Abraham, Marquez meet again
Ulli Wegner has praised King Arthur Abraham´s shape ahead of Saturday´s IBF middleweight title fight against Raul Marquez. Five weeks later than originally planned the two fighters will finally come face-to-face in Bamberg after the champion was flattened by the flu on the day of the fight. “Arthur is in great shape,” Wegner lauded. “He has worked very hard and very disciplined. The postponement did not affect his form at all.” After needing a last-second work-out session to make weight the last time out, the champion is already very close to the limit now. “Making weight can be very hard but great athletes have to live like nuns. Arthur did just that,” Wegner added.
Article posted on 05.11.2008
Meanwhile, Arturo Marquez, Raul´s father and coach, believes Abraham ducked out of the first meeting. “He was not sick,” Marquez stated. “He underestimated Raul when seeing him in America. When he analysed the tapes more closely he saw how strong Raul really is and then he did not want to fight him anymore..”
King Arthur replied with an ironic smile: “Yes, I am so scared that I did not dare to fight him.” And then he added: “Everybody can say what he wants ahead of a fight. I will give my answer in the ring.”
Just like Abraham (27-0, 22 KOs), Marquez (41-3, 29 KOs) also claimed that the postponement did not affect him – much on the contrary. “I am in even better shape than five weeks ago,” the mandatory challenger stated. “The postponement was not a problem, even though I would have fought had I turned sick. We flew back to the US, made a one-week break and then returned to practice. Everything has gone very well. Neither the time difference nor the long flights have bothered me. I am in great shape.”
Wilfried Sauerland once again pointed out that it was impossible for Abraham to fight on October 4. “Of course we were all surprised and shocked when we heard the news,” the manager stated. “I have experienced something like that before when Graciano Rocchigiani fought Michael Nunn. But if the boxer is sick it does not make any sense for him to enter the ring. Now I am really looking forward to Saturday night. It will be a very interesting fight.”
Abraham-Marquez this Saturday on PPV live from Germany
BAMBERG, Germany (November 5, 2008) – Challenger Raul “El Diamente” Marquez vowed once again at today’s press conference in Germany to shock the boxing world when he fights unbeaten International Boxing Federation middleweight champion “King” Arthur Abraham on Saturday at Jako Arena in Bamberg, Germany.
Abraham-Marquez is promoted by Wilfried Sauerland, presented by Sauerland Event and its Managing Director, Christian Meyer, in association with Seminole Warriors Boxing. The broadcast is being distributed in the United States and Canada by Integrated Sports for live viewing in English and Spanish at 3 PM/ET – 12 PM/PT on both cable and satellite pay-per-view via iN Demand, TVN, DISH Network, Viewer’s Choice Canada, and Bell ExpressVue, for a suggested retail price of only $24.95. iN Demand will show a replay the following day (Sunday, Nov. 9) at 2 PM/ET. Al Bernstein and Nick Charles will call the action.
Abraham-Marquez, originally scheduled October 4, was postponed due to Abraham’s sudden illness on the day of the fight.
“I’m confident and feel better than I did the last time,” Marquez said. “I’m going to shock the boxing world on Saturday. His trainer (Ulli Wegner) said that they have a lot of respect for me and that Abraham was sick. They’re looking forward to a tough fight against a veteran with a lot of experience. As a fighter, I respect Abraham but, sick or not, I still would have gone along with the fight. We’re good sportsmen and after the fight we’ll be friends.”
Abraham (27-0, 22 KOs), rated No. 2 by The Ring and ESPN, captured the IBF middleweight title nearly three years ago by way of a fifth-round knockout of Kingsley Ikeke (23-1). Seven successful title defenses have followed against Miranda, Shannon Taylor, Kofi Jantuah, Sebastian Demers, Khoren Gevor, Wayne Elcock and Elvin Ayala.
The 37-year-old Marquez (41-3-1, 29 KOs), rated No. 2 (No. 1 unrated) by the IBF as well as No. 8 by The Ring and No. 9 by ESPN, earned his title shot against Abraham by defeating previously unbeaten No. 1 contender Giovanni Lorenzo (26-0) in their June 21st IBF title eliminator. Marquez, fighting out of Houston, was a 1992 U.S. Olympian who was the IBF junior middleweight title-holder in 1997.
The 10-round co-feature on the PPV show from Germany finds former NABO champion and “The Next Great Champ” reality television winner, Otis “Triple OG” Griffin (19-3-2, 7 KOs), of Sacramento, fighting Yugoslavian-born Enad Licina (14-1, 8 KOs), now living in Germany, for the vacant IBF Intercontinental cruiserweight belt.
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