Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 29th 2016 Contents As Nick Blackwell lies in an induced
coma in a London hospital following a
brutal middleweight title fight, a heavy
sense of deja vu is hanging over British
In 1991, Michael Watson suffered a near-
fatal brain injury in an all-British world title
fight against Chris Eubank. Watson needed
six operations to remove the blood clot that
had formed on his brain, leaving him partially
Twenty-five years later, the long-retired
Eubank was a central figure in another dark
night for the sport in Britain. And it might
be that his memories of that fight against
Watson prevented the worst of scenarios in
Eubank was in the corner of his son, Chris
Eubank Jnr., who was handing Blackwell a
beating in their fight for the British title at
Wembley Arena. By the end of the eighth
round, Blackwell was in a bad state with
his left eye closed and swollen.
Eubank Snr. saw the gravity of the sit-
uation and entered the ring to speak to his
son before the ninth round began, telling
him to stop taking head shots to Blackwell.
"If the referee doesn t stop it, then I don t
know what to tell you," Eubank told his son.
"But I will tell you this: If he doesn t stop
it and you keep on beating him like this,
one, he is getting hurt, two, if it goes to a
decision, why hasn t the referee stopped
the fight? I don t get why.
"So maybe you shouldn t leave it to the
referee. But you are not going to take him
out to the face. You are going to take him
out to the body. OK?"
The fight continued to the 10th round,
when it was stopped after the ringside doctor
advised the referee that Blackwell was unable
to see through his left eye. Minutes later,
Blackwell fell to the floor in the ring and
was taken to hospital.
He suffered bleeding of the brain and is
in intensive care, sparking an outpouring
of heartfelt messages from the boxing fra-
"Will u all pray for Nick Blackwell please
ASAP," world heavyweight champion Tyson
Fury said on Twitter.
The BBC reported late Sunday that sur-
geons are not planning to operate on Black-
Watson said he "went down memory lane
in many senses" as the Blackwell-Eubank
Jnr. fight unfolded. Unlike during Watson s
darkest moment 25 years ago, there were
medical professionals on hand for prompt
treatment for Blackwell.
Tuesday, March 29,2016 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
GENT---The death of a local rider as a result of
an accident during the Gent-Wevelgem classic over-
shadowed the victory by world champion Peter
The Wanty-Gobert team confirmed the death of
Belgian rider Antoine Demoitie after a fall during
the race. Local media reported he was hit by a motor-
bike after coming down.
He was taken to the intensive care unit of a hospital
in the northern French city of Lille. Yesterday morning,
the team posted a photograph of him on its official
Twitter and Facebook pages, accompanied by the
text "Antoine Demoitie 1990-2016". It said it would
issue a statement later.
Sagan, who claimed the world title last September
in Richmond, Virginia, posted his first victory in the
Viacheslav Kuznetsov made the first move, about
200 metres from the finish line, but Sagan then
easily outsprinted his rivals.
Sagan, who finished runner-up at the E3 Harelbeke
race earlier this week, won ahead of Sep Vanmarcke
and Kuznetsov, with one-day classic specialist Fabian
Cancellara in fourth place.
It was the Slovak s second victory in Gent-Wevel-
gem, following his maiden success in the 234-kilo-
metre cobblestone classic back in 2013.
Sagan and Vanmarcke jumped away from the main
pack with 34 kilometers left to follow Cancellara
when the Swiss rider accelerated in the final climb
of the day up the cobbled Kemmelberg.
After catching Kuznetsov, the four breakaway riders
collaborated well and resisted the peloton s chase.
"(It) was very hard because we were in a breakaway,"
Sagan said. "Today I felt very, very good and the
victory is here."
Cancellara said he was hampered by cramps in
the final five kilometers and was unable to fight for
"In the end, I did not have the legs, or power, that
I am used to," Cancellara said.
Sagan will be among the favourites at the upcoming
Tour of Flanders before competing in Paris-Roubaix.
Death of rider
"I went through a lot when it happened to me,
and it makes me feel happy that what I went through
led to a change in the medical provision laid out for
boxers," Watson told yesterday s edition of British
newspaper The Daily Telegraph.
"Young Chris need not blame himself for what
has happened. It was not his intention to bring harm
to his opponent, as strange as that sounds. It was
Robert Smith, general secretary of the British Board
of Boxing Control, defended the decision of the ref-
eree, Victor Loughlin, to let the fight continue despite
Blackwell s condition.
"Every boxer who gets into a ring knows the risks,"
Smith said. "We have everything in place as best we
can. But we re never going to make it 100 percent
safe . We do everything we possibly can, we are very
strict in this country.
"But it s the nature of the sport."
Nick Blackwell....in a coma in a London hospital.
With Blackwell in coma, British
boxing experiences deja vu
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