British boxing on the rise
By Stuart Mcleod: Throughout boxing history Britain has had many champions held in high regard such as Lennox Lewis, Henry Cooper, John Conteh, Frank Bruno, Prince Naseem etc… the list goes on. Britain has also had its fair share of domestic dust ups for world titles such as the Benn v Eubank trilogy, Collins who fought both, Bruno v Lewis, Buchanan v Watt. British boxing has always produced stars that have eventually gone on to fight in America and produce the goods when it has been needed.
The British boxing scene has recently had a revival in producing exciting fighters and up coming hopefuls who will maybe one day emulate the greats like Hatton and Calzaghe but what is disappointing is the criticisms that are thrown at them when many of these boxers are starting out in their chosen career. It seems unacceptable for boxers such as Kell Brook, Nathan Cleverly, Tyson Fury to be fighting second tear opposition so early on even though boxers who have the talent will be protected and asked to learn their trade.
Amir Khan is one such fighter who even I had doubts about, came through a war against Maidiana and still he has critics saying he was protected by the ref or actually lost. This of course is ridiculous as if you look at the stats which are quite easy to find online, is there in black and white. Haye has also had a rough ride from boxing critics due to the awful performance of Harrison in his last fight but you can only beat what is put in front of you. Haye has been lambasted for not fighting one of the Klitschko’s yet but this all comes down to one thing and that is money.
Chisora took the fight with Wladamir which was called off due to Wladimir’s injury he received whilst training but most people in the boxing world thought Chisora would have no chance and why was this young pup even being put in the ring with a Klitschko. If Chisora carried on fighting second tier opposition for his next few fights I am sure he would have been accused of taking it easy and being over protected. This was not the case and he stepped up to the plate but his dream was snatched away for the time being.
The terms and conditions offered to Chisora were pretty mind blowing regarding rematch clauses and payments of money but he was hungry enough to look through that and have a go at the belt. Haye has other motivations in that he would rather unify the titles his own way and earn exactly what he thinks he is worth which is why he hasn’t fought either brother yet. Haye has said that he will retire next year and is out to get what he can. I am not going to blame Haye for doing this as unfortunately in this day and age boxing always comes down to promoters and money. There have been great British fighters that have won world titles and ended up penniless or in disarray after their careers have ended such as Turpin, Buchanan, Scott Harrison, Bruno. Even recent fighters like Hatton and Calzaghe have ended up in the news for the wrong reasons probably due to the fact that something that they have done for so many years has stopped so they have mixed in the wrong circles.
Carl Froch produced a great display against Abraham but there were still the outcries that Dirrell had softened the tough Armenian-German up. All Carl did was go in and produce a spot on performance that any champion would be proud of. Yet again the small minority of so called boxing analysts have not seen fit to lay into any good points on Froch’s display even after many observers thought that Froch would be shut out by Abraham and his power punching.
Like Amir did against Madienna, Froch was in and out with heavy fast punches but this apparently is called running in some turns. Dirrell run most of the night against Froch but Americans seem to think he is the best thing since sliced bread. He may have been, but due to medical problems we may not know for that in a while. Andre Ward was in a terrible fight last time against Sakio Bika but still he is apparently one for the future. America is struggling to find many champions in each division and it is pretty impossible to find a future heavyweight as the Europeans have taken over that mantle. Before any criticism is levelled at the state of British boxing, maybe some analysts should look closer to home and wonder where they are going wrong as the Mayweather’s of the world will only be around for a short time before they have made enough money and disappeared into the history books.
Whether the Cleverly’s of this world have a bad night or Khan gets wobbled again, who cares. It is all part of boxing. You can be a good boxer and be accused of running. You can be in a slugging match and then get knocked out and be accused of not boxing. You can box from the outside and be accused of slapping. Some boxers like to work on the inside but then we are told they spoilt the fight. None of this matters as long as the job gets done and that is what British boxers do. They have got the job done when asked apart from the odd blip such as Harrison which is of course an embarrassment. British boxing is on the rise and the young stars of the future ie Degale should not be rushed or lambasted for not fighting too soon. Britain is only a small country but when it finds a star it burns bright and usually for some time.
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