Alexander Povetkin Hangs On To “Regular” WBA Heavyweight Belt With Gruelling Majority Decision Over A Rough, Tough Marco Huck

By James Slater - Last night in Germany, Russia’s Alexander Povetkin and Serbian-born Marco Huck of Germany put on a great brawl of an action fight. The final decision after 12 rough, at times crude, but never less than entertaining rounds, saw older man Povetkin hang on to his “regular” WBA heavyweight belt and unbeaten record.

The winner by way of majority verdict - scores of 114-114, 116-112 and 116-113 - the 32-year-old Russian retained his belt for the second time and improved to 24-0(16). 27-year-old Huck, the former WBO 200-pound king, falls to 34-2(25) but he can certainly come again.

After a slow start in the opening round, during which the more polished Povetkin got his combos going and Huck at times threw a nice stiff left jab, the fight really broke into an all-action affair in the 4th. Povetkin really stepped up the pace in the 3rd, but in the 4th it was Huck, amazingly as strong as the champ despite giving away twenty-pounds in weight, who hurt his man. As would prove to be a dangerous if somewhat crude weapon all night long, Huck’s right hand chopped down on Povetkin’s head and had him in trouble.

Huck was too wild with his attacks in the 4th, but his sheer work-rate won him the round. By the 5th, Povetkin was blowing hard - had he trained as hard as he could have for this fight? A snapping left jab from Huck forced Povetkin’s head back here in the 5th.

The 7th-round was sensational, and it looked for a time as though Huck could really score a shocker and stop Povetkin. A right hand had Povetkin all over the place, with him slamming into the corner post at one point. His legs disorganised, the older man dug deep and managed to hold on. But Povetkin really did look shattered at this stage.

The referee was on Huck’s case for his chopping right hands, some of which landed on the back of Povetkin’s head - yet Povetkin was bending over at the waist quite a lot and this may have affected where Huck’s right hands landed. In any case, the war was now on big style and the large crowd was witnessing a classic brawl.

By the later rounds, Huck was bleeding from the mouth, and cut around both eyes. Povetkin was doing more work, however - crucially as it turned out. But would the Russian’s gas tank hold out? Again in the 11th a Huck right hand had Povetkin all over the place. Povetkin fired back but he looked almost totally exhausted. It’s fair to say, that had he been in with a natural heavyweight puncher tonight, Povetkin would have been in deep trouble. Huck, though, couldn’t find the finishing punch.

He almost did in the 12th and final round of a great fight though!

Both men knew it was close and in the last three minutes, with Huck now looking badly busted up, the two went for it with whatever strength they had left. Povetkin, his hands still fast, threw out more combinations, but then Huck scored with the punch of the night. A massive right hand that landed bang on Povetkin’s chin had the look of a fight-ender (had it been a Klitschko who landed the shot, Povetkin’s night would have been over) - but Povetkin took a visible suck of air and managed to fight back. Huck, really going for it, continued to chuck right hands until the final bell rang.

At times last night the two rivals hit on the break, at times they threw punches after the bell. This only made the slugfest all the more entertaining! Both guys felt they’d won (for what it’s worth I had the fight a draw) and a return would be greatly welcomed. Huck, expected by some fans to be blown away in quite short order, proved he can hang with a genuine heavyweight. It will be very interesting to see what each guy does next.

But for now, we fans can both thank and congratulate Povetkin and Huck for giving us all a great, old-fashioned heavyweight battle. There were no losers last night.

Article posted on 26.02.2012

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