Evander Holyfield visits the Midlands
Evander Holyfield came to the Midlands recently and The Harp newspaper was more than pleased to be asked to be part of the celebrations of both his life and boxing career.
Holyfield, the twice weight and 5 times World Boxing champion’s first port of call was to Bar Sports in Cannock City Centre.
Owned by former ABA boxing Heavyweight Scott Murray, Evander was the main guest at the dinner event and hundreds of fight fans were able to fulfill their boyhood dreams of meeting and talking to one of their boxing idols.
Yours truly was in the right place at the right time, as I was the first person he met, as he walked into the event and had time to for a quick chat before all the hype started!
Evander was born on the 19-10-1962 in Alabama and being the youngest of nine children of a single mom he said the only burden he had to carry was the name he hated.
Growing up with a healthy family attitude, Evander loved sports, He was entranced by all sports he watched, yet as we know, it was boxing that ultimately captured his heart.
He told the crowd he had a great Amateur record and loved every second of it. In 1984 at the Los Angeles Olympics, he mounted the winner’s podium to receive the Bronze medal and the same year, Holyfield turned pro and never looked back.
12 fights later he won the WBA Cruiser-weight Title when he beat Muhammad Qawi on points. The following year he beat Ricky Parker for the IBF belt.
In 1988 he became the Undisputed Cruiser-weight champion of the world.
When he stepped up to the heavyweight division later the same year he didn’t have it easy because he had to fight the likes of James Tillis, Pinklon Thomas, and Micheal Dokes.
1990 saw the shock of the year when he knocked out Buster Douglas in 3 rounds to become the IBF, WBC & WBA Heavyweight Champion of the world.
Douglas had only a short while earlier beat Mike Tyson with a knock out win.
Holyfields first loss was at the hands of Riddick Bowe in 1992; that was 29 fights in as a pro.
On the return, he beat Bowe then in the biggest fight in history against Mike Tyson. As we know the Mike Tyson fight seen him lose part of his ear in a mad move by Tyson.
During his career he also stepped into the ring with George Forman, Bert Cooper, Larry Holmes, Michael Moorer, Ray Mercer, Lennox Lewis, John Ruiz, Hasim Rahman who had a 1 win 1 loss with Lewis, Chris Byrd and James Toney.
When he retired in 2007 Evander Holyfield had been in with them all except the Kliticko brothers. In total he had 41 wins 27 by KO 8 losses with 2 draws.
The Real Deal was also seen at events at The Hilton Hotel NEC on September 20th and also booked in for shows at Pride Park in Derby, October 3rd and The Holiday Inn hotel in Birmingham town centre on October 2nd.