By Seamus Raftery: While I was watching a short documentary recently on the career of heavyweight great Smokin’ Joe Frazier a comment by boxing journalist Thomas Hauser jumped out at me. Speaking of the famous third bout in the series between Frazier and his arch nemesis Muhammad Ali, Hauser suggested that while both men were slightly past their primes, on that day in Manila “their downward curves intersected at just the right point”. The result was one of the most celebrated fights in boxing history.
At a time when the boxing media and fans of the sport are fixated on the long awaited clash between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather I couldn’t help but think about the parallel.
While the majority of the boxing public are overjoyed by the recent announcement there are a few who feel these modern greats have left it too late. In fact even the exhilarated fans and scribes are probably in agreement but are merely determined to remain optimistic, and are just happy that it came together at all. It is, after all, still a fight between the two best welterweights in the world, at the very least.