1937-09-23 Barney Ross w pts 15 Ceferino Garcia, Polo Grounds, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD

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1937-09-23 Barney Ross w pts 15 Ceferino Garcia, Polo Grounds, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD. Referee: Bill Cavanagh. Scorecards: 7-5, 9-4, 9-4. Defending his title in ‘The Carnival of Champions’ show, Ross (143) put on an excellent display to thwart the ambitious Garcia (145¾), who proved to be a tough opponent. Always looking to get away his famous ‘bolo’ punch, a devastating sweeping overarm right, Garcia hurt Ross on several occasions. However, the latter showed up well, keeping the challenger off balance with the left jab, and when in trouble his defensive ability enabled him to get out of tight spots more often than not. In the fourth Garcia was cut around the right eye, and a round or so later under the left as Ross worked away, but he was always dangerous. Several times during the contest it looked as though Ross would be dropped, but somehow he found a way out. With the 13th and 14th sessions being especially bad for him he was strictly on the defensive throughout, fighting open mouthed, and it was almost the same in the 15th until he found another gear to rip in lefts and rights prior to the final bell. The unanimous decision in his favour was testament to all of the good work he put in earlier, but Ross, who ended with a badly swollen face and a damaged left hand, knew he had been in a war.

Ross, who was currently inactive, forfeited IBU recognition in January 1938 when that authority decided to recognise the winner of the Felix Wouters v Gustav Eder European title bout as world champion.

Coming back in April 1938 for two warm-up fights, Ross had earlier signed to make a defence against Henry Armstrong, the current featherweight champion, on 31 May 1938, with the winner to meet Lou Ambers inside 60 days.

Earlier, on 15 November 1937, the Cocoa Kid (143½) successfully defended his ‘black’ title claim when knocking out Sonny Jones (142½) in the sixth of a 15 rounder at the Valley Arena, Holyoke, Massachusetts.