By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Australian boxing publication “The Greatest” was distributed throughout Australia this week and leading boxing scribe from “Down Under,” Grantlee Kieza lists the best performances by Aussie fighters. What is the greatest performance by an Australian boxer? The debate was again sparked when Danny Green stopped boxing legend Roy Jones Jr in December 2009 and Daniel Geale’s recent demolition of former world champion Roman Karmazin.
Since boxing gloves started being used in 1884 we have had some cracking performances. Just as we did when we rated the top 50 Australian boxers of all time we decided to ask ward winning journalist Grantlee Kieza to list the top 40 performances by Aussie boxers.
Grantlee has covered boxing for Australia’s biggest newspaper group for 30 years, he wrote the definitive book on the history of Australian boxing, the definitive television documentary and has been involved in every Australian boxing publication spanning four decades. He was in the corner of many of Australia’s greats as Johnny Lewis’ right hand man and has interviewed world heavyweight champions from Max Schmelling to the giant Russian Nikolai Valuev. He was once smashed into a steel dressing room locker by a playful Mike Tyson.
We find it tough to argue with his selections. Why did he rate Jimmy Carruthers win over Vic Toweel as the No. 1 performance?
“Back in the 50’s there were only eight weight divisions and one champion per weight division,” Kieza said. ” Jimmy flew halfway around the world, which was a big thing in itself 60 years ago and took on the undefeated, undisputed world champ in his own backyard – not only before a huge crowd of South Africans in a football stadium but also the high altitude of Johannesburg where many athletes have been brought undone by breathing problems…His victory was one of the most shocking and one-sided in the whole history of the sport.”
Some great champs missed out on our top final 40. Try as we might we could not find room for Nedal “Skinny” Hussein dropping Manny Pacquiao, Jimmy Kelso whipping Al Foreman, Jeff Fenech winning his third world title against Victor Callejas, Kostya Tszyu pounding Miguel Angel Gonzalez or Sakio Bika winning the Contender series against Jadon Codrington or manhandling Markus Beyer and giving Joe Calzaghe fits.
The top 40 Grantlee has selected will take some beating.