Back and forth

Mechelle and Emma waste no time in getting reacquainted

The championship fight gets underway with the bell ringing. There’s not as much of a feeling out period between the two fighters – the only thing that has really changed between the two is the outfits. Early on in the fight, it’s clear that the champion is the sharper fighter.

‘The Pretty Warrior’ fights strongly at her preferred range, not allowing Emma to build any momentum. Mechelle works behind a good jab, varying the timing, and then using the jab to unleash a right hand behind it.

A perfect example of that comes nearly halfway through the round, as a classic and emphatically delivered 1-2 lands clean, knocking Emma’s head around as her attempt to counter is ill advised and far too late.

Laila: “A smooth start for the champion so far as she has McGale looking like she is a step slow in this title rematch. Gauthier isn’t a huge puncher, but she does get things done with accumulation. She’s started the process early.”

enlarge

The remainder of the round doesn’t change in tone – it’s the champion on top as she seems to have found her rhythm quickly in the fight. Emma does seem tentative, not willing to mix it up with the champion who defeated her not that long ago.

The champion shows some clever adjustments as well, being able to hit Emma flush even as Emma tries to avoid a punch, Mechelle is able to make the adjustment and get her orange gloves on target with some pop behind them too. After taking the hit, Emma backs away, unsure of what her response needs to be at this moment.

Laila: “While this round was not a shutout, this was by all means a round firmly in the hands of Mechelle Gauthier, who seemed to have picked up where she left off from the last fight, while Emma McGale seems to be either taking it easy or she is suffering from some ring rust here.”

Coach Blohm fires up

DING!

The first round ends and the fighters go back to their corners. We focus on Emma McGale’s corner.

Sandra: “Sit. That was a shit round and I can’t figure out why you looked so good in training and then look like a different fighter out there.”

Emma: “I couldn’t…”

Sandra: “This isn’t time for your excuses. This is the time for me to tell you what to do. So sit and nod. Understand.”

Emma nods.

Sandra: “I understand that it is mentally hard to face someone that knocked you around the ring not that long ago. But I need you to know that is in the past. That has already happened. You have nothing to lose in this fight, Emma. What’s the worst that could happen! She knock you out again? She’s already done that! Go out there and fight loose, like you have nothing to lose. Do you get that?”

Emma: “Yes, coach.”

Sandra: “Good, don’t be afraid of this girl, she’s pretty, but you are better.”

enlarge

A competitive round

The start of the second round sees a far more aggressive and assured Emma McGale as she pushes the tempo of the round right from the start. Mechelle takes a few punches from ‘The Peach’ before she is truly able to react to this new tactic from the Toronto based fighter.

Before Mechelle is able to get her bearings back in the fight, Emma fakes a jab and then drops to her left and throws a right hand over the top. Mechelle’s quick left hook that she had wanted to throw in reply only opens her up for the incoming grey leather.

PISH!

Laila: “A big shot from Emma McGale as she catches Mechelle Gauthier a bit flatfooted. That was a punch with some serious intent behind it and is the kind of action we expect from McGale – a bit clever and surely punishing.”

enlarge

The second round proves to be a much more intense round than the first. Both fighters get right up into range and exchange with each other, hoping to land that telling blow. The exchanges are so close and so tight it’s nearly impossible to see who is winning, but its certainly exciting for the fans.

The emphatic shot at the end of the round comes from a determined champion who will not let herself be run over. As Emma tries to escape to her right after an exchange, Mechelle tracks her with a scything right hand that catches her high near the temple, a deeply unpleasant place to be hit as it can easily effect your equilibrium. Emma does retreat after taking this punch, but she’s not effected too much.

The round ends shortly after without further incident.

Laila: “A wild round ends with the champion putting her stamp on it. It was a very close round between the two fighters, but perhaps that late punch from Mechelle Gauthier will tip it in her favour. Nonetheless, this was an enthralling round for any boxing fan as the these two threw leather with little regard to their own health.”

The Peach finds her stride

The third round starts with almost a partial truce as both fighters acknowledge that they cannot possibly keep up the pace of the second round for much longer.

The slower pace of the round does allow Emma to really work on getting in close to Mechelle and using her physical strength to create openings for punches. Without an active jab, Mechelle ends up in close quarters with the Torontonian, and has trouble matching up with her physicality.

