20.10.07 - By Matthew Hurley: World Boxing Association middleweight champion Felix Sturm, 28-2-1 with 12 KOs retained his title with a twelve round draw against Randy Griffin, 24-1-3 with 12 KOs at the Gerry Weber Stadium in Germany.
The fight started off briskly and was fought at a close clip right up until the final bell. Griffin, the number one ranked contender by the World Boxing Association applied constant forward motion but Sturm’s tight defense blocked many of his shot. The fight continued at a brisk pace until Griffin appeared to get the upper hand in the sixth round, forcing the champion back into the ropes.
Griffin had a strong seventh round and then Sturm was able to force the bout back into the center of the ring and began boxing at a more measured distance. Griffin remained the busier fighter while Sturm was more economical with his punches.
Entering the 12th round the bout seemed to be in the balance. Griffin applied pressure but Sturm closed the round with a late flurry.
A very close fight was once again somewhat marred by one of the judge’s scorecards. One judge had the bout even at 114-114, another had it 115-114 for Sturm while the third judge had Griffin ahead by a wide 117-111 score.
“I hope there is a rematch,” Sturm said after the official scores were announced. “Randy deserved it and I need a rematch to prove something to myself.”
“It was a close decision,” Griffin said. “I was disappointed with the decision. I thought I won.”
Willy Blain W10 DQ Stephane Benito
Taras Bidenko W12 UD George Arias
Lukas Wilaschek W10 MD Peter Mashamaite
Vitali Tajbert W8 UD Peter Petrov
Sebastian Zbik KO1 William Ruiz
Sebastian Kober KO1 Ioan Mihai
Dieter Roth KO 2 Zoltan Peto