Jeff Fenech in his prime
By Paul Upham: Australian thee-division boxing world champion Jeff Fenech feels honoured to be nominated among the top ten best ever featherweights as part of the World’s Greatest Ever Boxer event to be held in Las Vegas, USA over 2-4 October 2009.
“It is an honour to be recognised,” Fenech told SecondsOut. “I am proud to be flying the Australian flag in Las Vegas. I have tried to keep boxing alive in Australia. Hopefully I did that when I fought and hopefully I can continue to do that in the future.”
At featherweight, Fenech has been nominated alongside boxing legends such as Kid Chocolate, Wille Pep, Salvador Sanchez, Alexis Arguello, Azumah Nelson, Marco Antonio Barrera and Manny Pacquiao.
The World’s Greatest Ever Boxer is a global fan vote for the greatest boxers of all time. The end of the on-line internet voting process will see a unique weekend of entertainment, boxing and the unveiling of the Greatest Ever Boxer at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Resort in the heart of Las Vegas, 2-4 October 2009.
Chris Heverin hails from Melbourne, Australia and manages the day to day operation of Greatest Ever Enterprises, in conjunction with strategic partners around the world.
“It is a fantastic achievement and effort for Jeff to be nominated,” said Heverin. “He is a great ambassador for Australia and he is going to be at the event in Las Vegas to work with us and promote it.”
The global vote is now open for the World’s Greatest Ever Boxer. A jury of experts, including SecondsOut’s Thomas Hauser, has nominated fighters in the eight traditional boxing weight categories. In total, 82 boxers throughout the history of boxing have been named. There are twelve boxers at heavyweight and ten boxers in each of the weight classes from light heavyweight to flyweight.
“Already, we have had over 50,000 on-line votes from countries around the world,” said Heverin. “We will recognise the Greatest Ever boxer from each of the weight divisions and then we will announce who is the Greatest Ever boxer, pound for pound, of all time. Part of this process is about creating debate. The fan debate is what it is all about.”
45 year-old Fenech won the IBF bantamweight, WBC junior featherweight and WBC featherweight world titles during his career from 1984 to 1996. He was controversially denied a fourth world title at junior lightweight against Azumah Nelson in Las Vegas in June 1991.
Fenech and Nelson both made a comeback to active boxing in June 2008 in Melbourne, where the two Hall of Famers fought for a third time. Fenech winning a ten round majority points decision.
“I thank Chris and everyone at Greatest Ever for the idea and the privilege of being nominated,” said Fenech. “To all of the people who have supported me over the years, thank you. To my family and closest friends, I could not have done it without you. I have made a few mistakes in my life, but it is not the mistakes that you make, it is the person you are. My family and true friends know who I am and that is all that really matters.”