Sports

Australian champion Justis Huni defeats Paul Gallen via tenth round stoppage

By Sacha Mirzabegian12:32

Justis Huni surprised many with his power by dominating Paul Gallen with a tenth round TKO in Sydney tonight but the former NRL star won plenty of fans.

Huni landed several heavy body shots early and pressured from the inside and outside hurting Gallen at will. The former NRL star was in trouble throughout the fight, getting rocked in the first round and in the latter part of the bout but he just kept coming.

Such was the ferocity of Huni’s strikes to the body he broke the former Sharks skipper’s ribs in the second round.

In the final three minutes Gallen did everything he could to hang on and grabbed at Huni’s legs in a tackle that would have been right at home on the footy field. But when both fighters returned to their feet Huni went to town and dropped the 39-year-old.

Gallen got up from the canvas and wanted to continue, but referee John Cauchi waved the fight off.

“A big shout out to Gal,” Huni said post-fight. “He’s an awesome competitor very tough very strong.

“Thank you to him for putting up an awesome challenge. He’s definitely built different. You’re a legend mate. He made it tricky for me in the build up with his words but we don’t let that get to us. We come here and we do what we need to do.”

While he was dominated from beginning to end – Gallen said he just wanted to get through the fight but it wasn’t to be.

“I want to win. I’m as competitive person there is. By the sixth or seventh round I knew I wasn’t going to win it I just wanted to finish it.

“While he knocked me down fair and square I thought the referee stopped it early but I was never going to win the fight. I think he broke me rib in about the second round. I just couldn’t get off every time I moved it kept clicking.

“He was too fast and probably punched a little bit harder than I thought he was going to punch as well. I just wanted to get through the fight but he was too good tonight. I wish him the best.”

When asked if he would take up a rematch with Huni after the Olympics, Gallen said:

“I’m not against it. I think I had a really good preparation. It was a short one but I got fit the fittest I’ve ever been going into this fight.”

Gallen also had one final piece of advice for the Aussie champ.

“Justis you’re a terrific fighter but you’ve got to start selling fights brother if you want to make some cash and make a living out of this you’ve got to sell fights.

“I’m happy to teach you but maybe after the next fight though.”