Top Leeds featherweight prospect, Zahid ‘The Magic Man’ Hussain, came close to the brink of defeat as he suffered the first knock down of his unbeaten eight-fight career from tough Polish veteran fighter Ignac Kassai.
Hussain was in total control of the opening round as he majestically out boxed the southpaw brawler. However a lapse of focus from The Magic Man in the dying seconds of that first round was all that Kassai needed to unleash a heavy KO blow.
This caught The Magic Man Zahid flush, sending him to the canvas heavily. Zahid got up way too quickly in my opinion to take the referee’s mandatory count. Sensing that he was on the verge of a major upset Kassai pounced on Zahid like a hungry tiger, but alas it was too late as the bell sounded for the end of the round.
From my vantage point, had there been another 20 seconds remaining the Pole would have cleaned Hussain’s clock and would have surely got the victory. Clearly shaken and with a touch of embarrassment he returned sheepishly to his corner to be given the riot act by his corner-man and brother Wahid Hussain. I could not hear what was said in the corner but it definitely did the trick.
The Magic Man came out and produced a boxing comeback of epic proportion. Slick footwork, razor sharp jabs which pounded into the face of Kassai. Slowly but surely he took Kassai out into open deep water slowly drowning him and getting back to the script.
The referee intervened mid way in the third round as a little cut had appeared on the face of Kassai. The fight was allowed to continue. Winning rounds two and three comfortably, still with the affects of embarrassment from the first round, Hussain came out with a vengeance to put things right, and wow did he do that.
With his machine gun jabs and a booming right hand he dissected Kassai’s face. Each super jab ripping into the cut eye and the open flesh. Kassai’s face was a mess. The Magic Man was like a wild hyena who sensed that meal time was coming.
Throwing a multiple seven punch combination he ripped open the cut forcing the referee to call the doctor once again. This time the doctor had no choice but to hold the contest, he did not want to send the valiant Pole back home minus an eye. So the referee waved the contest over. Zahid was ecstatic, he ran to the corner ropes to salute his adoring fans who were all on their feet after this rollercoaster ride.
Although having flair and style The Magic Man showed and answered the question that many fighters are asked in time of a crisis fight, that like a warrior in near defeat he got off the canvas dusted himself down, wiped his mouth and heroically clawed back to victory in emphatic style.
I believe he will learn a lot from this experience that this game is as dangerous as it comes and excuse the pun but ‘every fighter has a puncher’s chance’.