Fury pivots and the heavyweight division changes direction too

Francesco Pianeta played his part, the 250-pound piñata for birthday boy Tyson Fury’s party. He took his cheque and plodded home safe and well as Fury confessed he hoped he would. Pianeta seemed happy enough. Undamaged, paid and with a tale or two to tell his grandkids. It says much of the heavyweight division we’ve endured this past 10 years that the gallant, if parsimonious, German pug once fought for the title.

But then Joe Louis fought bums too. With the party complete, and with the piñata not opened up in the way one might imagine the Brown Bomber would’ve done following a similar two year absence, Fury’s big present was revealed. Continue reading “Fury pivots and the heavyweight division changes direction too”

Advertisements

Fury, boxing’s Northern Soul, gathers himself for improbable coup

Now my reputation has been one of the fastest men alive
So I’m gonna see how good you are when I count to five.

Archie Bell and The Drells
Gamble and Huff (c) 1969

I don’t ride on roller coasters. Never have. As a kid they terrified me, as most things of the unknown, the uncontrollable usually did. Now decades later, and as fully formed as I’m likely to become, crown exposed and eyes narrowing, the echo of that timid narrator remains as does the preference for control and for certainty. The actions of others, whether my daughter prowling the football fields of Suffolk or unwitting fighters from Feather to Heavyweight, afford me opportunity to marvel at those with the qualities I craved and in this vicarious voyeurism, experience the gnaw of uncertainty and danger without the risk.

There is something of this in my affection for Tyson Fury, the lug from Manchester, with the big heart, bigger appetite and even bigger words. Continue reading “Fury, boxing’s Northern Soul, gathers himself for improbable coup”

A boxing ring, the old truthsayer, humbles Fury on his return.

I know things that are broken can be fixed. Take the punch if you have to, hit the canvas and then get up again. Life is worth it.

Queen Latifah

Such is Tyson Fury’s unique predisposition for the sublime and the absurd, frequently embracing both within the same interview and occasionally a single sentence, we the onlookers, with our garlands of good will and ‘fag-packet psychology, shouldn’t be surprised that even in the confines of the pre-ordained he continued to defy convention.

Where speed was expected, sluggishness was found, where elusiveness was predicted, vulnerability was evident and where power was anticipated, delivery was flawed.

In preview, I’d mooted a scenario in which Tyson Fury could find simply climbing from the well of despair in to which he’d fallen, following his seminal victory over Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015, back to ground zero, back to a debut, essentially, against an overmatched Cruiserweight – which is where it all began a decade ago – could prove sufficient triumph. There was evidence enough in his return bout to suggest, however unlikely, that the possibility remains.

Continue reading “A boxing ring, the old truthsayer, humbles Fury on his return.”

They do Ron, Ron, they do Ron, Ron. Clark beats Barrett.

I don’t know if anyone at ringside could explain what being the Super-Featherweight champion of the East/West of Europe, as sanctioned by the International Boxing Federation, actually means or define the area it covers nor or how effectively it places the custodian in any regional or global hierarchy. A cynic may ask if the East/West of the title’s, erm, title suggests it doesn’t include Northern Europe and subsequently enquire how Ronnie Clark was fighting for it, given he is a born and bred product of one of the continent’s most Northerly cities.

However, the primal scream the eccentric 33-year-old from Dundee let out at the announcement he’d beaten the highly favoured Zelfa Barrett by split decision to earn the honour illustrated, that to him at least, it meant the world. You’ll have to pardon the awful misappropriation. Continue reading “They do Ron, Ron, they do Ron, Ron. Clark beats Barrett.”

Saunders remains unbeaten. No more, no less.

Billy Joe Saunders confirmed his status as a leading contender in the middleweight division tonight with a unanimous decision victory over Willie Monroe Junior at the Copperbox Arena, London.

By keeping his unbeaten record and custody of the World Boxing Organisation’s version of the 160 pound division title, Saunders maintains his leverage in the race to face the winner of tonight’s Golovkin v Alvarez super-fight in Las Vegas. Continue reading “Saunders remains unbeaten. No more, no less.”

Boxing: Cleverly pulls out but still hopeful of landing Hopkins – really?

