Advertisement
Advertisement

Soliman Views Sturm as The Final Road To a Title

By Melissa Woods

WHEN the stooped figure with the grey beard and long-handled scythe passes through Melbourne shortly to oversee the transition from the old year to the new, he might stop by for a chat to boxer Sam Soliman.

Spar a couple of rounds with him, perhaps.

"The only thing stopping us now is Old Father Time - and there is no stopping him," Soliman's veteran trainer Dave Hedgecock said yesterday.

That's another way of saying that at the twilight end of one of the longest careers of any Australian boxer, it's now or never for Soliman, who turned 39 last month.

The world title he has been chasing all his life - for more than 170 fights, amateur and professional, kickboxing and Marquess of Queensberry - is now there staring at him.

All he has to do is reach out and grab it.

Stripped of the dodgy politics and broken promises that are such a feature of the fight game, the situation has shaken itself down.

In Sydney on January 30, Daniel Geale will put his IBF middleweight world title on the line against Anthony Mundine.

In Dusseldorf four days later, Soliman will fight German Felix Sturm, who lost the WBA and IBF titles to Geale in September.

The IBF have insisted that the winner of Geale-Mundine must defend the belt against the winner of Soliman-Sturm.

The obligatory hype is under way, with Foxtel interviewing Soliman in an atmospheric Brunswick gym yesterday to promote the fight, to be shown live on pay-for-view.

It is being billed as "a dream week" for boxing fans with much being made of Geale and Mundine both being indigenous athletes - with plenty of tension between them - and it could lead to successive all-Australian title fights.

There is probably a reason why Soliman has never won a world title in so many years of trying, so he will have his work cut out with this twin challenge.

But he has a few things going for him, not least that he is a popular figure and will have plenty of moral support.

"No one deserves a title shot more," boxing expert Barry Michael said yesterday.

Knowing how hard it is to get a decision in Germany his management have insisted on a neutral referee and judges.

Soliman is a non-drinker with an immaculately clean lifestyle who trains the house down and has always been one of Australia's fittest athletes. He looks in fantastic shape - as usual.

He will travel to London in the new year to complete preparations in the same time zone, leaving as little as possible to chance.

Of course, his age will be a factor.

But Hedgecock insists signs of decline become obvious in training and none have been detected yet.

Optimistically, Soliman claims he can win the title and defend it two or three times over two years.

Hedgecock agrees.

Even if he loses, he has no plans to retire - unless he is knocked out, which would be a warning even he could not ignore.

Hopefully it won't come to that.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by BafanaBafana on 12-31-2012

Wasn't he already Geale's mandatory? Maybe he meant to say Sturm is "the final road to my retirement fund."

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (1)
Top Headlines WBC Prez Admits Tough Spot - if Mayweather, Khan Target Garcia Marcus Morrison Enters First Title Fight On Crolla-Barroso Bill Lennox Lewis: This is Khan's Time To Secure Place With UK Stars Nonito Donaire's Next Defense in Cebu or Dubai - With Magdaleno? Euro News: Edis Tatli, Eva Wahlstrom, Schwarz, Soslan Tedeev Crolla-Barroso: Marcus Morrison Pumped For WBC Title Fight Holyfield Cautions That Khan Must Make Adustments At All Times Anthony Yigit Aims To Steal The Show at Barclaycard Arena Video: Virgil Hunter Discusses Factors in Canelo vs. Khan David Haye: I'll Be Surprised if Shannon Briggs Beats Dimitrenko Video: Lennox Lewis Hits Las Vegas For Canelo vs. Khan Canelo's Trainer: Golovkin is Not a Difficult Fight, It's Only Tough Hopkins: Big Not Always Better, But Canelo KO's Khan in 9 or 10 Glen Tapia on David Lemieux Fight: I Will Turn My Haters Into Fans Video: WBC Prez on Canelo-Golovkin Situation, Khan, Stevenson Hunter: Khan Winning is No Upset, Canelo is NOT Very Good Video: Evander Holyfield Breaks Down The Heavyweight Division Hunter Feels Canelo's Edge Due to Weight a Bit Exaggerated Video: Hopkins on Donald Trump, Caitlyn Jenner, Canelo-Khan Khan Says KO is Tough, Confident He Can Box Canelo's Ears Off Photos/Weights: Marvin Quintero vs. Petr Petrov, More De La Hoya: People Laughed at My Pacquiao Fight - He Retired Me! Video: Lucas Matthysse on Career Status, Future in Boxing Video: Eddie Hearn Talks Joshua, Fury, Crolla, Groves, Murray Photos: Canelo vs. Khan Undercard Final Press Conference Hunter Admits Amir Khan Lacking 'Killer Instinct' in His Arsenal Felix Diaz vs. Miguel Vazquez: PBC on FS1, 5/28 WBC: Adonis Stevenson Must Face Eleider Alvarez After Next Fight Video: Joe Gallagher Talks Crolla vs. Barroso Clash Canelo-Khan II Would Be Pursued in '16 if Khan Wins De La Hoya's Story in Doubt as Trump 'Great Golfer' Video Surfaces Alantez Fox Faces Milton Nunez on PBC on Bounce Video: Anthony Crolla Ready For Barroso Showdown WBC Prez: Mayweather is Champion Emeritus Like Klitschko Was Lemieux: I Still Believe That I Can Beat Gennady Golovkin Zolani Tete is Upset By Withdrawal of Zhanat Zhakiyanov WBC: If Khan Wins, He Can Choose Golovkin at 160 or Garcia at 147 Kermit Cintron Ready For Battle With Eduardo Flores Photos: Canelo vs. Khan Undercard Open Workouts Photos: Anthony Crolla, Ismael Barroso Go Face To Face
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement