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The Long Drop

Sports, courts and afterthoughts
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How does Pacquiao’s one-punch KO of Hatton rate?

By David Isaacson | 2009-11-01 02:18:45
Rocky Marciano's demolition of Jersey Joe Walcott once ranked as boxing's best one-punch KO

Rocky Marciano's demolition of Jersey Joe Walcott once ranked as boxing's best one-punch KO

In South Africa this weekend we saw some great one-punch KOs. Mlungisi Dlamini knocked out Zolani Marali with a straight right, “Tommy Gun” Oosthuizen decked Tshepang Mohale with a left cross and Mikey Schultz clocked Samuel Mathebula with a right uppercut.

They were all amazing spectacles, but it got me thinking about one-punch knockouts. There have been some spectacular ones in boxing history, and Manny Pacquiao’s left-hook stoppage of Ricky Hatton must rank right up there.

I believe Rocky Marciano’s KO of Jersey Joe Walcott was once considered the best one-punch KO ever, but is it still rated so highly in modern-day boxing?

What do you think?

[poll id="7"]

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‘The Shark’ Dlamini downs Zolani Marali

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-31 22:08:52

ONE punch knockouts don’t come much better than this.

Mlungisi “The Shark” Dlamini stalked Zolani Marali for nearly four rounds at Emperors Palace last night before landing his first real punch of the fight – a straight right to the chin which uprooted Marali for the count.

It was a sensational conclusion to a bout that, up until then, had been a stinker, with Marali running like a thief. His evasive tactics resembled those of Osama Bin Laden, throwing the occasional punch from range and tying Dlamini up on the inside.

The first time that Marali tried to stand his ground and trade punches, Dlamini delivered his awesome missile straight down the groove into southpaw’s exposed chin, and he sunk to the canvas.

Marali attempted to get up, but he simply toppled forward on to his head and everybody knew it was game over. The referee’s continuation of the count was mere formality.

Dlamini’s record improved to 21 wins and a draw while Marali dropped to 20-4. This match-up was greeted with some controversy because just last month Marali lost his IBO junior-lightweight title on a stoppage. He was allowed to take this fight because he was deemed not to have taken bad punishment then.

Thomas “Tommy Gun” Oosthuizen scored the biggest win of his career to date when he knocked out SA super-middleweight champion Tshepang Mohale with his vaunted left hand.

Southpaw Oosthuizen frequently caught Mohale with his left to the chin, and they seemed to make no iimpact, but in the fourth round he landed one flush blow that felled his opponent for the count.

The SA title wasn’t on the line.

Oosthuizen’s record improved to 11 wins, with nine stoppages, while Mohale dropped to 6-3.

Earlier, Isaac Chilemba ground out a points win over world-ranked and previously unbeaten Doudou Ngumbu to claim the WBC’s stepping-stone International light-heavyweight title.

Apart from some adrenaline-filled flurries, this won’t go down as a classic boxing match, but Chilemba did enough to win the belt – and hopefully his No 10 WBC rating – from an awkward fighter whose only tactic, it seemed, was to try land a haymaker.

Chilemba, who also won the African title, improved his record to 14-1. France-based Ngumbu, originally from the DRC, dropped to 20-1.

Hekkie Budler made quick work of Motswaka Moselesele, the 2007 Baby Champ, knocking him out in the first round for his first stoppage victory in over a year.

Budler knocked him down with a straight right, and Moselesele was unable to recover thereafter, with Budler finishing him off quickly.

Flo Simba made a successful debut when he stopped Bernard Vance in the first round. Simba, just 20 and a chiselled 90kg, is being touted as South Africa’s next great heavyweight hope.

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Cassius Baloyi beats Roberto Arrieta in style

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-30 23:50:50

Kassius-Baloyi9

Cassius Baloyi produced the finest performance of his boxing career as he outpointed Roberto Arrieta of Argentina to win this IBF junior-lightweight title eliminator in Johannesburg on Friday night.

Baloyi dominated to win a lopsided decision, with all three judges scoring it 120-107.

The South African, a six-time world champion (including the marginal titles he’s won), showed more purpose and better movement than he ever has before – and he’s turning 35 next week!

Baloyi attributed his improved showing to his new trainer, Manny Fernandes. The boxer left Nick Durandt after his last bout, when he was stopped for the only time of his career by Malcolm Klassen.

I doubt whether Klassen will want to share the same ring with this new version of Baloyi.

On the same bill, Mikey Schultz knocked out Samuel Mathebula with a peach of a right uppercut in the third round.

Admittedly, the shorter Mathebula looked like he had made the super-middleweight division by spending a month in a donut factory.

