept coming his way.

The power and accuracy of Tszyu was apparent in the last half of the fight and there wasn’t a round where Mendoza did not look in distress.

But try as he might, Tszyu simply couldn’t put the iron-chinned American away. The hometown hero took his foot off the gas in the final round, perhaps resigned to the fact he would not be able to knock out Mendoza tonight.

When the judges’ scorecards were tallied Tszyu was declared the winner by unanimous decision with scores of 116-112, 117-111 and 116-111.

“Man, he’s tough, he’s crafty, he’s slick, he’s got power,” Tszyu said. “He’s world class for a reason, he’s just behind me.”

Tszyu wasted no time calling out Charlo after the fight, who still retains the WBC, WBA and IBF junior welterweight belts.

“Charlo, where you at? Where you at buddy?” Tszyu said.

“In his delusional head, he’s probably saying he’s going to beat me. Come get it.”

Asked if he thought Charlo would be up for the fight, he had no doubt.

“For sure man,” Tszyu said. “He fought Canelo, the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. He is the best at 154 right now, but let’s prove to everyone who really is the king of this division.”