Countering the Jab
Ezzard Charles was one of the greatest we have ever seen step foot in the ring, earlier in the week on the 7th July it was the birth anniversary of Charles and he is someone I have written about previously in numerous other articles. In this article I will have a look at a subtle little skill Charles would use when countering the jab.
The catch and shoot is a very common way to counter the jab, with the catch and shoot you catch the opponents jab with your back hand and then you immediately shoot back with your jab. It is a very effective counter to the jab and probably the most common counter to the jab as well.
Charles used an old school trick which was a very subtle twist on the catch and shoot. With this counter the core is the same, you are still catching and shooting the jab but here you are now stepping in as you catch the jab and simultaneously throw the jab as well. With the catch and shoot you do not step as you catch, you catch and then you may step in with the counter jab, by instead stepping in when catching the jab you are in effect smothering the opponents jab. So not only are you adding power to your counter jab by stepping in but you are also smothering the opponents jab with the step and you have also closed the gap between you and your opponent.
What’s more, when you see how Charles was doing this in the video below you will notice he also threw the jab with an upward trajectory. By jabbing ‘up’ he was also using his jabbing arm as a shield to block against any potential counter from the right cross and we see in the video that this upward trajectory of the jab does indeed block the counter right.