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Presidents Column  |  February 2018
POSTED ON FEBRUARY 22, 2018.
BY: WBF PRESIDENT HOWARD GOLDBERG.
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COLUMN   Photo: World Boxing Federation (WBF) President Howard Goldberg.
 
 

The Heavyweight division has virtually always captured the imagination of the boxing fraternity. Ali, Frazier, Foreman, Holmes and more excited fans around the world with their skill, power, finesse, strength and of course in Aliís case the gift of the gab.

Ali could sell ice in the South Pole such was his personality and marketability. Ali remains my number one heavyweight of all time!

Even in my home country of South Africa we had our own era of exciting heavyweights, perhaps not in the class of the above mentioned fighters but pretty damn close. Gerrie Coetzee, Kallie Knoetze, Jimmy Abbot, Mike Schutte, Pierre Coetzer, Johnny Du Plooy and of course the late Corrie Sanders.

Iím sure the Klitschko brothers remember Corrie well. So I digress slightly, but going back to the current crop of heavyweights today, I would like to focus on three unbeaten champions - Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder and Joseph Parker.

Joshua - a well-spoken and humble young man. Big, strong and immense power. He showed great courage when down and almost out against Klitschko, he dug deep and turned the fight into an incredible KO victory.

I met Anthony in London when he knocked out Brazilian Raphael Zumbano and found Anthony to be a likable and genuine guy, always willing to talk to his fans. Joseph Parker also is a genuine, down to earth and equally likeable fighter.

I met Joseph in New Zealand when I accompanied my good friend Francois "The White Buffalo" Botha when he journeyed out there to fight the then up-and-coming Parker. Fast hands, good movement, slick skills and perhaps not a one-punch knockout expert, but certainly power in both hands.

Then we come to Deontay Wilder, whom I have never met personally. From what Iíve seen, Deontay is somewhat of a moody fighter, who on his day is brilliant and unstoppable and who can take out anyone.

There are other times when Wilder, while looking good, doesnít look great. I guess in boxing one needs someone to bring out the best of you as a fighter and perhaps thatís what Deontay needs.

So here are my own personal predictions: Joshua vs. Parker - Joshua on points. Parker vs. Wilder - Wilder wins by KO in the late rounds. Joshua vs. Wilder - a war with Joshua winning by KO around the middle rounds.

The beauty of boxing is that when we talk the sport we love, we can always agree to disagree.

Until next time, keep boxing.

Howard Goldberg

PRESIDENT: World Boxing Federation

 

 
 
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