Posts Tagged ‘Boxing’

Written by Rod Crowley: There are very few boxing fans anywhere who would disagree that the Amir Khan v Lamont Peterson fight for world light-welterweight championship was a cracking encounter. There are however, many who would disagree with the outcome which awarded the American Peterson the verdict by majority decision after 12 thunderous rounds and in somewhat controversial circumstances.

It was certainly a decision that will divide opinion with the first salvo being fired by Khan himself who stated at the end of the fight that he thought he was fighting both Peterson and the referee, Joseph Cooper. He may of course have a point but his constant pushing and holding infringements cost him two in rounds seven and 12 and although he had Peterson of the deck in Round One, it was not enough on at least two of the judges’ cards to redress the balance.

It is certainly true that Khan was the better boxer, his dazzlingly speed and accuracy at times had a mesmeric effect on Peterson but the American showed far more determination, spending plenty of time chasing the back-peddling Khan around the ring. It was probably this more than anything else, that swayed the judge’s decision but he also hurt Khan with a number of jaw trembling upper cuts, followed by overhand rights and a host of hefty blows into the solar plexus that forced Khan to continually retreat.

Peterson also had a very vociferous home crowd behind him in Washington DC, which brings into question the match making qualities of Khan’s handlers. The fact that Khan lost in what was a very commendable voluntary defence of his two world crowns was bad enough but to lose them in the home town of his opponent was either a show of extreme boxing arrogance or match-making madness but it was a decision that certainly had a significant influence on the outcome of the fight, whether it was the support, the bias of judges or a combination of both.

It makes one believe that the Khan team underestimated Lamont Peterson, it was obvious to most that Peterson is not only a decent fighter, beaten only once which came at the hands of Timothy Bradley for the WBO Light-Welterweight title exactly three years earlier, a title that Bradley still holds. They also failed to appreciate that Peterson had never been stopped and although not the biggest puncher in the world, he has great timing. However, an even more important fact that Khan’s people forgot to acknowledge is the fact the Peterson is a Washington DC folk hero and he was going to be no pushover on home soil.

Peterson’s success in the Boxing ring is seen as a genuine “rags to riches” story that the folks of DC love to hear about and it is why they have adopted him as one of their heroes. A fight in DC therefore, in hindsight, is one that Khan’s team must be questioned about.

That said, Khan in fact started the bout very well and possibly could have won it in the opening round. He had Peterson down twice, although the first of those was ruled a slip by the referee, there was however no doubt about the other. The dogged Peterson was up quickly and although bamboozled by the speed of Khan’s fists, held on grimly until the bell sounded.

After that, the fight effectively became a brawl, with both men connecting regularly with Peterson able to bring Khan down to his level. Each time he struck Khan on the chin, Khan began to anger the crowd by showboating and taunting. It was as if he was trying to make the point that his renowned “glass jaw” that was so brutally exposed in his first round knock-out defeat by Breidis Prescott three years ago, had somehow metamorphosed into granite. Nonetheless, Khan stayed on his feet throughout the 12 hectic rounds but to little avail come the final bell.

The three judges scored the fight 113-112, 113-112 for Peterson and 114-111 for Khan, a majority decision for the American, made good by the two deducted points. 

Peterson was quick to confirm that he would be delighted to give Khan a re-match next year sometime but whether or not that happens and particularly whether it takes place in Washington DC or not remains to be seen. Team Khan will not be underestimating Peterson again!


It is sad to report that Joe Frazier has lost his fight with cancer and has passed away at 67, Frazier had been omitted to a hospice over the weekend for treatment on liver cancer but the disease was to far advanced to find successful treatment for the former heavyweight champion.

Lennox Lewis has been leading the tributes the Frazier, Lewis added: “I am extremely saddened at the news of the passing of former World Heavyweight Champion Smokin’ Joe Frazier.  He made history in the greatest era ever of heavyweight boxing and his contributions to the sport are profound and immeasurable.

“My deepest sympathies go out to the Frazier family during this time of loss and grief and I would like them to know that they are in my prayers.  He will be missed but never forgotten.  May he rest in peace.”

Floyd Mayweather has also offered to cover the funeral costs.

Joe Frazier was well respected within the world of sport, especially in Boxing where he always be regarded as one of the greatest.

Frazier only found out about the diagnosis last month and his family released the following statement; “We The Family of the 1964 Olympic Boxing Heavyweight Gold Medalist, Former Heavyweight Boxing Champion and International Boxing Hall of Fame Member Smokin’ Joe Frazier, regrets to inform you of his passing.

He transitioned from this life as “One of God’s Men,” on the eve of November 7, 2011 at his home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We thank you for your prayers for our Father and vast outpouring of love and support.

Respectfully, we request time to grieve privately as a family. Our father’s home going celebration will be announced as soon as possible. Thank you for your understanding.”

