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Coach Ginley reflects on “devastating” Anto Cacace title loss

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Ray Ginley admits he was both shocked and devastated when ring announcer Phil Seymour called out ‘and still’ in London on Saturday night.

The young coach was readying himself to celebrate an Anthony Cacace British and Commonwealth super featherweight title win after watching his charge go 12 rounds with Martin J Ward, only for the Matchroom boxer to be given the nod on a close unanimous decision.

Unlike a whole host of Irish fight fans and the Twitter army though, Ginley isn’t screaming robbery.

Neither did the Immanuel BA coach have Cacace [15(7)-1(0)] winning by 10 rounds, unlike Argentinian television, but he was confident the challenger had done enough to win. So, when the result went the way of Ward, he was both shocked and hurt for a his fighter.

“I thought Anto won by two or three rounds. I knew some rounds were close but I thought Anto was landing the of meaningful punches and wasn’t taking much either,” Ginley told Irish-Boxing.com.

“We really were waiting for “and the new” and when they said “and still” it was devastating. I know how hard Anto worked and how much he wanted those belts and what it meant to him. It was awful, especially when I really thought he won the fight.”

The clash wasn’t an all action affair, but Cacace picked his shots the better and seemed to be doing the cleaner work.

There were some arguing you need to dominate rounds and win them clearly to dethrone a champion away from home, while others suggesting Cacace was the more accurate and evasive in the vast majority of rounds.

Ginley believes his fighter was at least four rounds up going into the second half of the fight, pointing out the game plan worked perfectly.

The Belfast coach suggests Ward adapted in the second half of a tense battle between two talented punchers, but is adamant the away fighter still done enough to win the fight and the two titles on offer.

“We had a game plan going in and I thought Anto stuck to it well. We had watched Ward and seen that he struggles a bit with southpaws. He tends to fall in a lot with his back hand. Our plan was to have him fall in and then counter him with the back hand.”

“It worked for the first six rounds. I thought Anto was up by four or five rounds going into the seventh because he wasn’t really getting hit and was landing the meatier shots,” Ginley explained before continuing to give good insight.

“I think Ward adapted in the second half of the fight and was finding his range a bit better and was able to get his back hand into play. I felt he was still missing with the majority if his punches and that is the period when Anto started to switch hit and was then having more success orthodox.”

The fight was billed as ‘do or die’ for Cacace considering he had waited so long for his shot, but such was his performance that defeat shouldn’t prove too harmful career wise.

There are certainly positives to take for the fighter, who also felt he won, and Ginley also seems to have taken from the experience.

“I learned so much over the weekend and the camp. Getting sparring in, creating a game plan, big pressers and weigh-ins etc, it was a great experience for me and I’ll definitely be a better coach from it.”

frayne carpentry


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years