The bell rings for Round 4 to begin. Sophie and Megan are both in unusual positions. The German is battling for a landmark win on American soil while her opponent has a known disadvantage in the form of a cut to protect.
Being 13-1 with 9 knockouts, Megan isn’t the most comfortable thinking of defense before attacking. She’d rather focus on finding a way to send Sophie to dreamland.
The discomfort shows as the blonde mixes up early punches to set up an attack with a very specific target in mind. She fakes the left hook in the middle but the American refuses to swallow the bait. Picasso feints a straight right to the eye, making the Brooklyn native raise her left hand. Then she digs downstairs to hit the side, at waist level.Click for HD
Sophie works patiently. She knows that Megan won’t “offer” the eye too easily at this point. A few hits in there might cause more serious bleeding or make it swell up. There are two knockout artists in the same ring, but one is unconventionally defensive because she knows what her counterpart wants to do.
The bitter orange varies her attacks upstairs and downstairs to make her opponent “forget” her objective. Nothing clean lands until she throws a more serious combination. A left to the midsection, which Megan blocks with her right elbow. Followed by a right to the side, met by the left elbow. Sophie quickly withdraws her hand and twists to throw upstairs. The American has too little time to lean away from the glove that clashes with her eye.
Jim: “Schumann is less direct that in the previous round, but no less effective. She’s going for the damaged left eye again after some tactical work.”
Warren: “She is surprisingly meticulous for a 21 year-old in her fourth fight. The promotion behind her isn’t just hype.”Click for HD
Shots taken in previous minutes, and the one that just landed, achieve the desired result. Megan feels that the cut above her eye is opening up and bleeding again. The sting is real as she backs up around the ring, chased by an aggressive and smiling German.
Megan thinks: “I gotta find a way to stop this chick. Vicious.”
Sophie: “You wanted me to stay in my lane. Now you’re in mine.”
Jim: “There is a bump over Thomas’ left eye. Not only is Schumann forging a lead, but she is causing the kind of physical damage that can be very rewarding in the later rounds.”
Warren: “Fitness may be the only question mark left because she’s been ticking boxes so far. Speed, power, ring generalship and sadistic behaviour are all coming together.”Click for HD
Akane: “Man. She’s methodical and brutal. I’m loving this. It’s looking so good.”
“This is boxing, not ballet,” says Alesia as she takes a look at Chelsea.
Chelsea: “Hey! I was a gymnast, not a ballerina!”
Alesia: “Can you do the Swan Lake?”
Chelsea: “Eff you!”
Akane: “Hahaha!”Click for HD
Confidence grows on the German’s side as she has her way with a slightly demoralised Megan. The American champion is used to going forward and having her hands doing the talking. Not to get hit in such targeted and malicious ways.
Megan only finds the resolve to score with something meaningful in the last 10 seconds, but what a shot that is. Sophie comes in with a single right hook but the brunette slips inside it and throws a short left hook that achieves two things. First, it blocks the incoming punch by obstructing the armpit. Second, her purple glove gets everything in the visitor’s right eye.
Megan: “An eye for an eye, bitch!”
The local crowd cheers for the first success in a while. A white flash “displays” inside Picasso’s eye, in addition to the pain.
Jim: “There is still some fight in Megan Thomas, who lands a solid left hook in her opponent’s right eye! Dare I say she was looking for payback time?”
Warren: “She probably was looking for that opportunity to counter, and she needed at least a clean shot on target to get back on track. It had been one-way traffic for a few minutes, which is always dangerous against a natural puncher like Schumann. Her punches are like drinks. One isn’t so bad, but a few will make you wobbly.”
The blonde withdraws and jabs her way through the dying seconds of the round as her eye is twitching, but with this round seemingly in the bag.Click for HD
In the red corner, Regina gives a little water to her protégée.
Regina: “That was nearly perfect. She got you with a hard hook late, so we know she is still dangerous. Let’s stay the course and keep moving around her before throwing shots. Keep mixing to avoid patterns. We can definitely win this. How’s the eye?”
Sophie: “It twitched for a bit. Now it’s okay, I think.”
As usual, Joseph isn’t too pleased in the blue corner.
Joseph: “Why are you letting this chick pick you apart? I told you to protect the eye, yes, but not to back up at all costs. You’re letting her pick her shots and she’s good at it. Throw more punches! Be active!”
A man approaches one of the guest tables tentatively and looks at Alesia.
“Frau Schumann? Can I get a selfie?”
She gets up and strikes a quick pose for the phone’s camera.
“Thanks! I saw you beat Taylor Grant here, and watched you win the world title against Orlova. Epic stuff!”
They shake hands and part ways quickly before the next round begins.
Ally obviously gets teased when she gets back to the table.
Akane: “Look at that. A celebrity!”
Chelsea: “The perks of being a world champion. Having fans across the globe.”Click for HD
Back to the broadcast desk.
Warren: “After four rounds of action, we have a German in command. Sophie Schumann is as poised as she is ruthless, honouring her reputation. I see her leading by two points in a mature performance. Can she keep this up and score a career-defining upset?”Click for HD