Fans of German heavyweight boxing should take a close look at Halle (Saale) this Friday (September 14th) or follow the action live on Eurosport (starting at 21.00h / 9pm Central European time). Ring veteran Timo Hoffmann (aka the „German Oak“) takes on local rival and former amateur standout Steffen Kretschmann in a fight which could easily end the loser’s career. At age 37, it seems to be Hoffmann’s last chance to get himself in position for bigger and more lucrative fights. Kretschmann on the other hand needs a clear victory as well after losing twice to Russian powerhouse Denis Bakhtov and basically disappearing from the heavyweight scene for the last two years.
„Basically, this is a winner takes all fight“, says promoter Ahmet Oner. „Whoever loses in this bout can as well call it a day. Kretschmann was the best and most promising heavyweight prospect we had in Germany for a while but he was exposed by Bakhtov. Steffen just couldn’t handle the public pressure. Hoffmann always had a similar problem, he just couldn’t win the big fights. He fought for the European championship three times in his career and just couldn’t win that belt. Both men know that this is there last chance so I guess it should be a good fight.“
In the second heavyweight clash of the night, WBC Mediterranean champion Erkan Teper defends his belt against hard-hitting Nigerian Gbenga Oloukun. Originally, Teper was scheduled to face fellow German Konstantin Airich but Airich was taken off the card after testing positive for testosterone. Now Oloukun jumps in who actually knocked out Airich live on Eurosport coming in as a late replacement for another opponent two years ago.
„Fighting Oloukun is never a gimme“, says Oner. „Erkan knows that he has to be very focused. He cannot take any chances. There’s a reason why Oloukun calls himself ‚Bang Bang’. He made himself a name pulling some upsets over the last years so this should be another exciting bout.“
The show takes place at the TABEA Bürgerpark in Halle (Saale) where Hoffmann and Kretschmann will meet for a press conference tomorrow (Sept. 11) at 11am. The offciial weigh-in is scheduled for Thursday (Sept. 13) at 17:00h / 5pm at the Neustadt Centrum, a local shopping mall in Halle. Eurosport wlll broadcast the show live on Friday night (Sept. 14th) starting at 21.00h / 9pm.