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Fun boxing facts

Did you know?

James J Corbett and Peter Jackson fought to a draw over 61 rounds in 1891.

Pancho Villa, world flyweight champion, died of blood poisoning from an infected tooth after his fight with Jimmy McLarnin in 1925.

Tiger Flowers, world middleweight champion, died after an eye operation made necessary by ring injuries, on 16 November 1927, in New York City.

Battling Siki, world light-heavyweight champion, was shot to death in a brawl in New York in 1925.

Elijah Mokone, from Evaton near Vereeniging, who won the South African featherweight and lightweight titles, is considered one of the best fighters produced in the South African ring. He won the lightweight title and defended it 11 times before losing it to Alby Tissong. However, he regained the title in a return fight.

Benny Nieuwenhuizen was a jockey before he took up boxing and went on to win the South African welterweight title.

Johnny Dundee (born Joseph Carrora) had a favourite trick of using the ropes as a springboard to give added impetus in attack. But when he fought Willie Jackson in 1920 he knocked himself out with the trick. He bounded off the ropes and ran into a right hook, which put him out. This was the only stoppage he suffered in a ring career of 22 years.

Peter Murrell, well-known referee, refused to officiate in the Willie Toweel vs Johnny van Rensburg fight, because the promoters, White City Sporting Club, would not issue a complimentary ticket for his wife.

Sam Langford fought the world heavyweight champion Jack Johnson. The champion won, but Johnson never wanted to give Langford a return fight. And that shows how good Langford was.

Mike McTigue world light-heavyweight champion, used to suffer from imaginary ailments before his fights. His hand was hurt or his leg was on fire. But the pains vanished the moment he stepped into the ring.

Luis Firpo, who knocked Jack Dempsey through the ropes in a challenge for the world heavyweight, had a passion for celluloid collars. They could be cleaned with a wet cloth.

In 1951 Jim Nuttall was fighting Jim Moran in Bath, England. In the second round Nuttall swallowed his mouthpiece and had to quit.

Among the famous ring excuses were - Jess Willard after the terrific battering he received from Jack Dempsey, alleged that Dempsey had plaster-covered bandages, while Jack Johnson said he had deliberately lost to Jess Willard because that was the only way he could re-enter America. Johnson was in exile and they fought in Havana, Cuba on 5 April 1915.

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