Boxing


Erdei, Veit, Drews fighting for recognition and respect in Dortmund

07.05.04 - On Saturday three Universum boxers will be fighting for recognition and respect on an event featuring two world championship fights and one European title contest. The six principals of tomorrow’s fightcard at Westfalenhalle in Dortmund all past today’s weigh-in ceremony successfully.

Erdei vs. Garay: WBO Light Heavyweight Championship

WBO light heavyweight world champion Zsolt Erdei will be making the first defense of the title he won on January 17 from Julio Gonzalez, conqueror of Dariusz Michalczewski, with a spectacular 12-round unanimous decision. Erdei’s challenger is undefeated Argentine prospect Hugo Hernán Garay.

„He’s an awkward opponent“, Erdei reported. „He’s just 23, very quick and his skills are still a bit rough. This makes him very unpredictable.”

The first defense of the 29-year-old Erdei is already a mandatory defense because number three ranked Garay is the highest available opponent inside the rankings of the World Boxing Organization. (WBO #1 Michalczewski eyes a fight against WBA champion Fabrice Tiozzo this summer and WBO #2 Drews is already fighting on the same show on May 8 defending his European title.)

At the official weigh-in at Casino Hohensyburg in Dortmund “Firebird” Erdei, 19-0 (13), weighed 78,8 kg. His challenger Garay, 20-0 (10), put the scales to 79,3 kg. But in order to stay inside the limit Garay had to undress entirely, including his underwear.

Veit vs. Salem: WBO Super Middleweight Interims Championship

On the same card long-time super middleweight contender Mario Veit will launch his second attempt to become a world champion. The 30-year-old German, a professional since 1995, is fighting against Egyptian Kabary Salem for the WBO 168 lb. interims world title. Salem scored 23 wins, 12 by knockout, and lost two decisions to high caliber opposition.

Currently holding the WBO super middleweight world title is still Joe Calzaghe. But the Welshman is stepping up one weighclass and challenges Reggie Johnson for the IBF light heavyweight title on June 5. As soon as Calzaghe vacates his belt the winner of the Veit-Salem contest will be recognized as the full champion.

„In my second world title shot I want to display all of my boxing skills”, Veit, 43-1 (22), said, who in his previous attempt to become world champion lost to Joe Calzaghe by first round knockout in April 2000. “Never again I want to freeze and look like a fool, like I did against Calzaghe. When I’ll be winning on Saturday I want to look like a worthy world champion.”

Four years have past by since Veit’s single career loss, enough time for the German to score twelve consecutive victories, mostly against very solid and tough opposition.

Salem is nicknamed “Magic Egyptian” and lives in Brooklyn, USA. However, in September 1999, a fight featuring Salem against American Randie Carver wasn’t magic but rather tragic. After Salem knocked out his opponent in round twelve Carver died the same night in a hospital as a result of severe injuries to his head. Cynicaly this was the 13th professional fight of Salem.

Today, four and a half years later, the ill lucky Salem weighed in at 76 kg prior to his first world title fight. Mario Veit weighed 75,8 kg.

Drews vs. Shvets: European Light Heavyweight Championship

Third title fight of the evening is a European light heavyweight contest between defending champion “Spiderman” Stipe Drews and Ukrainian Konstantin Shvets, 17-2-2 (12). The undefeated Drews, 25-0 (12), won the EBU crown in February of 2003 with a one-sided 12-round decision against Italian Silvio Branco and made two title defenses since.

„This may be my last European title defense“, Drews said. “I want to grab for a world title now. I’m ranked highly in differend organizations and I want my next fight to be either a world title shot or a world title eliminator.”

The lanky Croatian Drews weighed in at 79,1 kg at Casino Hohensyburg. Shvets weighed 79 kg.

Live broadcasts in various countries

The event in Dortmund and the multinational title fight contenders are creating a high amount of media interest worldwide. The championship fights will be broadcast live in many countries on different continents.

Exclusive video interviews in German language with all three principals and a poto gallery of the official weigh-in can be found on www.boxing.de!

Fightcard:

WBO Light Heavyweight Championship
Zsolt Erdei (78,8 kg) vs. Hugo Hernán Garay (79,3 kg)

European Light Heavyweight Championship
Stipe Drews (79,1 kg) vs. Konstantin Shvets (79 kg)

WBO Super Middleweight Interims Title
Mario Veit (75,8 kg) vs. Kabary Salem (76 kg)

Middleweight
Bert Schenk (72,5 kg) vs. Azédine Djerrari (73,5 kg)

Heavyweight
Alexander Dimitrenko (110 kg) vs. Ramón Hayes (109,5 kg)

Jr. Middleweight
Sergej Dzinziruk (69,9 kg) vs. Sylvestre Marianini

Lightweight
Geir Inge Jorgensen (61,7 kg) vs. Csaba Ladanyl

Jr. Welterweight
Soren Engelbrecht (64 kg) vs. Claudiu Pop

Article posted on 07.05.2004



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