Boxing: Graham faces an evening of hard work

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The Independent Online
Age will be of no concern when Herol Graham and Vinnie Pazienza make renewed bids for world honours on Frank Maloney's heavily hyped "Good v Bad" promotion at the Wembley Arena tonight.

The fact that Graham is 38 and Pazienza 34 has done nothing to reduce the appeal of an intriguing fight which has stirred interest on both sides of the Atlantic. Graham is well-respected in America, notably for his close-call world title fights against Mike McCallum and Julian Jackson, while the colourful Pazienza is ever-popular in his homeland - for just being Pazienza.

It will be Graham's first defence of his World Boxing Council super-middleweight title, and his first Wembley appearance for eight years. Defeat would most likely send the Sheffield southpaw tumbling down the rankings as quick as he climbed them following his outstanding win over Canada's fancied Chris Johnson in July.

Pazienza, from Rhode Island, has made a full recovery from a broken neck sustained in a car accident six years ago. Doctors told him he would never walk again, let alone box.

"Herol can't stay with me," Pazienza said. "I bring a lot to the ring - speed, power, movement and I do little things people don't see.

"I fight more for the thrill. Someone who fights like me doesn't do it for the money. I fight like someone has just beat up my mother."

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