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Friday, October 11, 2013

1912-10-11 Packey McFarland W-TKO7 Tommy Kilbane [Auditorium rink, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada]

1912-10-12 Manitoba Free Press (Winnipeg, MB, Canada) (page 25)
Packey Outclasses Cleveland Lad in Every Round--Referee Stops Bout in Seventh.
At the end of seven rounds of boxing that served only to give Winnipeg fight fans an idea of the cleverness of Packey McFarland, Referee Bun Foley stopped the scheduled ten-round bout between the Chicago scrapper and Tommy Kilbane, of Cleveland, and awarded the decision to McFarland, at the Auditorium rink last night. Kilbane was plucky and willing, but was so clearly outclassed that there was never even an element of fight interest. McFarland seemed to be looking for a knockout toward the end of the seventh and punished the Cleveland lad so severely that it would not have taken much of a real punch to make him take the count.

Only a fair-sized crowd saw the bout, and it demonstrated that the peddling of even the best boxers in the world to Winnipeg fans is a thankless business. McFarland is without doubt the best man of his weight in the business, but Winnipeg enthusiasts failed to show the interest that usually attaches to the appearance of a champion.


Kilbane looked small and weak compared with the brawny Chicago boy, and although he boxed cleverly and took all that was coming, he was completely smothered every time he tried to open up. Packey landed at will, and when he got tired landing light punches and gentle swings, he turned Kilbane around and cuffed him about the ears with an ease that showed there was no comparison between the two. Occasionally Packey opened out with a heavy rip to the body or a straight left that nearly always found its mark, but he did not follow up with any effort at a knockout until the seventh, when he apparently objected to the criticisms of the crowd at the slowness of the affair. When he began to put some steam into his punches Kilbane weakened rapidly and Referee Foley was undoubtedly well justified in stopping it.


The whole interest in the bout centred in the appearance of McFarland, his first in Canada. He looked big and heavy and must have weighed well over 140, but he appeared hard and rugged and although never extended, showed fast as a cat when he took the notion. He is a methodical boxer, beautifully clean and effective in every move he makes and in this respect is to be compared only with Abe Attell among the scrappers who have visited Winnipeg in recent years. Every move the Chicago boy makes is for a purpose and there is not a waste motion. For this reason he does not look as fast as Freddie Welsh, but when necessary he showed speed, both with feet and hands, that showed that he is as fast as the best of them. He had no difficulty in stopping most of Kilbane's leads and swings with his arms and gloves and there was therefore little chance to see just what his defensive work is. He hits with lightning speed with either hand, and from any position, and against a heavier opponent would undoubtedly have given Winnipeg fans something to talk about, as he was apparently willing to work if there was any work to do.


The preliminaries were fairly interesting. Young Abe Attell and Jack Allen, two youngsters, mixed things for 4 rounds without either doing much damage. Young Wolgast and Young Mack put the crowd in good humor. Mack, who was much bigger and heavier than his opponent, opened like a cyclone, but once Wolgast got his bearings he made the big fellow slow up and in the last four rounds had much the best of the bout. Fargo Kid and Johnny Logan two likely looking boys, hammered away at each other for 6 rounds with both doing about an equal amount of damage.

1912-10-12 The Winnipeg Tribune (Winnipeg, MB, Canada) (page 6)
Crowd Goads Packey McFarland Into Trying for a Knockout and With Tommy Kilbane Hanging Limply on Ropes Third Man in Ring Terminates Contest
Boxers are human beings after all--human beings whose emotions are but playthings in the hands of the hempen arena guild. It is said with a certain degree of truth that men of the gloves see only their opponent, not a sea of eager faces fringing the ringside, and that the roars and shouts of the crowd are but a meaningless rumble. Perhaps. Some boxers may fulfill an engagement and see only the men in front of them, and occasionally the referee, and hear nothing, but this does not apply to Packey McFarland.

Packey has ears of wondrous sharpness, and the sounds outside the gladiatorial square reach him with crystal clearness. Packey last night seemed willing enough to make his bout with Tommy Kilbane at the Auditorium rink last, but the crowd willed otherwise. Spectators gave evidence early in the fray that they wanted a slugging match, not an exhibition of boxing.

Forgetting the masterly display of glove work, spectators clamored for the sterner side of the game--the knockout. They were not content to see the cleverest of all present day boxers exhibit his art.