Frazier was reported to have lost 50 pounds and friends like Rev. Jesse Jackson and fellow heavyweight king Larry Holmes requested visits, but Frazier decided against it.

“Joe doesn’t want to see anybody, the way he is now,” his manager Les Wolff explained earlier this week. “I think you can understand why. He’s a proud man.”

Joe Frazier was one of the greatest to grace the sport, Frazier fought professionally from 1965 to 1981, capturing the WBA and WBC heavyweight titles. He defeated Muhammad Ali in 1971, which was the high point of Frazier’s career. Before turning pro, Frazier won a gold medal in the 1964 Olympics.

Ali vs Frazier was the biggest rivalry in any sport, Smokin Joe Frazier fought in the golden era of Boxing during the 70’s in which he became world champion.

RIP Smokin Joe Frazier – A True Great!

Muhammad Ali has joined the legions of sporting icons in hoping that Joe Frazier can continue to fight and will rise up once again to beat the count and pull through is biggest battle of all time, news had circulated over the weekend that the 67-year-old was gravely ill and being treated in a hospice for liver cancer.

Ali, who fought Frazier three times and Ali recorded his first professional loss against Smokin Joe after going on to win the last two battles these two had.

Ali vs. Frazier fights was always be held in high esteem, The “Thrilla in Manila” went down as one of the greatest battles to take place in the world of boxing.

Ali said, “The news about Joe is hard to believe and even harder to accept. Joe is a fighter and a champion and I am praying he is fighting now.

“My family are keeping Joe and his family in our daily prayers. Joe has a lot of friends pulling for him – and I’m one of them.”

Frazier was the first man to beat Muhammad Ali, knocking him down and taking a decision in the so-called Fight of the Century in 1971. He would go on to lose two more fights to Ali, including the epic Thrilla in Manila bout in 1975.

The pairs relationship had remained as fragile as it was when both were fighters; Ali always taunted Frazier, referring to Joe as a ‘Gorilla’ and ‘Uncle Tom’. It was the Uncle Tom that Frazier found it difficult to forgive him.

In recent years it had been reported that the pair had buried the hatchet and had been on better terms.

At the turn of the last century women in the western world were finding a voice, both collectively and individually. As the Victorian era lapsed in to memory and the Edwardian Era commenced many women chose to pursue sports. Some women chose to flaunt convention and compete in sports that, even today, are not thought of as traditional womens’ sports. Some of these vintage pictures from the Edwardian Era (and just beyond) may surprise you. Yet these few representatives are surely testament to (under represented photograhically) a greater percentage of the women of the past who were unafraid to pursue their sporting ambitions in a still male dominated world.

You may well have seen the movie starring Madonna and Geena Davis, A League of Their Own about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL) which was founded in 1943.  Back in 1913, however, there were the New York Female Giants.  There was a red team and a blue team.  The idea did not take off permanantly, unfortunately, yet the first girls of summer, women who were made their living playing baseball had competed in their first game as far back as 1875.

Notice the male catcher definitely one of the NY (male) Giants catchers.This could possibly have been some sort of exhibition game as there were two female teams.  You can only wonder how badly the men were beaten by the women.

The Bennett Sisters – we are not talking Jane and Elizabeth, plus there is no sign of Mr Darcy anywhere.  This picture was taken between 1910 and 1915 and the sisters were not professional boxers but a Vaudeville Act.  Yet that was perhaps one of the few places at the time that you could see something like this.  Yes, they wrestled too.

Althoug it seem surprising (perhaps) the US had, since late the nineteenth century, held women’s wrestling championships and championesses were proclaimed.  One of the above is possibly Laura Bennett who dominated the sport in the early 1900s.

If you think that the Bennett Sisiters were alone, you would be wrong.  Above, Mrs. Edwards and Faurlein Kussin who met in the boxing ring at a bout on March 7 1912 – just a month before the Titanic sank.

In fact,women were everywhere in things of a sporting nature.  Can you guess in which sport the woman below participated?

It was everything to do with the burgeoning science of flight and although not considered a sport, this woman was something else – and very much connected with sport and just about everything else.  This is Hélène Dutrieu and the picture was taken in September 1911 when she was 34. Before this, however she had been a famous professional track cyclist and had created a new world record for the distance cycled by a woman in an hour in 1895.  In later years she was a stunt cyclist (with motorbikes too), automobile racer, and variety show performer.  But there is more…

This picture was taken when she visited the US to compete for the women’s altitude record.  Later, during the First World War she became an abulance driver and a director for a military hospital.  As you have gathered, she wasn’t one to let her gender set her back.

