By Dave Lahr: For the boxing fans who are still in the dark about whether former 2004 Olympic Gold medalist Odlanier Solis (17-1, 12 KO’s) had a pre-existing injury to his right knee before his fight with WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko (42-2, 39 KO’s) last Saturday night in Cologne, Germany, Solis’ promoter Ahmet Oner cleared up the mess with a press release today. Orner said “This rumous is based on a false quotation in the German press. Everybody knows that there are a lot of medical tests for fighters who want to compete in a world tittle fight.”
Oner is right, of course. There is no way that Solis could have gotten through the battery of medical tests that are performed on each fighter before a championship bout of this magnitude. The medical exams go through the whole nine yards, checking the fighters from top to bottom to make sure they’re fit to fight. In Solis’ case, he got hurt by a short punch while he was off balance while in the process of throwing a punch at Vitali at the end of the 1st round. Vitali’s punch was a nothing shot, more like a push than an actual punch. Solis stepped wrong while backing up and torqued his right knee, damaging it in the process.
If Solis had a bad injury going into the fight he wouldn’t have been able to bounce around the ring like he was doing in the fight. Solis was really light on his feet for a fighter weighing 246, and looked very impressive. There wasn’t any sign of a limp or him favoring one leg over the other. Solis simply hurt his knee while he backing away rather than from a punch.