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Klitschko Aims To Join 50 KO Club Against Mormeck

After witnessing his elder brother Vitali get taken the distance for just the fourth time in his 46 fight professional career by the former British and Commonweath Heavyweight champion Derek Chisora and also being spat upon by Chisora prior to the fight, Wladimir Klitchsko returns to the ring to defend his WBA Super, WBO, IBF and IBO Heavyweight titles against the former World Cruiserweight Champion Jean Marc Mormeck of France at the 54,500 capacity Esprit Arena in Dusseldorf Germany, which is the current home of Bundesliga 2 side Fortuna Dusseldorf.

It will be the second time that Klitchsko will have defended his titles at the Esprit Arena, having previously defeated former WBO mandatory challenger Eddie Chambers of the United States back in 2010 when he knocked the much smaller Chambers out with just five seconds left of the fight to cap what was another dominating performance.

It will also be the 11th defence for Klitchsko in his second reign as World Heavyweight Champion after defeating the American Chris Byrd with a 7th round technical knockout back in 2006 in Mannheim Germany. It is also his 60th bout since turning professional after winning gold at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics as a Super Heavyweight.

Since the victory against Byrd, Klitchsko looked unstoppable in his six year reign as the King of the Heavyweights, knocking out eight of his last 10 opponents who have challenged him and alongside his elder brother Vitali, has successfully unified the Heavyweight division to become the first brothers to do so.

The latest opponent to face off against the younger Klitchsko is 39 year old Frenchman Jean Marc Mormeck, former two time World Cruiserweight Champion.

Mormeck himself has his own goals he aims to try and defeat Klitchsko to become the first Frenchman ever to win the World Heavyweight title, but to also become the third man after Evander Holyfield and common foe David Haye to win world titles at both Cruiserweight and Heavyweight.

However, this only the fifth time in his career that Mormeck has fought above the Cruiserweight limit of 14stone 4lbs [200 pounds] in his 40 fight professional career.

His four previous fights at Heavyweight have come against American journeyman Sebastian Hill, who was stopped in just four rounds way back in 2006, tough American brawler Vinny Maddalone who was defeated on points over eight rounds in Paris in 2009, former world title challenger Fres Oquendo back in 2010 which was also in Paris and lastly, Timur Ibragimov whom Mormeck took a 12 round split decision off to win a minor WBA trinket in his last fight, all of which makes Mormeck a considerable underdog going into this fight against Wladimir.

The fight, which has been billed in Germany as "Alle Gürtel Ein Champion" [All Belts One Champion], had been postponed from December 2011 due to Klitchsko experiencing problems with kidney stones that required surgery but he also contracted a fever which caused it to be postponed.

However the new date did give some cause for concern as Wladimir was scheduled to undertake a mandatory defence of his IBF belt against former victim Tony Thompson. However, following negotiations the mandatory appears to have been put back and the IBF have since sanctioned that their belt be defended against Mormeck.

In the press conference, Mormeck stated his goal of becoming the first Frenchman to lift the World Heavyweight title while Klitchsko stated his goals of retaining his titles and scoring his 50th knockout, which he failed to achieve in his last fight against Haye in Hamburg.

Should Klitchsko succeed in stopping Mormeck on Saturday night, he will join an exclusive club of fighters who have scored 50 knockouts in their careers. The list includes three-weight world champion Julio Cesar Chavez Snr, who scored 86 knockouts in his 115 fight professional career, Roberto Duran who scored 70 knockouts in a 119 fight professional career and Marvellous Marvin Hagler, who scored 52 knockouts in 67 bouts, amongst others.

Klitchsko is clearly the overwhelming betting favourite and has the clear height, reach and weight advantages over Mormeck.

However, with Mormeck standing at just under 6ft, Klitchsko will have to punch down which means that he may have difficulty in the early stages to fully land his punches on the smaller fighter.

Mormeck will be looking to try and slip under Klitchsko’s long punishing left jab to work the body in an attempt to expose Klitchsko’s chin, which has seen him knocked down 12 times and stopped on three occasions.

However, Klitchsko, with his superior experience and technical ability, will look to either tie up and use his weight to lean on Mormeck in an effort to tire the older man out.

But the betting sees Klitchsko winning on an early knockout, although this writer expects a Klitchsko knockout in the later rounds after wearing down a game Mormeck, who is ultimately outclassed by the younger, stronger and more technically gifted Klitschko.

About Iain Langmaid

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