Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) - March 11, 2004
Beijing (dpa) - Former world heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson may fight in China this year if local promoters can raise 3 million dollars, one
of the promoters said on Thursday.
"Both sides are discussing it," Zhang Heng, director of the Beijing Competition Administration Centre, said of the possible fight.
"If a deal is made, if the 3 million dollars can be found, he (Tyson) will come in June," Zhang told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.
The June visit would be a promotional tour ahead of a fight planned for October, he said.
Chinese media said the Beijing centre reached a preliminary agreement with Tyson's agents on Wednesday.
The reports said the promoters planned to pit the financially troubled Tyson against a "well-known Russia heavyweight", but Zhang denied that any
opponent was identified.
The official People's Daily said U.S. and Chinese promoters planned to announce the fight at a press conference in Las Vegas next month, if they can
finalize their agreement.
In 2001, veteran U.S. boxing promoter Don King tried to arrange a heavyweight bout in Beijing between four-time champion Evander Holyfield and fellow
American John Ruiz.
The fight was cancelled, reportedly because Chinese promoters failed to sell enough television advertising and Asian broadcasting rights.
Tyson, 37, last fought in February 2003, beating Clifford Etienne in 49 seconds.