Despite the lack of substance Robin Krasniqi had on his resume, it is regrettable that the custodian of the WBO‘s Light-heavyweight belt, Nathan Cleverly was unable to defend it against him. For all the clamour for more progressive matchmaking for the young Welshman I’m equally eager to see busy fighters. Too many modern day boxers reach title level, whether domestic or international, and adopt the status of a religious deity. Permitting themselves just one or two public appearances a year.  While fight-figures always maintain fighters are made in gyms, I’m an advocate of the alternate view that fighters develop through competition and activity. One destination you wouldn’t expect this lost fight to lead to however is, Bernard ruddy Hopkins. Continue reading “Boxing: Cleverly pulls out but still hopeful of landing Hopkins – really?”

Boxing: Frank Warren – “It would be a tough fight but even if he got beat, so what?”

I cannot think of a statement of more significance, if it is upheld, than the one Frank Warren delivered to the BBC in his attempt to substantiate the suggestion Nathan Cleverly is being primed for a ‘unification’ fight with Bernard Hopkins later this year. Followers of the noble art are well versed in the model Warren usually employs in his promotion of an unbeaten fighter like Cleverly; offer the fighter every advantage through shrewd matchmaking via the vagaries of the WBO’s ranking system and  home comforts while simultaneously tantalising the public with tales of forthcoming opponents. Continue reading “Boxing: Frank Warren – “It would be a tough fight but even if he got beat, so what?””

The Entertainer – Bradley Pryce back at Welterweight against Bami

Bradley Pryce is arguably the United Kingdom’s best value for money fighter, a telling attribute in these austere times and he will next month return to something approaching his most productive weight class when it is reported he will tackle veteran former European champion Ted Bami at the classic 147 pound limit. Despite his less than pristine personal life as a young professional Pryce has always left everything in the ring come fight night from back in his days as a string-bean Lightweight, his fatigued victory over Gavin Down at 140 pounds, his compulsive dust-up with Michael Jennings  through to his victory over loud-mouth Anthony Small at Light-Middleweight. Pryce has dug deep countless times, snapped unbeaten records when ‘booked’ for defeat and at 29, still has time to do more with his talent. Continue reading “The Entertainer – Bradley Pryce back at Welterweight against Bami”

Smith v Quigley as it happens: Live

Paul SmithGenuine electricity in the air as fellow Liverpudlians clash for the British Super Middleweight title, thankfully officiated by Richie Davies – the most respected referee in the country. Each time these two have met in the build up to this fight, sparks have flown. It could be about who holds their composure in the red-hot arena of the Echo arena. If it does, Smith holds the greater experience. Continue reading “Smith v Quigley as it happens: Live”

Boxing relies on Don King and Terry Dooley for sense and integrity!

donking2For a man accused of just about every sin possible within the parameters of boxing and capable of bamboozling writers with quotes and sentiments drawn from Twain to Churchill it says a lot about the sport he inhabits, that veteran promoter Don King is the sole voice of reason in the aftermath of the Khan v Barrera contest. Well, alongside Terry Dooley at BritishBoxing.net at least. Dooley is a fearless, if slightly dishevelled, writer who can always see through the mist,  and is unafraid of running against the grain. Dooley titled his review of the fight; “Say what you like but Khan should never have won”. Continue reading “Boxing relies on Don King and Terry Dooley for sense and integrity!”

Guest: Barrera’s bloody mess obscures the true worth of Khan’s victory

khanvbarreraHaving clung tight to my £14.95 last weekend, Amir Khan is not presently a pay-per-view attraction regardless of the affection with which I hold his opponent – in this case Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera, I’m delighted to provide a forum for guest writer Ben Carey’s view of the contentious clash between the aspiring Khan and the jaded Barrera. Continue reading “Guest: Barrera’s bloody mess obscures the true worth of Khan’s victory”

Crack the Fig Rolls, Jennings v Cotto is live!

CottoFollowing a day of two of consternation among boxing fans, and particularly those in possession of a Setanta subscription, the now widely reported news Michael Jennings attempt to overcome Miguel Cotto tomorrow night will shown live by the Irish based network will be warmly welcomed. Whatever the reasons for the hiatus, and the fact Jennings contract with Frank Warren with regard television rights overlaps with Setanta’s contract to show Top Rank fighters (Cotto) appears to have been the crux of the issue, the main thing is nice guy Mick will be live on British screens for the biggest night of his life. Continue reading “Crack the Fig Rolls, Jennings v Cotto is live!”

