By Sports Reporter Doha
Sheikh Fahad bin Khalid al-Thani presented himself a memorable birthday gift when Qatar’s first professional boxer extended his unblemished streak to 12 victories in Madrid on Saturday.
The Spanish capital saw the super welterweight boxer beat Romania’s Ionut Bogheanu, after the latter was pulled out of the bout by his team in the third round after having sustained what looked like a shoulder injury.
The Qatari boxer, who celebrated his 32nd birthday on Friday, had earlier met Bogheanu in December 2016, with Sheikh Fahad picking up a knockout victory in the Spanish capital then.
This time, however, the Romanian came prepared.
“He was stronger than before and had done his homework,” Sheikh Fahad told Gulf Times yesterday. “He’s taller with a longer reach, and a fast and sharp jab.
“In the first round, he surprised me by landing an uppercut before I hit his body with a combination.”
In the second round, a resilient Sheikh Fahad stayed his course even as Bogheanu tried getting back into the bout.
“In the second round I managed to find my timing after consistently trying to hit his body. It led me to being knocked down in the second by a straight cross. However, I regained the control shortly after and kept throwing combinations.”
The combinations took their toll on Bogheanu and he sustained an injury, causing his corner to pull him out at the beginning of the third round.
This was Sheikh Fahad’s third victory this year, having beaten southpaw, Marius Racaru, in March in Valladolid, Spain. He followed that up with a victory over Marius Petre Sorin in July.
It was also his second victory with Franck Bohec as his head coach. Bohec, who has been Sheikh Fahad’s longtime trainer, took over from Cuban coach Ismael Salas.
Sheikh Fahad made a winning debut against Hungary’s Bela Sandor in May 2016. He has since beaten a string of Romanians — Adrian Parlogea (thrice), Gheorghe Ghiompirica (twice), Racaru (twice), Bogheanu (twice), Dumitru Nicu Manea and Sorin.
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