Tim Austin: I am now "The Comeback Kid"

14.07.05 - Back in April 2004, Ex-boxing champ "The Cincinnati Kid" Tim Austin was acquitted of two rape charges which carried a maximum sentence of twenty years in the state penitentiary. A Hamilton County (Ohio) jury deliberated just 40 minutes before finding him not guilty. "I just feel relief," a teary-eyed Austin said after the verdict. "It's been hard on us as a family, and I know it's been hard on (the accuser's) family."

"I was just waiting on all of this," Austin said of his legal woes. "I want to get my world title back."

Austin (25-1-1, 22 KOs), who defended the bantamweight title nine times from 1997-2003, is coming back after a 2˝-year layoff. Tim, idle since losing his title via eighth-round TKO to Rafael Marquez in February 2003, returns on Baton Rouge's promoter Dana Pitcher's "Fistic Carnival" card on Aug. 6 at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner, Louisiana.

Austin won the International Boxing Federation world title in July 1997, from Mbulelo Botile of South Africa on an eighth-round knockout. Botile broke Austin's jaw with a left hook in the first round, but Austin fought through the pain and knocked down Botile in the seventh round - then right-hooked him into la-la land in the eighth. Miraculously, Tim had fought on for 7 more rounds with a broken jaw against an undefeated champion and turned the tables to score a clean cut victory. Later, he would have to endure a twenty hour operation to repair the damage to his jaw. Austin showed serious heart that night.

With that win, Austin introduced himself to the boxing world as a champion to look out for. During his reign of nine title defenses of the IBF bantamweight title, "The Cincinnati Kid" became a regular on big pay-per-view cards, including those of Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Felix Trinidad and Julio Cesar Chavez. Pound for pound, the 118-pound Austin was rated one of the best fighters ever.

In his last professional outing (February 2003), things didn't go exactly as planned. In the main event, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Rafael Marquez scored an upset TKO victory over Austin in the eighth round. Tim, winning the fight, got caught with a big combination in the 8th round by the heavy-handed Rafael Marquez. Referee Vic Drakulich stepped in at 2:20 of the eighth and stopped the contest giving Marquez the victory as well as the I.B.F. Bantamweight belt.

“Every champion loses at one time or another, but the great ones come back,” Austin said. “I am not saying I am a great fighter. I just want the opportunity to prove to the world what I already believe. There is no use talking about it. I would rather show it in the ring. I am just looking for the chance. I want to fight the biggest names and the toughest guys. I have to make the public see what I see in myself. That is the only way I will create interest.”

Finally, with all legal issues behind him, Tim is ready to rebuild his professional boxing career. He is now at a serious crossroads. For this contest, Pitcher is weeding through 30 potential boxers to fight Austin in August.

Tickets for the event are priced $100 (Table Seats); $45 (Ringside); $35 (Gold Floor); $25 (Reserved); and $15 (General Admission). Tickets will go on sale this Friday, July 8, 2005 at all Ticketmaster locations and the Pontchartrain Center Box Office.

The doors to the Pontchartrain Center open at 6:30 p.m.; first fight begins at approximately 7:30 p.m. The Pontchartrain Center is located at 4545 Williams Blvd. Kenner, LA.

Article posted on 14.07.2005

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