Boxing: Hide battles to revive career by avenging Chingangu defeat

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The Independent Online

Good heavyweights and bad heavyweights can come back from defeats, but it is the way they gain revenge that makes the difference.

Herbie Hide is a good heavyweight who, during a long and often erratic career, has won the British title and managed to win and lose the World Boxing Organisation heavyweight title twice. But tonight he faces the most important fight of his career.

In the opposite corner will be Zambia's Joseph Chingangu, who knocked out Hide in two very bad-tempered rounds in September 2001. Hide claimed that he had been hit behind the ear after the bell and he never really recovered.

After the defeat, which had been meant to be the start of a build-up on the BBC to a showdown against Audley Harrison, Hide moved with his wife and two children to Las Vegas to reflect on his ruined career and contemplate his options.

Last September he was back in the gym and last month he returned to Britain for a simple tune-up win in anticipation of tonight's showdown at the Goresbrook Leisure Centre in Dagenham, Essex.

Chingangu's career never really took off after his shock win against Hide; he has been stopped since and is far from being a world-ranked opponent.

However, heavyweights suffer terribly from the memory of defeats, so it is essential that Hide gets Chingangu out of his mind by beating him if he is to resurrect his career.

Hide, who during the last six weeks has managed to insult Harrison and the current British heavyweight champion Danny Williams on several occasions, said yesterday: "I have had a lot of time to think about that night when Chingangu beat me and a lot of nights to plan revenge. That is all that I am thinking about right now.''

Hide knows that defeat will almost certainly end his career prematurely, but he also knows that anything other than a stoppage win will not be good enough.