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‘Raging Bull’ says boxing lacks stand-out boxers today

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-29 22:28:11
Jake LaMotta (right) was a brutal, tough fighter who during his prime never went down for a count

Jake LaMotta (right) was a brutal, tough fighter who during his prime never went down for a count

Jake La Motta, the world middleweight champion from 1949 to 1951 whose life story was immortalised in the movie Raging Bull, reckons there are no stand-out boxers today.

That may be a bitter pill for fans of fighters like Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto, but it’s an interesting view coming from a great who is now 88.

“Nobody stands out any more,” he told Reuters in an interview recently. “Maybe there’s a lull in the business. There hasn’t been anyone outstanding for a long time.”

Of course, there are many people – mostly old-timers – who would agree that boxing has slipped over the years.

I’m one of them, but equally, I’m looking forward to November 14.

Manny Pacquiao v Bruce Lee on the punch bag?

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-29 21:10:04
Manny Pacquiao v Bruce Lee? Talk to the hand

Manny Pacquiao v Bruce Lee? Talk to the hand

The comparison between Manny Pacquiao and Bruce Lee has sparked much debate.

One reader sent in urls for two YouTube clips showing both men working out on punch bags.

They’re interesting to watch, although I’m not convinced it’s fair to compare the two men based on this footage – Pacquiao’s balance is better in my opinion, but I have an eye for boxing, not martial arts.

Check them out for yourself and then vote in the poll below!

Read More…

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Sex for tickets? Now that’s what I call a real fan!

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-29 14:43:54
The feverish Mrs Finkelstein. Will she be wanting tickets for the 2010 Soccer World Cup in South Africa?

The feverish Mrs Finkelstein. Will she be wanting tickets for the 2010 Soccer World Cup in South Africa?

A desperate Philadelphia Phillies fan has been arrested in the US allegedly offering sex to obtain World Series baseball tickets for herself and her husband!

The lawyer of Susan Finkelstein, 43, said she was simply “overcome with Phillies fever”.

Hopefully Phillies fever is all she caught.

Finkelstein is denying the charge of promoting prostitution.

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George Foreman finally admits Muhammad Ali beat him fairly

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-29 11:07:32
Muhammad Ali watches George Foreman stumble on his way to the canvas

Muhammad Ali watches George Foreman stumble on his way to the canvas

A couple of years ago George Foreman wrote in his autobiography that, at the Rumble in the Jungle bout against Muhammad Ali, his water had been spiked.

But now, days before the 35th anniversary of that classic showdown in Zaire in 1974, Foreman admits he lost fair and square.

His admission is contained in a brilliant piece of journalism by Associated Press sports columnist Tim Dahlberg. Enjoy it!

Hey World Series fans, what about Philadelphia Vrystaaters?

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-29 08:13:13
Hey guys, this is what the world really looks like (notice how the US is just a part of it)

Hey guys, this is what the world really looks like (notice how the US is just a part of it)

The World Series has always fascinated us sports fans here in South Africa.

It’s not because we’re big baseball fanatics. Quite the opposite, in fact. Read More…

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IBF welterweight champ backs Manny Pacquiao

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-28 19:26:05
Isaac Hlatshwayo, left, in action against Phillip Ndou

Isaac Hlatshwayo, left, in action against Phillip Ndou

Isaac Hlatshwayo, who owns a quarter of the world welterweight crown, believes Manny Pacquiao will beat Miguel Cotto on November 14 – but the bout will go the distance.

“I believe Pacquiao has the edge,” says Hlatshwayo, holder of the IBF welterweight title. Cotto is defending the WBO belt, although the stipulated weight for this super-bout in Las Vegas is two pounds below the welter limit.

“Cotto, if you’ve seen his last few fights, is open to uppercuts and Pacquiao throws the left uppercut very well. It’ll be a tough fight, and I think it will go the distance,” added ‘The Angel’, who started his own professional career at lightweight.

Hlatshwayo’s stablemate, former IBF junior-lightweight champion Cassius Baloyi, is tipping Cotto to win. “He’s bigger and he’s stronger than Pacman.”

It’s not surprising that Baloyi is backing the bigger guy – he moved up to lightweight to challenge Hlatshwayo in 2005 and was badly beaten in a one-sided fight over 12 rounds, even getting dropped early on.

Baloyi is in action on Friday night in an eliminator against Argentina’s Roberto Arrieta.

Hlatshwayo, who turned down the chance for a unification bout against WBC champion Andre Berto, is scheduled to make a voluntary defence on December 11, although the opponent has yet to be finalised.

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Sachin Tendulkar’s Nagpur irony

By David Isaacson | 2009-10-28 18:41:47
Sachin Tendulkar in action

Sachin Tendulkar in action

Sachin Tendulkar played his seventh one-day international in Nagpur on Wednesday – and scored his lowest total ever on that ground!

Little Maestro managed just four runs, from a single boundary, before falling to Peter Siddle and failing for the first time to reach double figures at the Vidarbha stadium.

Read More…

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