They wanted a knockout. And they almost goaded McFarland into satiating their venomous desire. Not that they entertained a spirit of animosity toward Tommy Kilbane. The game little Cleveland boy was the friend of all, yet they were disdainful toward McFarland--and voiced the feeling that they wouldn't be satisfied unless Packey scored a knockout. Human nature is peculiar--an enigma that cannot be solved.

McFarland outboxed Kilbane in every round. It was obvious to all after the first three minutes of milling that Kilbane was in a different class to McFarland. Packey knew this, too, and while he meted out considerable punishment about the face and body his purpose evidently was not to win too quickly.

But the crowd was not content. About the fifth round spectators commenced shouting at McFarland. They didn't go to see a burlesque, they said. And all the time McFarland was controlling that little something which in some fighters is called the brutal instinct.


McFarland heard the comment of the crowd as well as the men in the press box. And he was incited into an onslaught on Kilbane in the seventh round, which would have probably never materialized had not the crowd shouted for slugging. Packey then threw all restraint aside and instead of continuing in the role of the boxer who had pity on an opponent immeasurably beneath his own standard he tore into Kilbane. To please the crowd McFarland beat Kilbane about the ring. He ripped in rights and lefts so fast that it was difficult to keep count of them and when the bell rang Kilbane was resting limply on the ropes.

Kilbane would have come up all right in the eighth round. He appears to have that gameness which is above anything associated with repugnance in a boxer. It wasn't necessary for Kilbane to take more grueling, however, for with the sound of the bell Referee Bun Foley stepped between the men and waved them to their corners. Seeing that Kilbane was so palpably outclassed, Referee Foley, with the same judicious judgment that has characterized him in the past, stopped the bout. It will probably be recorded as a knockout for McFarland, for such is the ritual of the game.


McFarland must be seen to be appreciated. It is common for the scholar after graduating from the highest seats of learning to be called a master. That's McFarland. He cannot be taught anything in boxing, so that it would only be a waste of time to try and explain why he excels all other glove men in skill. Some may think Freddie Welsh is faster, but their only reason for that would hinge around a difference in style of footwork. Welsh dances in, out and around an opponent. Packey is more firmly set in deportment, but his hands and feet move with lightning like rapidity. Not as showily as Welsh, perhaps, but the different style gives Packey more driving power. The fact that he can hit so hard and still retain a marvelous defence is the real secret why Packey McFarland is peerless in the 135-pound class of boxers.


"I know I'm in for a lickin', but I'll get a big slice of money out of it."

That's what Ad Wolgast is reported to have said after signing articles with McFarland a few weeks ago. This admission coming from Wolgast helps smooth out the wrinkles for Kilbane. He need not feel ashamed of his efforts when the lightweight champion of the world made the candid statement that he would be beaten in a ten round go with Packey.

McFarland pressed Kilbane nearly every second. Tommy was crowded to the ropes and he couldn't escape from the rights and lefts that McFarland showered. Packey had a habit of forcing Tommy into the corners and there was no escape for the Clevelander. Three times Kilbane tried to scurry away from McFarland and each time his knees touched the canvas. Tommy was nervous, though game as a pebble. It was nervousness and the knowledge that he was inferior which made Kilbane slip to the floor.


Seldom did Kilbane lay his gloves on Packey. It was all McFarland from the first to the last gong which closed the dramatic incidents of the seventh round. Many wondered how it was that Tommy made such a good showing against Packey in their previous encounter. That can only be regarded as one of the inexplicable mysteries of the ring.

A big crowd was present and spectators saw some lively milling in the prelims. In the first four round affair Young Abe Attell and Jack Allen gave a good account of themselves. Honors were about even, Attell having a shade. In the second go Young Mace started to rush Young Wolgast and slam him about the ring. This he succeeded in doing in the first round, but in the second Wolgast met all rushes with punches on the face and before the bell he had Mace slowed up. The last two rounds were also Wolgast, so that he finished with a good margin.


In the six round semi-windup the Fargo Kid and Johnny Logan exhibited fast work and plenty of slugging. It was about a stand off, although a knockdown to the credit of Logan gave him just a trifle the better of the argument. Logan hurt his wrist in the fifth in delivering a wicked smash, and was handicapped a little in the closing round. But Foley refereed all bouts in his own efficient manner.

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