Drew Etherington's first fight in almost a year was close, but the Shepparton fighter lost on a split decision after a slow start to the bout proved costly.By Matthew Galea
It was a tough reintroduction to the ring for Shepparton’s Drew Etherington on Saturday.
The 16-year-old Muay Thai fighter lost his first fight in almost a year on a split decision at Saturday’s Mayhem on the Murray event at Corowa against 28-year old Steve Papasedero.
‘‘It was a really close fight,’’ Etherington’s trainer Mat Reid said.
‘‘The other guy edged it by one point, but if it went for another couple of rounds I think Drew would have won.’’
The fight was contested over three 90-second rounds, but Reid said Etherington was too slow out of the blocks.
‘‘The slow start made it that little bit harder for him to get a clear win,’’ Reid said.
‘‘He was good in round two and round three, but that slow start cost him.’’
Reid said aggression was particularly important because of the inexperience of the judges.
‘‘The judging was average all day, there were a lot of split-point decisions which suggested that the judges weren’t very experienced.
‘‘Drew had to take that into consideration and be more aggressive because that sort of aggression will impress these less experienced judges.’’
Reid said the decision should have been a clear win for Papasadero, but the poor judging was a shame for the event as a whole.
‘‘A lot of these guys are amateurs and beginners and that sort of judging can put a sour note at the start of their careers,’’ Reid said.
‘‘The other guy did enough to win, but in saying that Drew did a good job. He had not fought for a while, but he’s training all the time, so I don’t think that was a problem.’’
Etherington will wait for his next fight at Reid’s Muay Thai and MMA Mayhem event that is scheduled for next month.
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