Emma relishes pushing Mechelle into the ropes, leaning on her and making it a tough, physical fight. And she sneaks some decent short punches in as well, including a roasting right to the ribs that makes the champion groan.

Laila: “Though many would pay to be up close with Emma McGale, she is showing that in a boxing ring it can be a deeply unpleasant place to be, as the challenger is adept at pushing you out of position and wearing you out by making you bear her weight. She’s a sneaky technician when working in tight spots and Gauthier will do well to avoid them.”

Mechelle finds it quite difficult to pay heed to Laila’s advice, as the combination of the intense last round and the fatigue of having to fight Emma in close in this round makes it difficult to do much. Emma finds it hard to create opening for punches, so she decides to send a little message of her own, using her forearm to push Mechelle back against the ropes.

Victoria: “Stop!”

Mechelle thinks: Is this chick crazy?

Emma thinks: Just a bit of intimidation factor. I’m stronger and you know it.  I’ll do this to you all fight.

Laila Ali: “Emma McGale takes a page right out of the veteran playbook of Steffi Slater. It’s not legal what she just did, but such an infraction, if not repeated, is unlikely to draw anything more than a warning from the referee.”

Intimidated or not, Mechelle finds it hard to get traction in the third round as Emma seems to be finding her feet in the fight. The challenge is paying particular attention to working the body, as Mechelle’s more upright stance is allowing Emma to get low and away from Mechelle’s counters.

Towards the end of the round, Emma has her best success of the round, moving away from a left hook from the champion and firing a vicious uppercut into the midsection of Montrealer. The solar plexus of the champion compresses…

Mechelle: “Oof!”

Mechelle retreats, clearly hurt from that punch, but she is experienced enough to waste the rest of the round, even though she knows it surely means a lost round for her.

Emma thinks: I’m having success to the body – gonna keep going back until you can prove you can stop me… or you can’t take any more.

Laila: “An impressive round for Emma McGale as she was clearly able to make it the type of fight that she clearly wants to fight. The champion hasn’t really been able to impose herself and the physical strength of the challenger is proving decisive so far. Her body work has really impressed.”

The champion reels

We go to the corners after three rounds are in the books.

In the red corner, the challenger and her team are quite happy.

Sandra: “Excellent, you are fighting loose and confident. That is what I want to see from you. And those body shots are great. Keep the mental pressure on her too.”

Emma: “Is there anything you want me to do?”

Sandra: “Keep making this an in-close battle, but watch for the uppercut. That is how she equalized with you last time. Stay close and don’t give her the space to punch. Your defence comes from controlling her posture and not letting her get her leverage.”

Emma: “I feel like she can’t stop me when I go to the body.”

Sandra: “I agree. Keep mixing it up though, a predictable fighter is a fighter that can be countered. I believe the fight is even through three, but they may give the champion the rounds, so we need to dominate the next few.”

Emma: “Gotcha.”

In the blue corner, the champion is trying to recover from an unpleasant round.

Mechelle: “Do you see this girl in there? Why isn’t she getting a warning for all of this pushing and pulling in the clinch!”

Sylvie: “It’s a championship fight. The ref wants to let the fighters decide it. A champion shouldn’t complain about it, should she?”

Mechelle falls silent.

Sylvie: “Look, she’s got a better gameplan than last time, that’s pretty clear. But our gameplan still works – remember what turned the first fight around, it was that big uppercut. Her chin is not strong. It just takes one. Find it. Remember the jab we worked on in preparation? I want to see more of it. Be patient. Remember, she’s the challenger, she has to beat you decisively.”

Mechelle: “Yes, coach.”

Previous post

Rematch ready

Next post

Shifting Tide

Emma McGale

Emma McGale is an original character created by Alex. Living in Toronto, she is the Canadian Featherweight champion.
Emma McGale
basic HTML to style comments

<em>Italics</em>

<strong>Bold</strong>

<blockquote>Quote</blockquote>

7 comments

  1. Now this is a fascinating start to the fight. Similar to the Cowboys vs 49ers game I saw yesterday, Sandra is providing herself to be an effective example of how coaching can make the difference between a lead or trailing behind. If she did not insist on Emma to become more confident, who knows what could have happened. Instead of being at risk for another knockout, Emma found an edge and worked the body to take advantage of the champion. Of course, the champion will find a way to stop it in the upcoming rounds, but it is a nice improvement for Emma as I believe she now has the confidence needed to win this. Just keep up the points, a knockdown would be great for her chances with the judges if she can do it in the next few rounds.

