Boxing: Respected ref Harry Gibbs dies at age of 79
Wednesday 17 November 1999
In a career which spanned more than 30 years, Gibbs is best remembered for awarding Joe Bugner a points verdict over Henry Cooper at Wembley Arena in their controversial heavyweight title fight in 1971. Cooper refused to speak to him for more than 20 years until they finally made up.
Gibbs, who was awarded the OBE for his services to sport and his work for charity, refereed over 40 world title fights across the globe involving greats such as Muhammad Ali, Sonny Liston and Sugar Ray Robinson.
Larry O'Connell, another of Britain's leading referees, told of the comfort he gained from his mentor after his controversial judging of the first Lennox Lewis versus Evander Holyfield world title fight.
O'Connell, who was pilloried in some quarters after scoring the fight a draw, said: "Harry was one of the first to phone me and tell me that as long as I was honest that was all that mattered.
"I looked up to Harry and he encouraged me when I first started. He was never critical, always constructive. He gave respect and got it. Harry was extremely British and I just hope he saw Lennox Lewis become undisputed champion on Saturday night - that would have made him proud."
John Morris, the outgoing British Boxing Board of Control general secretary, said: "We have lost a wonderful man, a great referee and a fine friend."
Meanwhile Mike Tyson, the former undisputed heavyweight champion, will return to the ring on Saturday, 15 January, in either the United Kingdom or Germany. Tyson's opponent for the contest has yet to be named.
Latest in Sport
WWE Raw results: Brock Lesnar suspended for post-Wrestlemania 31 rampage after losing title to Seth Rollins
Raheem Sterling interview: No amount of money can convince Sterling to stay at Liverpool
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England shirt is now
The 10 potential biggest transfers of the summer: Raheem Sterling, Theo Walcott and Radamel Falcao in the mix
Liverpool injury news: Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge, Adam Lallana and Dejan Lovren expected to be ready for Arsenal clash
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 6-year-old writes ice cold Valentine's card to his stepmother
- 5 Syrian child photographed 'surrendering to camera because she thought it was a gun'
Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
Katie Hopkins reported to the police for race hatred by Labour MP Simon Danczuk after tweet about Pakistani men
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a security software com...
£10000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This provider of staffing and r...
£19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the four inns of Court is seeking...
£20000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the four inns of Court i...