Jennings v Cotto; Setanta coverage unconfirmed

JenningsTo many, this fight is of little less than passing interest. Miguel Cotto predictably rebuilding from his shattering loss to Antonio Margarito with a regulation comeback fight against Michael Jennings – a fighter with a pretty record and precious little experience at elite level. Its an industry standard tactic for the Puerto Rican Welterweight. However, to me the fight holds far more appeal.

Continue reading “Jennings v Cotto; Setanta coverage unconfirmed”

Calzaghe and Warren doth protest too much; the Stockholm syndrome

There isn’t a facet of Joe Calzaghe and former promoter Frank Warren’s current activity which couldn’t be labelled, ‘old ground’. Firstly, Calzaghe next tackles faded superstar Roy Jones, 39, in a bout so out of date, so out of fashion, its almost coming back in style. Secondly, Calzaghe’s split from Warren at the peak of his earning-power and ensuing court cases and law suits has echoes of Ricky Hatton’s 2005 departure. Thirdly, the use of media columns to launch critiques of the ethics and morals of the other party is all to familiar too. None of those stir me from a long yawn, but a fourth strand to their disagreement does. Continue reading “Calzaghe and Warren doth protest too much; the Stockholm syndrome”

Froch LIVE on ITV1! Loyalty prevails

Bright news from the much mocked Hennessy Sport today, as the stable of Froch, Witter and Barker signs up with terrestrial broadcaster ITV. News of a television deal has been doing the rounds all summer, but many observers suspected satellite newcomer Setanta was most likely to add them to their roster following the ill-tempered departure of Frank Warren’s Sports Network stable of fighters. A move Setanta continue to contest. Today’s news means the ever loyal, ever patient Carl Froch will fight Jean Pascal for the vacant WBC Super-Middleweight title on prime-time mainstream television. As a fan of Froch, I’m thrilled to bits.

Continue reading “Froch LIVE on ITV1! Loyalty prevails”

Oliver Harrison, Amir Khan and the final word; blame

I’m struggling to summon a fight in recent memory to which more attention has been paid. Certainly, the column inches afforded to Amir Khan’s humbling defeat is entirely disproportionate to the superficial importance of the Inter-Continental bauble he and Breidis Prescott scuffled over on Saturday night. Of course, Amir Khan is not merely ‘just another’ fighter, Andrew Mullinder provides one final analysis of the fight, the aftermath and that most emotive of topics, blame. Continue reading “Oliver Harrison, Amir Khan and the final word; blame”

Audley, Audley, Audley

Love him, hate him, ignore him, beat him, write him off, mock him, chastise him, heck, tie an anvil to each ankle and drop him in the Thames. It wouldn’t matter, Big Audley would still be believing, still fighting, still chasing the dream. I’m beginning to think Harrison has special powers, the hide of a Rhino, the defiance of the Black Knight and will of Arnie’s Terminator.  Despite being jeered to and from the ring, despite failing to overwhelm a man he outweighed by 3 stone and despite the proximity of his 37th birthday, Audley will not give up. Continue reading “Audley, Audley, Audley”

Video: Amir Khan mimicks Judah’s ‘chicken dance’

Seeing Amir Khan laid out like a flat-packed bookcase on Saturday, with his head propped against the ring post in the style of a teenager watching Batman re-runs on the portable reminded me of one of the first times he came to the public’s attention. Coincidentally, he was mimicking the Zab Judah inspired ‘chicken’ dance he show-cased when hit by a Prescott punch on Saturday following a less formidable left-hook from Craig Watson back in the Amateurs. Continue reading “Video: Amir Khan mimicks Judah’s ‘chicken dance’”

“Nobody is invisible”, Amir Khan explains

It is hard to know where to begin a review of the shattered remnants of Amir Khan’s fastidiously constructed repute. Following 4 years of painfully cautious match-making, three trainers and a deluge of column inches, platitudes, award ceremonies and celebrity television appearances the 21-year old demonstrated holes in his fistic education large enough to drive even his ego through. In a slip of the tongue, Khan said “nobody is invisible”, he meant invincible of course, but invisible seemed to fit very well too. Breidis Prescott certainly found him easily enough. Continue reading ““Nobody is invisible”, Amir Khan explains”

Archive: Scott of the anarchic

The sorry tale of Scott Harrison lurched to a new low this week when he was sentenced to a total of 8 months imprisonment for assaulting his girlfriend and a police-officer alongside being found guilty of driving whilst 4-times over the legal limit. Should Harrison remain at Her Majesty’s service for the entire sentence, he will emerge, squinting at the crumbled remnants of his life, a fast-approaching 32nd birthday and over 3 years of professional inactivity. Not to mention a destructive thirst he can never quench.

