By Elliot Foster (@FreelanceFoz)
Miguel Cotto retained his world title after scoring a stoppage.
The 34-year-old ended the challenge of Daniel Geale inside four rounds in the first defence of the WBC middleweight title.
Cotto, who advanced to 40-4 (33) with the win, knocked down the Australian twice at the Barclays Center in New York before referee Harvey Dock stopped the bout.
Geale, a former world champion who dropped to 31-4 (16) in defeat, has lost three of his last five and was on the wrong end of a beating from Cotto, one which came a day prior to the one-year anniversary of the Puerto Rican winning the title.
He was drained as a result of having to make the catchweight limit of 157lbs, while Cotto –– who many believe is a natural welterweight –– was hunky dory on the scales at Friday’s weigh-in, coming in under the light middleweight limit at 153.6lbs.
Geale was on the canvas early in the fourth from a vicious left hook and, sensing a finish, Cotto piled on the pressure, hitting his opponent with a plethora of accurate body shots before a right to the head floored the Aussie for a second time.
The Aussie arose but was saved from any further punishment after 88 seconds of the round.
“Let’s do it,” Cotto said, post-fight, regarding a potential big-money match-up against Mexico’s Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvárez, which could be confirmed for later in the year.
“Before that, I want to spend some time with my family and enjoy them again, but then it is back to LA and training for Canelo.”by