    • It’s an even start to a back and forth round, but it does maybe hint at how the rest of the fight is going to go.

      Sandra gets a big moment early on in the career of her charge, and she’s knowledgable enough to go for the encouragement route. That’s a tough thing to do when you don’t have a relationship with the person you are coaching, but Sandra finds the right button to press.

      Mechelle is at the point in the fight where she needs to make her own adjustment. As a challenger, that is more or less what you want to do. Take them out of their gameplan and make her worry.

      (God, that 49ers/Cowboys game was nuts, wasn’t it)

  2. What a way to start the fight off, and it looks like I was right in my head that Emma probably was a bit nervous.
    Its not easy facing an opponent again who knocked you out in your last fight.

    Im already starting to like Sandra as Emma and Viranis new coach, she says it how it is in there and she understands how Emma feels about this. She’s good at getting Emma motivated. Now I’m looking forward to seeing her coach V.

    Second round Emma fights back being more aggressive but Mechelle doesn’t make it easy and I feel she won this round as well. It’s the third round where Emma definitely made her mark.

    I’m really enjoying seeing Emma fighting up close and being aggressive, don’t know why but that’s pretty sexy lol ❤️
    Mechelle is taken aback, she’s not facing the same Emma like she was before.

    Good third round for the peach, let’s hope she can keep that momentum up for the rest of the fight.

    Fave pics are that hook to the body at the end of round 3 and when Emma pushes Mechelle up against the ropes with her arm. ❤️

    • It’s a contested fight right off the start. Emma was a bit tentative at the start, but Sandra gives her a metaphorical kick in the butt to get her going. She saw what was happening and quickly made an adjustment.

      Second round was very close, maybe just edged by Mechelle. Third round Emma hits her stride, and if you like Emma being aggressive and up close and personal, then I have good news for you :D. We might be seeing more of that, unless Mechelle has a way of stopping it.

      • Oh I’m looking forward to more! Definitely hope that momentum keeps going! Though I feel it might get stopped a few times

  3. As expected, the Disney-like Winter Wonderland name leads to the kind of violence that they would never want to put in their content.

    It’s a conundrum for Emma in that first round. Gotta respect the opponent who knocked you out in the past because if you don’t, you face the same predicament. However, being too cautious gives Mechelle the freedom to do as she pleases. In boxing, those are punches landing on you and points scored in favour of the champion.

    Sandra’s approach shows in the corner. She takes no BS and tells her fighter what she needs to see. Don’t be afraid, relax and go for it.

    That makes the second round more competitive. So, a work in progress.

    The third round marks the return of the True Emma™. Physical work is what she does best and with those shoulders, I believe she can bully anyone whose weight is in a reasonable range. It takes away the jab and sets up the short punches she throws well.

    A warning by the ref for that forearm in the throat could be seen as a negative, but it’s rather a positive as long as she doesn’t drop a point. Because it states “you’re not safe in the ring with me.”

    It works well enough when Emma crams her right hand in Mechelle’s midsection.

    The coaching battle may be important here as two tacticians are providing advice in the corners.

    • Disney might put on a show with women as lovely as Mechelle and Emma, but they sure as heck wouldn’t show them in a boxing ring – they’d leave that for Netflix 😀

      This is the first time we see Sandra in action and she gives Emma a talking to. She doesn’t sugarcoat things for Emma, she gives her a message – you are better than this, be better.

      The third round is where Emma hit her stride. She uses her strength to her advantage and becomes a bit of a bully in the ring. It really does get under Mechelle’s skin and more importantly it allows Emma to get her fists into Mechelle’s midsection. That seems to be a place where Emma can have success and Sandra encourages Emma to keep it up.

      The coaching battle could be quite important here – this does seem like a match that could be determined by a fine margin.

Comments are now closed.

Support us