In today’s article I am going to go over the feint and how it was used by Nicolino Locche to win the world light welterweight title back in 1968. The feint is used to open an opponent up by faking a punch to extract a reaction to help you read what your opponent is going to do and in this world title fight, Locche used the full repertoire of feints to confuse his opponent, it really was a masterful display of boxing iq.
Locche was one of the fighters I included in my book Forgotten Legends of the Ring.
Known for his defensive mastery and use of the shoulder roll, Locche could literally drop his hands to his side or even behind his back, stick his chin out and still avoid punches from his opponent, not for nothing did he earn the nickname ‘El Intocable’ meaning the untouchable.
Locche was an Argentinian boxer and had it not been for Carlos Monzon, the world middleweight champion who also hailed from Argentina, he would have been far more widely lauded. Locche was the opposite of the stereotypical boxer, short, balding, stout, a heavy smoker(he was known to even smoke in between rounds as his trainers crowded around him giving him a cigarette to puff on!) who didn’t like training and didn’t like dieting, he looked like he went to watch a fight to sit in the crowd but the boxer didn’t turn up and the referee asks someone in the crowd whether they want to step in and Locche raises his hand and in he comes. Yet there are some who believe he was the greatest ever defensive boxer, lacking knockout power he knocked out just 14 of his opponents but still he lost only 4 times in an amazing 136 fights.
When Locche travelled to Japan to face the champion Takeshi Fuji, it was actually the first time he had travelled out of South America, despite having over 100 fights – another reason why he wasn’t as well known as other champions of the time.
Locche starts off by feeling his opponent out with the jab and begins to employ the feint, faking his jab up high he does throw the jab behind it to the head, he then feints high and goes low to the body landing a successful left hook.
The next feint Locche uses is the foot feint. He uses this by feinting as if he is moving his foot in to close the gap and go for the punch, causing a reaction in his opponent, this allows him to gauge what his opponent was going to do had he stepped in. He can now plot his next plan of attack knowing how his opponent will react.
Locche will also use the head feint, the head feint Locche uses was to fake a power shot or sudden attack. He ends the feint by not throwing a combination but simply throwing the hook to the body knowing his opponent was on edge expecting a hard combo. The head feint can also be used to fake a punch to a particular side, if I lean over to the left, chances are I will be using my left hand for my next punch but you can feint it by using the opposing hand instead.
After this comes the shoulder feint, Locche flinches his shoulder as if he going to throw the right cross or the left hook, his opponent doesn’t know what to expect and instinctively covers up.
Nicolino Locche’s use of the feint was so exemplary and his shoulder roll was so good that Takeshi Fuji actually quit the fight and retired on his stool at the end of round 10, exhausted from continuously missing with his punches and not knowing what Locche was going to do.
For a full breakdown of the feint and its uses, you can read a previous article of mine HERE