Continue reading “Archive: Scott of the anarchic”

Harsh home truths for Alex Arthur

Until Alex Arthur starts beating world-class fighters instead of simply being trained by them his tenure as WBO Super-Featherweight champion will never be widely regarded as anything other than opportunistic. It isn’t that Arthur is without ability, nor I suspect, is it because the Edinburgh man fears the division’s elite contenders, but with the long-shadows of Jim Watt and Ken Buchanan falling across his achievements, he will need to beat someone like Joan Guzman or Juan Manuel Marquez to be taken seriously alongside his predecessors. Continue reading “Harsh home truths for Alex Arthur”

Is this the bottom for Scott Harrison, or can he fall further?

The story of Scott Harrison the fighter, and he was a competent world-level operator at his best, is close to becoming a footnote in the life of the former two-time WBO Featherweight belt holder. Today, having pleaded guilty to assaulting girlfriend Stacy Gardner and an attendant police officer, the gruff former fighter was sentenced to two months imprisonment. Continue reading “Is this the bottom for Scott Harrison, or can he fall further?”

PPV featuring Amir Khan, Alex Arthur and erm…

Bad luck is just that. Bad luck. Contingencies can be prepared up to a point, but the misfortune befalling Frank Warren’s compilation of a value for money PPV card this weekend is going beyond what any matchmaker could allow for. First, Paul Smith’s revenge mission with Steve Bendall fell by the wayside, then Martin Rogan couldn’t quell the pain in his hands to face Harrison and now Stephen Foster Jnr has pulled out on Femi Fehintola with less than a week to go.

Continue reading “PPV featuring Amir Khan, Alex Arthur and erm…”

Audley Harrison and the search for a foe

It isn’t Audley Harrison’s fault Martin Rogan has been forced to withdraw at the eleventh hour but there is an air of inevitability about the doom and gloom surrounding Harrison’s attempt at a comeback. Harrison cannot complain of his misfortune too much, he’s a wealthy man who has lost every fight of meaning in his professional career and aged 36 is very fortunate to be afforded the attention he still attracts. Continue reading “Audley Harrison and the search for a foe”

There is no such thing as a free punch; the PPV debate

Guest writer Andrew Mullinder comments on the furore surrounding the announcement Amir Khan’s next bout is to cost  SKY subscribers an additional £14.99 to watch, despite featuring an unknown Colombian and lacking the global significance typically found at the core of most pay-per view contests. An astonishing step, and one Frank Warren appeared aware, looks opportunisitic and premature. Mullinder however, has grown a little tired of the boxing fans’ bluster and bleating about PPV and while it doesn’t have the withering zing of Terry Dooley’s article this morning, Andrew makes an interesting point. Continue reading “There is no such thing as a free punch; the PPV debate”

Video of Amir Khan foe Breidis Prescott in action

I’ll not be indulging SKY next month, there is no hope what so ever of the satellite broadcaster’s flashy advertising campaigns convincing me that Amir Khan is a PPV attraction. Nor will I succumb to the overt and subliminal suggestion his opponent, Colombian Breidis Prescott, is a foe of such brilliance that to miss the PPV could mean I miss Khan being beaten. Continue reading “Video of Amir Khan foe Breidis Prescott in action”

“Verbal contracts aren’t worth the paper they’re written on”

Voicing an opinion without concrete foundation on a legal case involving Frank Warren is rather like smothering your tongue in honey, sticking your head in a bees nest and trying to sing “Are you lonesome tonight”, bottom line is, you’re going to get stung. With that reality in mind, I’ll tip-toe through the news he has brought a case against departed superstar Joe Calzaghe for Breach of Contract.

Continue reading ““Verbal contracts aren’t worth the paper they’re written on””

Battle of the Som-brero; give ol’ Gomez a chance

Matchmaking is a funny business. Not funny “haha”, funny “ooh”. As my Grandad would often say. There is simply no right and wrong methodology or barometer for matchmakers. If the house fighters wins, you’ve got it right. If the house fighters wins easily you’ve got it right but perhaps too right, because the audience want competition not a procession. In fact, getting it ‘too’ right can sometimes be wrong. But still better that, than simply getting it wrong. Are you keeping up?

Continue reading “Battle of the Som-brero; give ol’ Gomez a chance”

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