Abraham retires Marquez in Germany


Abraham retires Marquez in Germany

Arthur Abraham TKO6 Raul Marquez... King Arthur Abraham cruised to an uncontested seventh-round technical knockout victory over Raul Marquez in Bamberg on Saturday night. The undefeated IBF middleweight champion (28-0, 23 KOs) wore the mandatory challenger down. After absorbing numerous heavy shots throughout, Marquez quit on his stool after the sixth round. “That was another great performance by Arthur,” coach Ulli Wegner lauded. “He fought very cleverly. There is nobody in the middleweight division who can beat him.”

Abraham could count on some special support this time out as he was
fighting in front of a ferocious sell-out crowd in his home city. With
6.000 fans in the arena and famous German TV entertainer Oliver Pocher,
who carried the IBF belt, in his corner, King Arthur put on a show from
the first bell on. Unlike in other fights when he used to start slowly,
he rocked Marquez with a couple of big hands in the first round. “That
was our game plan,” Abraham revealed. “I wanted to make my presence
known to Marquez. I wanted to impress him early for him to stay on the
back foot.”

The tactics worked, with Abraham continuously firing in heavy
combinations in the following. Soon Marquez´ face was badly marked, and
after King Arthur landed two punishing rights, a cut opened above the
challenger’s right eye. The 37-year-old tried to fight back but most of
his shots were absorbed by Abraham´s defense. In the sixth, King Arthur
turned it on and caught his opponent in the ropes with a few heavy
combinations. It was too much for the brave challenger (41-4, 29 KOs),
who would not come out for the seventh round. “There was no need to
continue,” he explained. “My family is in my corner and they did not
want me to get further punishment. I hit him with my best shots but he
is a very strong guy. He punches very hard and very precisely. He really
is a great champion.” While Abraham admitted he was “disappointed not to
grant his home fans a more spectacular ending”, Wegner praised Marquez´
corner for their decision. “It was the right thing to do,” he said.
“Marquez would have been knocked out badly very soon.” Abraham was full
of praise for his opponent, who announced his retirement in the ring.
“He is a great fighter and a great person and it would be nice if there
were more boxers like him out there.”

Next up for King Arthur could be a unification clash with either Felix
Sturm or Kelly Pavlik. “We are still very interested in making the Sturm
fight happen,” manager Wilfried Sauerland said. “But it would have to
happen either in February or March because Arthur wants to fight Kelly
Pavlik next summer to determine the super-champion. After winning that
fight Arthur will then move up to super-middleweight.” King Arthur even
stated he would fight Sturm for free. “Everybody in Germany wants to see
the fight. I am ready. Money does not matter. This is about the honour.”
Asked about how the all-German showdown would end, Marquez said:
“Abraham will win by KO.”

Also on Saturday night, middleweight hopeful Dominik Britsch (11-0, 4
KOs) scored an uncontested points victory over Amar Amari.