Tonight was meant to be the rebirth of ‘The David Beckham of boxing in France’ otherwise known as Tony Yoka, Olympic Gold medalist. Sadly it turned into Yoka falling further down the pecking order.
Carlos Takam took the split decision win in Paris in what should have been a lopsided unanimous decision for Takam. Yoka started reasonably confident in the opening rounds, the jab and movement which served him so well in the amateurs was plain to see. However, as the fight grew into rounds three and four Carlos Takam’s jab was more effective than Yoka, he was more aggressive and took the fight to the Parisian.
I struggled to give Yoka a round after the first two. A nice jab would be followed by slick bit of movement away from Takam to the ‘Ahhhhhh’s’ of the French crowd. But that is all it ever was throughout the fight, not enough action from Yoka, he just was not active enough and never let his hand go. The rights hands thrown could be counted on the fingers of one hand during the entire ten rounds. Virgil Hunter demanded from Yoka ‘To show him something’ at the end of the ninth, but it was too little too late. Yoka’s expression upon losing the fight, was lifeless with no emotion as boos came from his fans at the end of his disappointing performance.
Carlos Takam on the other hand rolled back the years, bullying Yoka for the majority of the contest, looking well below his early forties. Virgil Hunter said at the end of the forth round to Yoka ‘Don’t let this guy Martin Bakole you!’ It’s almost what happened, the performance was poor for a wannabe world champion but not as bad as his performance against Bakole - just!
It felt like the end for Yoka ringside in Paris. Talking to the local boxing fans, it appears they already had doubts after the defeat to Bakole, now it seems to be the final nail in the coffin of Tony Yoka’s boxing career.