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Abraham To Defend Vs. Murray

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***Abraham defends WBO title against Murray on November 21 in Hannover***

‘King’ Arthur Abraham (43-4, 29 KOs) will defend his WBO World Super Middleweight Championship against Britain’s Martin Murray (32-2-1, 15 KOs) on November 21 at the TUI Arena in Hannover, Germany.

Abraham, the 35 year-old from Berlin, will be aiming for a fifth successive defence of his WBO strap following a devastating sixth-round technical knockout victory over domestic rival Robert Stieglitz, and the two-time World Champion is expecting a tough test against his battle hardened opponent Murray.

‘’Martin is a very strong opponent,’’ said Abraham. ‘’He has challenged for World titles three times before and on two of those occasion he should of won. He is a very deserving challenger and I think it will be a good fight. That is what the public want to see – the best fighting the best – and that is what they will see on November 21 in Hannover.’’

Abraham is no stranger to fighting British opposition. Most recently he squared off against former British Champion Paul Smith in two competitive championship contests. As he prepares to face another Brit, the German fighter has drawn comparisons between Murray and his former opponent.

‘’Martin is a very different type of fighter than Paul,’’ said Abraham. ‘’He is more experienced and has fought at a much higher level. When I fought Paul I was the best opponent he had faced but Martin has fought at this level before so I expect this fight to be a tougher challenge.’’

Murray, from St Helens, England, will be hoping to claim World honours at the fourth time of asking. Having made the move up to super middleweight, following a brave attempt at the formidable Kazakh Gennady Golovkin’s middleweight titles, the 33 year-old has recorded three wins inside the distance, and believes now the time has come for him to claim boxing’s ultimate prize.

“I am thrilled to have the chance to face Arthur for the WBO World Super Middleweight title,’’ said Murray. ‘’I was shocked when Arthur agreed to the fight, it’s one he didn’t have to take so must be confident but in at my natural weight now and believe on November 21 I will become World champion.

“It’s the fight that I targeted when I chose to move up to Super Middleweight and it’s one that I am confident of winning. I know that Arthur is a great champion and a tough man to beat on his home patch, but my trainer Oliver Harrison and I both believe that we have the formula to take his title.

“I have never been afraid to travel to fight for World titles and this occasion will be no different; I expect lots of Brits to travel to Germany and it will be a fantastic atmosphere and a great fight for the fans in the Arena and watching on Sky Sports and Sat.1.”

Said promoter Kalle Sauerland: ‘’This is a great match up between two real warriors. Arthur has silenced his critics and proven time and time again why he is the man to beat at 168 lbs. His last performance against Stieglitz is testament to how much more he still has to give in the sport and we expect him to deliver another explosive performance on November 21, live on Sat.1 in Germany and Sky Sports in the UK.

‘’Martin Murray is a fighter who I have a lot of respect for. He has gone on the road, fighting the very best and is unlucky not to have already been crowned World Champion. This may well be his last chance and I expect him to give it his all and more than play his part in this fascinating encounter.’’

“I’m delighted to deliver this shot for Martin on a huge night of World Championship boxing on Sky Sports,’’ said Murray’s promoter Eddie Hearn. ‘’It’s a fight Martin and his team have been asking me for since he signed with us and the opportunity that I believe will see him realise his dream of becoming World Champion.’’

The WBO World Super Middleweight Championship fight between Arthur Abraham and Martin Murray will be broadcast live on Sat.1 in Germany and Sky Sports in the UK. Tickets are available online via tickethall.de and eventim.de.

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2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura

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The WBC World Super Featherweight title bout between Francisco Vargas and Takashi Miura came on one of the biggest boxing stages of 2015, as the bout served as the HBO pay-per-view’s co-main event on November 21st, in support of Miguel Cotto vs Saul Alvarez.

Miura entered the fight with a (29-2-2) record and he was making the fifth defense of his world title, while Vargas entered the fight with an undefeated mark of (22-0-1) in what was his first world title fight. Both men had a reputation for all-out fighting, with Miura especially earning high praise for his title defense in Mexico where he defeated Sergio Thompson in a fiercely contested battle.

The fight started out hotly contested, and the intensity never let up. Vargas seemed to win the first two rounds, but by the fourth round, Miura seemed to pull ahead, scoring a knock-down and fighting with a lot of confidence. After brawling the first four rounds, Miura appeared to settle into a more technical approach. Rounds 5 and 6 saw the pendulum swing back towards Vargas, as he withstood Miura’s rush to open the fifth round and the sixth round saw both men exchanging hard punches.

