Boxing, Uncategorized

Boxing Greats that fought past their prime Part 2

Érik Morales (52-9)

Érik Morales is a Mexican former professional boxer who was the first Mexican-born boxer in history to win world titles in four weight classes. He won titles in the super bantamweight, featherweight, super featherweight and bantamweight divisions. He was a warrior who beat 15 world champions throughout his career. After losing his second fight to Marco Antonio Barrera, he lost 7 of his last 12 fights. A true warrior.

Erik Morales
Mexican warrior Érik Morales. Photo By: Getty Images

Julio César Chávez (107-6-2)

Julio Cesar Chavez is considered by many to be the greatest Mexican boxer of all time and one of the all time great boxers. He fought from 1998 to 2005. He was 89-0-1 when he suffered his first defeat although the cracks began to appear against Meldrick Taylor and Pernell Whitaker. He lost his light welterweight title to Oscar De La Hoya in 1996 and he was never able to reclaim a major belt afterwards.

Julio Cesar Chavez prepares for battle. Photo by: Richard Mackson/Sports Illustrated/Getty Images

Sugar Ray Leonard (36-3-1)

Leonard retired multiple times during his stellar career. He initially retired after suffering from a detached retina but returned to beat Marvin Hagler and become welterweight champion. He retired after that fight but came back to defeat Danny Lalonde while drawing with Thomas Hearns and beating Roberto Duran. He lost his last two fights and suffered a TKO to Hector Camacho as he should have retired before that.

Sugar Ray Robinson (173-19-6)

Sugar Ray Robinson competed from 1940 to 1965 and is widely considered the greatest pound for pound fighter of all time. He went 91 fights unbeaten in the middle of his career, the third longest in history while he won the middleweight title 5 times, becoming the only person to ever do so. He was unable to win a wold title in his last five years as a professional, losing five of his last 11 fights and he wasn’t the same fighter after coming back from retirement.

Mike Tyson (50-6)

Mike Tyson is one of the most recognisable boxers on the planet. The aptly nicknamed “Baddest Man on the Planet” became heavyweight champion of the world at aged 20. The death of trainer Cus D’Amato impacted on Tyson as he suffered a shock loss to buster Douglas in 1990. He was sent to prison in 1992 and although he returned to the ring, he lost twice to Evander Holyfield, suffering a DQ in the second fight while he lost three of his last four fights as he became slow and weary.

Mike Tyson knocked out Trevor Berbick to become the youngest ever heavyweight world champion at the age of 20. Photo: AFP/Getty Images

I hope you enjoyed this blog post. I completed part one a month earlier. Keep an eye out for more boxing content and for other sports also. Thanks for reading.

 

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Uncategorized

Wimbledon Women’ Final: Will it be number 8 for Serena or can Kerber etch her name in Wimbledon history?

The 2018 Wimbledon Final will be contested between number 11 seed Angelique Kerber and number 25 seed Serena Williams. This match is a repeat of the 2016 final which Williams won in two tight sets. Here I preview what promises to be a fascinating encounter.

Wimbledon Women's Trophy
The Venus Rosewater Dish will be presented to the winner but who will hat be? Photo By: Gary M Prior/Allsport

Kerber’s Route to the Final

R1. v Vera Zvonareva 7-5 6-3

R2. v Claire Liu 3-6 6-2 6-4

R.3 v Naomi Osaka 6-2 6-4

R.4 v Belinda Bencic 6-3 7-6(5)

QF v Daria Kasatkina 6-3 7-5

SF v Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-3

Angelique Kerber has dropped just one set on her way to the final. Her most impressive performance was in the semi-final against the power of Ostapenko. She will come up against a similar type player in Serena Williams. Kerber’s fairly routine progress means she shouldn’t be affected by fatigue and she will need all her energy if she is to triumph here.

Angelique Kerber
Will Kerber be elebrating on Saturday? Photo By: Reuters

Williams’ Route to the Final

R1. v Arantxa Rus 7-5 6-3

R2. v Viktoriya Tomova 6-1 6-4

R3. v Kristina Mladenovic 7-5 7-6(2)

R.4 v Evgeniya Rodina 6-2 6-2

QF v Camila Giorgi 3-6 6-3 6-4

SF v Julia Goerges 6-2 6-4

Serena has peaked perfectly in this tournament. Her response to losing her first set in the quarter final showed what a champion she is. She dug in and found a way to win. Her semi-final performance was excellent. Goerges played a great match but Serena’s power and angles were too much. She will need a big performance to beat a familiar foe on Saturday.

Serena Williams final
Will Serena be roaring with delight on Saturday? Photo By: UPI

My Thoughts

Serena understandably enters the match as the favourite considering her past victories here. She is going for her eighth title and looking to equal Margaret Court’s Open era  record of 24 Grand Slams. She won 87% of points behind her first serve in the semi-final and her serve was what won her the title against Kerber in 2016. She will face a different type of pressure as she has not played much tennis since the birth of her daughter. Can she handle it?

Kerber has made steady progress throughout the tournament on what I consider to be her best surface. Her serve has been vital to her progress. She made 77% of first serves in her semi-final and will need to make a similar number in the final. The German’s defence has been wondeful throughout the Champioships and she has been excellent in nullifying the big shots of Osaka and Ostapenko.

It would be special to see Serena win her 24th Slam at the All England Club and create history. It would be equally sweet to see Angelique win her first Wimbledon after her nightmare 2017. I’m giving the nod to Serena in two tight sets or over 3 sets. It promises to be a great game of tennis.