Stunned in the first round and struggling with the aggresion of Constantin Popovicu, nobody at the National Stadium would have predicted what Thomas Carty did in the final round of his super heavyweight semi-final.
With defeat on the cards, the Glasnevin youngster landed a right hook that floored the blocky Johnstown boxer, sending shockwaves around the famous venue and sending his loud fanbase into pandemonium.
Despite a delayed count, Popovicu’s legs were like spaghetti afterwards and he was thankful there was little time left in the round, surviving to the final bell.
The knockdown seemingly proved crucial, and Carty was announced a split-decision winner, and afterwards spoke to irish-boxing.com.
The animated Dubliner described the knockdown with joy, recalling that “I remember throwing a left hand and just following it with a right hook – I didn’t even put much into the right hook it just landed sweet and he crumbled.”
Indeed such was the manner of Popovicu’s trip to the canvas, Carty immediately ran to turnbuckle to celebrate with his fans, and had to be almost dragged to the neutral corner by the referee. Afterwards he laughed, explaining that “I turned around and jumped cos I thought he was gone but when I turned back around he was after standing back up, I couldn’t believe it.”
Despite the long count, the Meath-based Romanian was ready to go, however a drained Carty couldn’t finish the job, and the youngster joked that “I hadn’t the energy to go for him so I thought ‘if I win it, I win it!’”
On a more serious note, Carty knows the importance that just one punch can have on a fight, a championships, and even on a career.
The super-heavyweight starlet agrees “big time” that the knockdown clinched the bout for him, reasoning that “if I hadn’t of got that big shot at the end it wouldn’t have came my way I don’t think.”
Carty’s reward is a final clash with reigning champ Dean Gardiner next week, and the infectious Dub certainly won’t be short on confidence.