Boxing: Hide must seek better credentials
Monday 28 September 1998
"People have said I'm too small to be able to beat Lennox, but I'm not as small as Mavrovic and he did well enough," said Hide. "Mavrovic doesn't punch anywhere near as hard as me; I'm bigger and stronger than Mavrovic, and I'm much, much faster."
Against Fischer, Hide proved once more that what he lacks in size by contemporary heavyweight standards - he weighed 15st 10lb for this second defence of his second tenure as WBO champion - he makes up for with speed, accuracy and aggressive intent. Fischer, whose brow was already heavily furrowed when he entered the ring with a won-lost-drawn record of 21-1- 1 (16 KOs), was taken apart in round two when Hide floored the German the requisite number of times for the fight to be terminated under the WBO's three-knockdown (in one round) rule.
It was an impressive performance by the champion, who won his 31st fight (30 by KO) against one defeat (to Riddick Bowe for this title in March 1995). But there is very little chance of a WBC-WBO unification bout with Lewis taking place in the near future - at present there just is not enough interest to make it worth Lewis's while.
A series of spectacular victories over respected opposition would aid Hide's cause; without even breaking sweat, Hide can blow away lesser lights like Fischer. But Lewis would be another matter entirely and Hide needs to establish a more impressive set of credentials before American television would accept him as an opponent for the WBC champion.
The evening ended in utter disappointment for another Norwich fighter, Jon Thaxton, who was stopped after two minutes, 14 seconds of round seven by an unsung American substitute, Emanuel Burton. Thaxton lost his WBO and International Boxing Federation Intercontinental light-welterweight championships. The result was a considerable upset. The 24-year-old had been the WBO's No 1 contender for some time and an attempt on the sanctioning body's title proper cannot have been far away.
The defeat - Thaxton's fourth in 20 fights - was a major blow not only for Thaxton, but also for Frank Warren, who has lost a major ticket-seller; Thaxton has regularly been used to prop up Norfolk cards featuring Hide, whose catalogue of brushes with the law has left him somewhat unpopular in his home area.
Geoffrey Macnab reviews American Hustle, also starring Christian Bale and Bradley Cooper
Michelle Nijhuis' daughter insists (s)he is, and she learnt a valuable lesson on gender in books
It takes a platoon of chefs, litres of brandy and rum, and almost 100kg of dried fruit
Latest in Sport
Arsenal can surprise Bayern Munich in the Champions League, says former midfielder Gilberto Silva
Transfer news: Liverpool - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Manchester United - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Chelsea - January transfer targets
Transfer news: Arsenal - Transfer targets for January
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 3 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber is 'retiring from music'
- 4 Iain Duncan Smith leaves Commons food banks debate early
- 5 Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
£500 - £650 per day: Harrington Starr: Excellent opportunity for Murex Subject...
£6.31 per day: Inspiring Interns: One of the biggest names in sport is offerin...
£500 - £650 per day: Harrington Starr: Harrington Starr is working with a Glob...
£27000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Junior Consultant (Excel, Financial Spread...