A second-round technical knockout delivered by Mexico’s Jose Uzcategui came as a shock to V.I. residents that gathered around their televisions Tuesday night to cheer on 340 Boxing’s Julius “The Chef” Jackson.
Tuesday’s bout between Jackson (19-1) and Uzcategui (24-1) headlined a Premier Boxing Champions Toe-to-Toe Tuesday’s fight card that was televised live on Fox Sports 1 from San Antonio, Texas.
Leading up to fight time, announcers described the matchup as one of Jackson’s toughest, which would have pushed him to No. 1 in the International Boxing Federation’s super middleweight rankings and triggered a mandatory fight against current champion James DeGale (21-1.)
From the get-go, Uzcategui was the aggressor in the fight, using a mix of combinations and speed that backed Jackson repeatedly into corners and against the ropes.
After a punch to the temple during the first round, Jackson said he didn’t fully recover, and Uzcategui went on for three more knockdowns before the fight was called 45-seconds into the second round.
“In life there are tests, and sometimes there are obstacles when you are on this journey,” said 340 Boxing managing partner Lesley Comissiong after the fight. “It makes you stronger and we will be back because nothing is going to stop us from reaching our goal.”
Jackson also remained positive afterward.
“I think he just got me and I never fully recovered,” Jackson said, adding that Uzcategui “finished well,” but “we’re not discouraged.”
“The plan now is to go home, relax for a minute, get back to work and see what’s next,” Jackson said.
On-island and ringside, Jackson was backed by a large contingent of V.I supporters, including San Antonio Spurs power forward Tim Duncan, who spoke to Jackson in the locker room before the fight.
“He wished Julius the best,” Comissiong said Tuesday. “He said that he was proud of him and that, even though he was nervous, he knew Julius could still take care of business,” Comissiong said.