1935-10-04 Tony Canzoneri w pts 15 Al Roth, Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD

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1935-10-04 Tony Canzoneri w pts 15 Al Roth, Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD. Referee: Arthur Donovan. In a bruising battle that saw neither man coming out of it unscathed, Roth (133½) fought on pluckily after being dropped in the third round and outclassed through to the tenth. Bravely, Roth staged a furious rally during the 12th, 13th and 14th sessions before Canzoneri (133½) took control again to land the unanimous decision. The verdict was never in doubt, the champion having too much of everything for the game Roth, who walked away without damaging his career.

With Canzoneri taking time out before coming back towards the end of January 1936, and the NYSAC looking to find his next title challenger, they set up two semi-final eliminators between Leonard Del Genio versus Wesley Ramey and Lou Ambers versus Pedro Montanez. Del Genio beat Ramey (w pts 10 at St Nicholas Arena, Manhattan, NYC on 30 March 1936), but as a stablemate of Canzoneri’s he decided not to push on, while Montanez pulled out. Before the elimination series took place Ramey was a big favourite to beat Del Genio, who had been the number-two contender, and it was expected to be either him or Montanez who would be in the opposite corner to the champion. Ambers, having already been beaten by Canzoneri and Montanez was not a great draw, but the NYSAC and the champion had to stand on the result.

On 1 April 1936, Ambers posted $1,500 to bind a match with Canzoneri that was to be held within 60 days of the champion’s non-title fight against Jimmy McLarnin (at Madison Square Garden) on 8 May. After outpointing McLarnin in what was a great ten-round contest, Canzoneri began to prepare for Ambers, with the bout being set for 30 July. However, things did not go to plan, and with ticket sales slow and a general lack of interest in the fight it came as no surprise to those in the know when Canzoneri requested more time to prepare for Ambers in early July. Continuing to request a postponement, Canzoneri was told by the NYSAC that unless he met Ambers by 8 August he would be stripped. Thus, it came as a bit of a surprise after Canzoneri had been visited by the doctors on 4 August when the press reported that although they could find nothing really wrong with him the fight was being postponed until 3 September in agreement with the NYSAC, the promoter and both fighters.

Earlier, on 26 April 1936, Frankie Klick outpointed Rafael Hurtado over ten rounds at the St Nicholas Arena, a result that also saw the latter lose his third-place ranking. Since arriving in America in August 1935 the Panamanian had recorded wins over Lew Feldman, Leo Rodak, Roth, Del Genio and Eddie Brink, and was well on his way to a title shot before meeting up with Klick. Although doing reasonably well he never again reached such a high standing.