Dutrieu may have shocked people with her independant spirit but our next woman shocked people with her ankles.  Although she was born in the UK her family moved to California when she was six.  She and her three sisters, Violet, Florence (pictured below) and Ethel were the queens of the California tennis circuit and she took the US Championship when she was 18, in 1904.  The four of them must have been the Venus and Serena and Venus and Serena of their day.

What did she do that was so shocking?  Prepare to gasp. In 1905 she competed at Wimbledon (winning the Women’s title).  Unable to compete in her normal tennis attire she rolled up her sleeves – and showed her bare elbows to the world.  Not only that, she wore a skirt that was so high it revealed her ankles, shocking the British audience and giving them something to talk about over their tea and cucumber sandwiches.

In fact, during the Edwardian era women were doing a remarkable amount of sport, some of which was caught on camera. They batted.

They bowled…

They toboganned.

They fenced.

They played soccer.

Image Credit Flickr User Nationaal Archief

Image Credit Flickr User Library of Congress

Image Credit Flickr User Library of Congress

It wouldn’t be cricket, really, without mentioning that noblest of games.  The Edwardian Era, itself not as gleeful as many like to think, gave way to the darkness of the First World War.  In a state of total war, many women joined up.  Yet there was still time to be found to have some fun with a bat and ball.
Image Credit Flickr User National Library of Scotland

This was a long post so thanks for hanging around till the end.  It has hardly hit the surface either and we hope – with your help – to explore the role of women in sport further.  For now, we will take our leave with a final shot, taken around 1900 of Miss Elaine Golding.  The daughter of Ethel Golding, the champion lady swimmer of the world. Elaine had been immersed in swimming since infancy and was dubbed a seven-year-old wonder, taking part in exhibitions of diving and swimming.  Take it away, Elaine.

On November 4, 2009, this film was made to witness the private press-only Pacquiao training session at the WildCard Boxing Club in Los Angeles.  This was prior to the Pacquiao vs. Cotto fight.

Manny Pacquiao, is a Filipino professional boxer who has also entered the world of politics and is revered by his many fans. He is an the first (and therefore only) boxer in history to win ten world titles in eight different weight divisions.

At the same time he is  also the first boxer in history to win the lineal championship in four different weight classes. He was declared Fighter of the Decade for the 2000’s by the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA). He is also a three-time BWAA and The Ring Fighter of the Year” in 2006, 2008 and 2009.

Here is the exclusive footage from that legendary day.

Former undisputed Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis has warned current champion David Haye not to underestimate Audley Harrison when they face each other at the MEN Arena this Saturday.

Lewis has suggested that Audley has more than enough in his locker to knock out David Haye and has warned against complacency. Lennox Lewis knows only too well what a shock punch can do to you when it lands, having lost to American Oliver McCall at Wembley, going down to a sucker punch.

Although Haye is a favourite, David must not underestimate Audley.

“Audley realises this time is now or never,” he said. “He sounds very confident.

“Audley’s definitely got the power to stun the world and upset everybody’s thinking. It’s another great fight for Britain
“It will be a good fight. I think David Haye is a better boxer. He can get off his combinations quicker. But Audley is a consummate pro. He is an Olympic champion and that is a great pedigree.”

Lewis doesn’t subscribe to the view that Harrison lacks heart.

He said: “OK, there have been a couple of stumbling blocks. But he is still here. That shows he has the desire to succeed.”

Ricky Hatton has suffered a major blow after British Boxing Board of Control stripped him of stripped him three licences after he was found guilty of bringing the sport into disrepute following allegation from the News of the World newspaper about Ricky Hatton’s private life.

A British Boxing Board of Control statement said, “The Board is especially concerned to keep the sport of boxing free from drugs, whether taken for recreational or performance enhancing reasons and to be vigilant in identifying and dealing with cases of alcohol abuse.

“At the hearing, the Board found Ricky Hatton guilty of misconduct in that his actions and behaviour were detrimental to the interests of boxing and to the public interest and that he had brought the sport into disrepute.

“Ricky Hatton is not an active boxer and his current physical condition is such that the Board decided to withdraw his boxer’s licence.

“Ricky Hatton’s Manager’s and Second’s licences allow him to have close, day to day contact with participants in the sport and the Board has taken the view that his conduct and present circumstances make such contact wholly inappropriate.

“Consequently, the Board has decided to withdraw such licences.

“The Board gave long and hard consideration as to whether or not to withdraw or suspend his Promoter’s licence.

“Having considered all the circumstances, in particular the role of Promoter, as opposed to that of Manager or Second, the fact that Hatton Promotions is a large organisation employing a number of experienced individuals in varying roles, including professional persons, and the effect upon innocent persons, including professional boxers, the Board concluded that justice would not be served by withdrawing his Promoter’s licence.

“Therefore, his Promoter’s licence remains. In addition, Mr. Hatton was fined £20,000 plus costs.”