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12 NOVEMBER 2018


“UNDISPUTED: A Golden Era in Australian Boxing” book now on sale

SecondsOut’s content editor Paul Upham has written his third book, “UNDISPUTED: A Golden Era in Australian Boxing” published by ABC Books and HarperCollins and is now on sale.

Would you call 30,000 people watching on as fierce rivals Anthony Mundine and Danny Green box a non-event? Danny Green’s achievement in getting world boxing great Roy Jones Jnr to Australia, and then knocking him out in round one, a small achievement? The fact that Australia had two true world champions, in Kostya Tszyu and Vic Darchinyan, a let-down? No, you wouldn’t, because Australian boxing in the last decade has been glorious — and that is undisputed.

Some commentators have labelled modern boxing controversial, irrelevant and not comparable with past eras, but Paul Upham disagrees with that, arguing that the recent achievements of Australian boxers lifted the sport to an extremely high level.

‘There is no doubt that Anthony Mundine leaving rugby league to become a world champion boxer was a huge catalyst for change. Through Anthony, a new media spotlight was shone onto the sport, and many other boxers benefited from this. The second important factor was the Sydney Olympic Games, which delivered not only three new Australian stars in Danny Green, Daniel Geale and Michael Katsidis, but an international mix of talent that was injected into the local boxing industry, raising the standard significantly,’ says Upham.

Boxing in Australia is steeped in history and tradition; the primal heat of battle and the triumph of the underdog have been woven into the fabric of Australian society. Over the years, boxing’s popularity has ebbed and flowed — by the late 1990s, the sport had taken a battering, damaged by pay-per-view television, the rise of other sports competing for attention, and the dearth of true stars fighting on the global stage.

But with the turn of the century came fresh hope. “Undisputed: A Golden Era in Australian Boxing” charts an exciting new time between the years 2000 and 2010, a period of promise and optimism. There was the presence and skill of Kostya Tszyu, Anthony Mundine, Vic Darchinyan and Danny Green, who punched above their weight at an international level. Super-fights flourished, with Kostya Tszyu versus Zab Judah, Anthony Mundine versus Danny Green, Vic Darchinyan versus Cristian Mijares and Danny Green versus Roy Jones Jr. Impressive performances at the highest level that helped push boxing back into the spotlight, raising the profile of the sport among boxing and mainstream sports fans.

Other boxers featured in the book include Michael Katsidis, Daniel Geale, Sakio Bika, Robbie Peden, Gairy St Clair, Lovemore Ndou, Sharon Anyos, Nedal Hussein, Hussein Hussein, Nader Hamdan, Paul Briggs, Glen Kelly, Shannan Taylor, Sam Soliman, Billy Dib, Lenny Zappavigna, Michael Bolling and Will Tomlinson. Also trainers Johnny Lewis, Angelo Hyder and Billy Hussein.

Australian boxing greats profiled include Young Griffo, Les Darcy, Vic Patrick, Tommy Burns, Dave Sands, Jimmy Carruthers, Lionel Rose, Johnny Famechon, Tony Mundine, Rocky Mattioli, Lester Ellis, Barry Michael, Jeff Fenech and Jeff Harding, along with a history of the Australian National Boxing Hall of Fame.

Included are stories on international boxers Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Shane Mosley, Roy Jones Jr and Lennox Lewis.

Now, in 2010, boxing has been lifted to a new level, coming much closer to scoring a perfect 10 — for the excitement, for the sport and for the fan. Boxing has really delivered.

“UNDISPUTED: A Golden Era in Australia Boxing” by Paul Upham is available in all books stores in Australia and New Zealand and can be purchased international on-line at ABC Books HERE!.

Books by Paul Upham

Australian Boxing Almanac (2005) – IDG Communications

Something Worth Fighting For (2007) – ABC Books

Undisputed: A Golden Era in Australian Boxing (2010) – ABC Books & HarperCollins

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