Aussie wrap-up: Soliman calls it a day
Photo: Michael Dodge/Getty Images
Former middleweight world champion Sam Soliman bowed out of boxing with a win. Anthony Cocks rounds up all the latest news from Down Under...
Former IBF middleweight champion Sam ‘King’ Soliman 46-14-1 (19) 2NC went out a winner with a 12-round unanimous decision win over Mark Lucas 9-2 (3) in the final fight of his career at the Melbourne Pavilion in Flemington, Victoria on April 12.
The 45-year-old Melburnian pitched a near-shutout, winning by scores of 120-108, 118-110 and 118-110.
“Mark Lucas is a former OPBF champion and was a very tough opponent but no one was going to defeat me tonight in what is my final bout,” Soliman told Fightnews.com.
“Training was perfect for me and what I was doing in the gym I was able to do against Lucas. The referee did a great job and let the both of us fight.
“The promoter Brian Amatruda said if I wasn’t 46 years of age and retiring he would have me boxing again in three weeks. He thought it was a very good performance.”
The only boxer Soliman would return to the ring for would be Anthony Mundine, who he has already boxed a trilogy against.
“The only fighter I would come out of retirement for would be Anthony Mundine who I boxed three times at super middleweight. I’m confident I would beat him at middleweight,” Soliman continued.
Soliman claimed the IBF 160lbs title from Felix Sturm in Krefeld, Germany by wide unanimous decision as a 40-year-old in May 2014. He lost the title five months late to former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain Taylor in Biloxi, Mississippi.
Other big names he faced during his 22-year professional career include Winky Wright, Sakio Bika, Howard Eastman, Raymond Joval and Sergiy Derevyanchenko.
Soliman will now focus his energies on training fighters at his dedicated boxing gym in South Melbourne.
“I will be involved in boxing now as a trainer. I have four gun professional boxers and four gun amateurs at my gym – Sam’s Stable,” he said.
On the undercard Michael Zerafa 26-3 (15) bounced back from his 12-round loss to Kell Brook in December with a second-round knockout of veteran Les Sherrington 37-14 (21).
The fight was scheduled for eight rounds and fought at a catchweight, with Zerafa coming in at 166lbs to Sherrington’s 172lbs.
Heavyweight Kris Terzievski 7-0-1 (6) successfully retained his Victorian state title with a second-round TKO of Hayden Wright 2-9 (2) in their eight-round contest.
Luke Jackson 18-1 (8) scored an early knockout of Thai journeyman Boonsom Phothong 17-25-2 (11) in a stay-busy fight at super featherweight at the Hurstville Entertainment Centre in Sydney, NSW on April 26.
Jackson, who was stopped in nine rounds by Carl Frampton at Windsor Park in Belfast last August, secured the stoppage at 0:21 of the third round of the eight-round contest.
The card also featured the return of former IBF featherweight champion Billy ‘The Kid’ Dib 44-5 (25) who scored an easy first-round knockout of Surachet Tongmala 7-12 (4) of Thailand in their eight-round lightweight bout. The time was 2:25.
The 33-year-old Dib had previously announced his retirement from the ring after dropping a wide 12-round decision loss to Tevin Farmer for the vacant IBF super featherweight title in Sydney last August.
Also on the card heavyweight Bowie Tupou 28-6 (20) knocked out Randall Rayment 9-5 (3) at 0:28 of the third-round of their ten-round bout and super featherweight Lauryn Eagle 21-4-1 (12) outpointed Mayra Alejandra Gomez 18-9 (4) over ten by scores of 98-92, 97-93 and 98-92.
WBO number eight and WBA number 12 super middleweight Zac ‘Dynamo’ Dunn 28-1 (23) made light work of previously undefeated German Patrick Rokohl 16-1 (12), stopping him in the second round of their ten-round bout at the Melbourne Pavilion in Flemington, Victoria on April 5.
The heavy-handed Dunn, 28, had Rokohl on the canvas twice. After the second knockdown Rokohl returned to his corner and refused to continue. Official time was 2:34.
In other action Australian middleweight champion Tej Pratap Singh 15-4-2 (8) 1NC comprehensively outboxed Viktor Agateljan 7-1 (4) to retain his title by ten-round decision. All three judges had the Melbourne-based Indian southpaw winning by scores of 99-91.
Mark Schleibs 11-0 (7) knocked out Worawatchai Boonjan 14-20-1 (13) of Thailand in the third round of their eight-round bout. Schleibs is the current Australian bantamweight champion.
Former Australian cruiserweight champion Jayden Joseph 8-2-1 (2) stopped Isaac Slade 2-4-2 (2) in the third frame of a six-rounder after Slade complained of back pain.
IBF number 12 junior middleweight Dwight ‘The Fighting Cowboy’ Ritchie 19-1 (2) easily outpointed South Korean Jung Hoon Yang 10-10 (2) over eight rounds at the Whitehorse Club in East Burwood, Victoria on April 27.
At featherweight Jai Alexander 10-0 (6) had a tougher than expected out against Fijian Krishnil Mudaliar 8-4 (5), eventually prevailing by split decision over eight.
Former amateur star Jason Whateley improved his record to 4-0 (3) with a first-round knockout of Filimoni Naliva Jr 5-1 (3) of Fiji in their scheduled eight -ound contest at cruiserweight.
In an entertaining brawl junior welterweight Terry Tzouramanis 22-4-3 (3) turned back the challenge of rugged southpaw Gaige Ireland 6-3-2 (3) outpointing him over ten rounds at the Malvern Town Hall in Malvern, Victoria on April 6. Scores were 97-93, 96-94 and 96-94.
Middleweight Emmanuel Carlos 10-1 (7) won a ten-round unanimous decision over Wade Ryan 16-8 (5) by scores of 97-93, 97-93 and 96-94.
At welterweight Adam Kaoullas 7-1 (2) successfully defended his Victorian state title with an eight-round points win over Toni Camin 16-6-2 (10) by scores of 77-75, 77-76 and 78-74. Next up for Kaoullas is a shot at Jack Brubaker on the undercard of the Australian title fight between champion Joel Camilleri and challenger Tim Tszyu in Sydney on May 15.
Light heavyweight Matt Sheehan 5-1 (2) pitched an eight-round shutout of the always durable Steven Ma 7-13-1 (2).
Super featherweight TC Priestly 3-3 (3) surprised Ben Dencio 7-2 (4) to claim the vacant Australian 130lbs title by TKO7 in their scheduled ten-round bout at the Hellenic Club in Woden, ACT on April 5.
Dencio started strongly but Priestly came on in the middle rounds, displaying his superior firepower with a brutal body attack and overhand right. When referee Pat O’Connor intervened to prevent Dencio from suffering further punishment at 2:55 of round number seven, Priestly was trailing 56-58 on two cards and was even 57-57 on the third.
Also in action Bianca Elmir 3-0 (3) picked up the vacant Australian featherweight title with a second-round stoppage of debutant Reanne Ware 0-1 in their eight round bout. Time of the stoppage was 1:52.