Ulrich targets world title shot after defeating Barney
26.03.05 – European light heavyweight champion Thomas Ulrich continues his walk towards a world title shot after successfully defending his title with a close but unanimous decision against Matthew Barney today at Erdgas Arena of Riesa, Germany. The official scores were 116:112 and twice 115:114..
Article posted on 26.03.2005
The 29-year-old Berliner was facing a strong challenge from the one year older Englishman Barney (174˝ lb.) in his first defense of the European crown that he’s holding for the second time since knocking out Silvio Branco in round 11 in July 2004. He previously won the EBU belt in October 2002 by knocking out Yawe Davis in round 2 but vacated the title later on.
The man from Southampton lived up to his prediction that he would display the fight of his life when he confused Ulrich (174˝ lb.) with his unorthodox style, his excellent footwork and visibly interrupted the German’s game plan. But it still wasn’t enough to defeat the more skilful and more powerful Ulrich who was chasing Barney across the ring in the late rounds when the stamina of the Englishman deteriorated.
It was already the third time that the contest between Ulrich and Barney had been scheduled by Universum Box-Promotion. Last year the German called off twice shortly before their scheduled fight as he picked up the flue in the week preceeding the event. That’s why everybody involved in the event of Riesa was highly reliefed that nothing happened to interfere with the third run and that Ulrich didn’t drop out this time.
Instead Ulrich improved his record to 28-1 with 19 knockouts and backed up his high positions in the rankings of all world boxing bodies (WBC #1, WBA #3, IBF #4, WBO #1) whereas Barney dropped to 26-5-1 (6).
By remaining victorious Ulrich secured himself a sure title shot at the World Boxing Council as well as possible alternative options at other world boxing bodies. The WBC belt has been vacated by Antonio Tarver last year. On May 21 Australian Paul Briggs and Polish Tomasz Adamek will contest for the vacant crown with the WBC #2 ranked Ulrich facing the winner.
Besides World Boxing Association champion Fabrice Tiozzo, who conquered Dariusz Michalczewski in February, expressed interest to defend his title against the WBA #3 ranked Ulrlich, a stable mate of the former WBO champ.
In the co-main event in Riesa Uzbekian heavyweight contender Ruslan Chagaev defeated Sherman “Tank” Williams from the Bahamas by unanimous decision over eight rounds. By lasting the distance Williams (251 lb.) ended the knockout streak of Chagaev (227 lb.) who had stopped his last seven opponents.
Chagaev improved to 16-0-1 with 13 knockouts. Williams dropped to 25-10-1 with 15 knockouts.
European Light Heavyweight Championship:
Thomas Ulrich W12 Matthew Barney
(116:112, 115:114, 115:114)
Koren Gevor TKO4 (2:33) Francesco Pernice
Ruslan Chagaev W8 Sherman Williams
(78:74, 80:72, 79:73)
Sebastian Zbik W6 Arash Warasy
(60:54, 60:54, 60:54)
Karoly Balzsay TKO2 Danny De Beul
Bagrat Ohanyan TKO2 Ivan Aparaceido Rosa
Alex Mazikin TKO2 Roger Foe
Rudolf Kraj TKO1 Tomas Mrazek
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March 29, 2005
18:00 German time
12:00 US ET
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