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Boxing: Boxing: Klitschko will heal as he pursues Lewis rematch

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posted on Jun, 25 2003 @ 08:44 PM
Associated Press - June 24, 2003

LAS VEGAS (AP) - The deep cuts on Vitali Klitschko's face are stitched up and just beginning to heal. He won't be able to fight again until late this year, at the earliest.

That didn't stop Klitschko from beginning another fight Tuesday - to get Lennox Lewis back in the ring for a rematch both he and a lot of boxing fans believe he deserves.

``I want a rematch and the rematch would be much bigger (for Lewis) than Roy Jones,'' Klitschko said. ``I hope the next fight will be against Lewis.''

Klitschko, who may have won a lot more than he lost in Saturday night's fight, repeated his belief that the fight shouldn't have been stopped at the end of the sixth round because of a bad cut over his left eye.

The cut was an inch deep, all the way to the bone, and took 60 stitches to close. But Klitschko said the ring doctor's decision took away from what might have been a spectacular ending to the heavyweight title fight.

``I could see well. That's why I'm disappointed in the decision,'' he said during a conference call Tuesday. ``I know it's my fight - and I win the fight. This decision gives a big present to Lennox Lewis.''

Klitschko was ahead on all three scorecards in a brutal if somewhat ungainly brawl at the Staples Center in Los Angeles when the fight was stopped because of the cut.

His lawyer, Ron DiNicola, said he is considering protesting the decision to the California Athletic Commission and asking the World Boxing Council to order a rematch.

Neither of those avenues are likely to get him a second fight with Lewis, who welcomed a rematch just after the fight but has another possibly lucrative fight with Jones that could get in the way.

Complicating the chances for a second fight is that Klitschko needs time to heal before beginning training again.

``Six months would be a good time,'' said Dr. Pearlman Hicks, who sewed the cuts up. ``We want to make sure it's perfectly healed so he can get back in the ring and not worry about the problem.''

Hicks said the cut over the fighter's eye took several layers of stitches to close. Another cut on his lip was cut to the muscle.

Though Klitschko lost, he won over a lot of boxing fans and legitimized his claim to be a top heavyweight contender. He put himself in the mix among a handful of top heavyweights, with the possibilities of big fights other than Lewis.

``I don't want to fight everyone. I want to fight for a world championship,'' Klitschko said. ``It is my dream to fight world champions.''

Klitschko is from Ukraine, but he and his brother, Wladimir, both speak German and spent the last six years fighting and building up a big fan base in Germany.

The fight started at around 4:30 a.m. in Germany because of the time difference, but a whopping 4.6 million either stayed up or crawled out of bed to watch. The numbers were similar to what a popular prime time show in the country draws.

Some said it was the first time in 20 years it was worth sitting up all night to watch boxing - since Muhammad Ali was fighting.

``We're staying awake again. The drama in Los Angeles wouldn't let us sleep, just like we once couldn't with the 'Thrilla in Manila' and the ``Rumble in the Jungle,'' wrote the Berliner Morgenpost, a daily.


posted on Jun, 27 2003 @ 03:23 PM
Lennox Lewis will accept a rematch with Vitali Klitschko "if the money is right".

The 37-year-old beat Klitschko on a technical knockout but the manner of the victory has led to calls for the two fighters to meet again.

The Ukrainian was eliminated in the sixth round after Lewis inflicted a nasty gash on his left eye but he was ahead on points at the time and more than demonstrated his threat to the Londoner.

The duo are not a big draw in the all-important American pay-per-view market where a match-up with former middleweight champion Roy Jones Jr has greater appeal.

However, Lewis did indicate that another meeting with Klitschko could happen.

"If the money is right, show me the money," he said.

"I am happy to give him a rematch so I can bust up the other side of his face.

posted on Jun, 27 2003 @ 10:52 PM
I think Lewis would win a rematch since he wil probably be much better prepared for it.


posted on Jun, 28 2003 @ 04:41 AM
Lennox Lewis' trainer Emanuel Steward thinks the WBC heavyweight champion will bring down the curtain on his career with a rematch against Vitali Klitschko.

Lewis was far from convincing in retaining his title in Los Angeles against the Ukrainian, who was stopped after six rounds because of a cut above his eye.

And Steward, while admitting he is not sure if 37-year-old Lewis will fight again, has a hunch that he will decide to put his title on the line once more against Klitschko.

Lewis was the heaviest he has ever been during his 14-year career - at 18st 4lb - for the Klitschko fight in the Staples Center and it showed as he struggled against his younger opponent.

But Steward insisted: "Lennox will not want to go out like that.

"It was not a polished victory. He did get hurt and I don't know yet if he is going to fight again, but I think he will fight Vitali again and that will be his final fight. But whatever his decision is it will be fine with me."

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