The big swinging continued, and though Vargas likely edged Miura in rounds 5 and 6, Vargas’ face was cut in at least two spots and Miura started to assert himself again in rounds 7 and 8. Miura was beginning to grow in confidence while it appeared that Vargas was beginning to slow down, and Miura appeared to hurt Vargas at the end of the 8th round.

Vargas turned the tide again at the start of the ninth round, scoring a knock down with an uppercut and a straight right hand that took Miura’s legs and sent him to the canvas. Purely on instinct, Miura got back up and continued to fight, but Vargas was landing frequently and with force. Referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the fight at the halfway point of round 9 as Miura was sustaining a barrage of punches.

Miura still had a minute and a half to survive if he was going to get out of the round, and it was clear that he was not going to stop fighting.

A back and forth battle of wills between two world championship level fighters, Takashi Miura versus “El Bandido” Vargas wins the 2015 Fight of the Year.

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Jan 9 in Germany – Feigenbutz and De Carolis To Settle Score

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This coming Saturday, January 9th, the stage is set at the Baden Arena in Offenburg, Germany for a re-match between Vincent Feigenbutz and Giovanni De Carolis. The highly anticipated re-match is set to air on SAT.1 in Germany, and Feigenbutz will once again be defending his GBU and interim WBA World titles at Super Middleweight.

The first meeting between the two was less than three months ago, on October 17th and that meeting saw Feigenbutz controversially edge De Carolis on the judge’s cards by scores of (115-113, 114-113 and 115-113). De Carolis scored a flash knock down in the opening round, and he appeared to outbox Feigenbutz in the early going, but the 20 year old German champion came on in the later rounds.

The first bout is described as one of the most crowd-pleasing bouts of the year in Germany, and De Carolis and many observers felt that the Italian had done enough to win.

De Carolis told German language website RAN.DE that he was more prepared for the re-match, and that due to the arrogance Feigenbutz displayed in the aftermath of the first fight, he was confident that he had won over some of the audience. Though De Carolis fell short of predicting victory, he promised a re-vamped strategy tailored to what he has learned about Feigenbutz, whom he termed immature and inexperienced.

The stage is set for Feigenbutz vs De Carolis 2, this Saturday January 9th in Offenburg, Germany. If you can get to the live event do it, if not you have SAT.1 in Germany airing the fights, and The Boxing Channel right back here for full results.

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2015 Knock Out of the Year – Saul Alvarez KO’s James Kirkland

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On May 9th of 2015, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez delivered a resonant knock-out of James Kirkland on HBO that wins the 2015 KO of the Year.

The knock-out itself came in the third round, after slightly more than two minutes of action. The end came when Alvarez delivered a single, big right hand that caught Kirkland on the jaw and left him flat on his back after spinning to the canvas.Alvarez was clearly the big star heading into the fight. The fight was telecast by HBO for free just one week after the controversial and disappointing Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight, and Alvarez was under pressure to deliver the type of finish that people were going to talk about. Kirkland was happy to oblige Alvarez, taking it right to Alvarez from the start. Kirkland’s aggression saw him appear to land blows that troubled the young Mexican in the early going. Alvarez played good defense, and he floored Kirkland in the first round, displaying his power and his technique in knocking down an aggressive opponent.

However, Kirkland kept coming at Alvarez and the fight entered the third round with both men working hard and the feeling that the fight would not go the distance. Kirkland continued to move forward, keeping “Canelo” against the ropes and scoring points with a barrage of punches while looking for an opening.

At around the two minute mark, Alvarez landed an uppercut that sent Kirkland to the canvas again. Kirkland got up, but it was clear that he did not have his legs under him. Kirkland was going to try to survive the round, but Alvarez had an opportunity to close out the fight. The question was would he take it?

Alvarez closed in on Kirkland, putting his opponent’s back to the ropes. Kirkland was hurt, but he was still dangerous, pawing with punches and loading up for one big shot.

But it was the big shot “Canelo” threw that ended the night. Kirkland never saw it coming, as he was loading up with a huge right hand of his own. The right Alvarez threw cracked Kirkland in the jaw, and his eyes went blank. His big right hand whizzed harmlessly over the head of a ducking Alvarez, providing the momentum for the spin that left Kirkland prone on the canvas.

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez went on to defeat Miguel Cotto in his second fight of 2015 and he is clearly one of boxing’s biggest stars heading into 2016. On May 9th Alvarez added another reel to his highlight film when he knocked out James Kirkland with the 2015 “Knock Out of the Year”.

Photo by naoki fukuda

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