Vitali Klitschko-Samuel Peter - Who Wins?

Samuel Peterby James Slater: With the long awaited clash between reigning WBC heavyweight champion Samuel Peter and "Champion Emeritus" Vitali Klitschko looking as though it will finally take place in Germany this coming October, it's time to take a look at the bout and see who will win. On paper a tough fight to pick - due largely to the inactivity Klitschko has undergone - this heavyweight rumble could go either way.

Both men can punch seriously hard, and as such there is a big chance a KO - very possibly a quite spectacular one - will bring about an ending to the bout. But in whose favour? Sure, the fight is not too far from a pick 'em in 2008 - but if it were not for "Dr. Iron Fist's" current age and the fact he has been both injury prone and about as active as a volcano recently, this would not be the case. Vitali is (or was) a far superior fighter to the hard-hitting, but otherwise limited, Sam Peter. Bigger, taller, and possessing a far better left jab than the one "The Nigerian Nightmare" has in his arsenal, the man who turns 37 later this month would have been a huge favourite to win were the bout taking place a few years ago.

But today, with only one fight under his belt in almost four years, Vitali has one big question mark next to him when it comes to what he has to offer the heavyweight division. Bound to be affected, at least somewhat, by ring-rust when he gets in there with the decade younger man, Klitschko may be vulnerable in the early rounds. If Peter jumps right on him before he has a chance to get into his groove, Vitali could well be in trouble. Peter is no master boxer, but he is powerful and very dangerous - especially in the first few rounds of a fight. There was a time when the 27-year-old also looked to have a solid chin.

In his fight with Vitali's younger brother, Wladimir, which he lost on points for his sole career loss, Peter took a thunderous left hook in the twelfth and final round. Peter didn't go anywhere, even though the big punch landed flush and wobbled him, and it seemed Sam had a great chin. This opinion was slightly altered in Peter's last-but-one fight, however. In winning the interim version of the WBC belt he now holds, Peter was decked three times by Jameel McCline. Going down this many times against the not too hard-punching McCline led some to believe the praise "The Nigerian nightmare's" chin was given was perhaps undeserved. Will Vitali Klitschko be able to send Peter to the floor the way "Big Time" did?

Perhaps so, and perhaps when he goes down after being hit by "Dr Iron Fist's," best shot Sam will be in no position to get back up. At his best, Vitali definitely beats Peter, but is Vitali still anywhere near his best? We simply do not know if the 37-year-old, who was last seen destroying a game Danny Williams, will be anywhere near the fine fighter he once was come October.

Barring a quick win by Peter - and as crazy as it may seem to some, this result is at least possible - I go for Klitschko to either stop Sam late or repeat his younger brother's points win. Minus the knockdowns Wladimir suffered, that is.

Article posted on 11.07.2008

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