Enzo Maccarinelli

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Enzo Maccarinelli
Denis Lebedev v Enzo Maccarinelli.jpg
Maccarinelli (right) and Lebedev, 2009
Nickname(s) Big Mac
Rated at Light-heavyweight
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Reach 74 in (190 cm)
Nationality Welsh
Born (1980-08-20) 20 August 1980 (age 35)
Swansea, Wales
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 49
Wins 41
Wins by KO 33
Losses 8

Enzo Maccarinelli (born 20 August 1980) is a Welsh former professional boxer who competed from 1999 to 2016. A popular fighter throughout his eventful career, Maccarinelli was widely regarded as one of boxing's hardest punchers, pound for pound. Throughout his career he held the European and British cruiserweight titles, as well as the Commonwealth light-heavyweight title. The peak of Maccarinelli's career came when he became a world champion by winning the WBO cruiserweight title in 2006. Nicknamed "Big Mac", Maccarinelli was known as a crowd favourite, and during his career accumulated an 80.4% knockout win ratio. He announced his retirement following a knockout loss in June 2016.

Boxing career[edit]

Early career[edit]

On 12 May 2000, Maccarinelli suffered his first defeat at the hands of southpaw Lee Swaby. Swaby, from Lincoln, England, sent Maccarinelli down with a crushing right hand, knocking Maccarinelli down in the third round. Maccarinelli never took the rematch against Swaby.

On 28 June 2003, Maccarinelli, known as "the Big Mac" won the vacant WBU cruiserweight title when he defeated Bruce Scott by fourth-round TKO.[1] He made seven successful defences of his WBU title before vacating.

WBO cruiserweight title[edit]

On 8 July 2006, Maccarinelli fought against former World Boxing Council (WBC) cruiserweight champion Marcelo Fabian Domínguez for the WBO interim cruiserweight title. Maccarinelli won the title with a ninth-round TKO.[1] The natural progression was a title fight against the then WBO title holder, Johnny Nelson. Due to several injuries to Nelson this matchup never transpired, and on 22 September 2006 he announced his retirement, automatically relinquishing the belt and allowing Maccarinelli to be promoted to full champion status.[2]

Title defences[edit]

On 14 October 2006 Maccarinelli made his first defence of the WBO title, stopping former opponent Mark Hobson in the first round in a fight that was widely expected to last the distance. This was followed by another first round win over Bobby Gunn on 7 April 2007 at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. The Gunn fight was stopped with just :25 seconds remaining in the first round by referee Mark Nelson, even though Gunn was not down and only had a small cut. It was widely and erroneously reported that Maccarinelli had broken Bobby Gunn's nose, but it was a small cut to the bridge of the nose that caused the bleeding. Gunn's nose was not broken and most observers at ringside thought the fight was stopped prematurely.

On 21 July 2007 Maccarinelli defended his WBO cruiserweight championship against former WBC champ Wayne Braithwaite and won by unanimous decision, after dominating the match. On 3 November 2007 Maccarinelli successfully defended his WBO cruiserweight title against Mohamed Azzaoui winning by TKO in the 4th Round.

In July 2012, Maccarinelli was banned for six months after testing positive for Methylhexaneamine.[3]

'Bombs Away' and loss of title[edit]

Maccarinelli's next fight was an all-British unification fight against the WBA/WBC champion David Haye. The fight took place on 8 March 2008 at the O2 Arena, London and was much hyped in the weeks running up to the event, being given the tagline "bombs away" (referring to the high KO percentages and punching power both men boasted). Maccarinelli lost the fight and his WBO belt when he was knocked out in the 2nd round. A right hand by Haye knocked Maccarinelli down towards the end of the round and although he was able to get back up it was on unsteady legs and the referee stepped in to stop the fight.[4]

After the fight Haye announced that he would be moving up to the heavyweight division with immediate effect and would therefore be vacating his newly won belts. Because of this Maccarinelli received an immediate opportunity to reclaim his WBO belt in a matchup against undefeated American Jonathon Banks for the now vacant championship, but due to injury Banks was forced to pull out. After several replacements were unable to fight, Maccarinelli instead stepped up to heavyweight to face Matthew Ellis. Maccarinelli won after a 2nd round KO in what was his debut at the higher weight.[5] After the fight Frank Warren announced that Maccarinelli would face Banks in a re-scheduled bout for the WBO belt during February 2009.

Once again the Banks fight proved to be a non-starter (Banks opted to make an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to win the IBF cruiserweight title against Tomasz Adamek) and instead Maccarinelli's next fight was against the American-based Londoner Ola Afolabi for the "interim" WBO title. The fight took place on 14 March at the M.E.N. Arena in Manchester, on the undercard of the Amir Khan vs Marco Antonio Barrera bout. Maccarinelli was favoured by most observers to win, however things did not go as expected as Maccarinelli struggled in the early rounds and was staggered in the 3rd round by a short chopping right hand from the slick Afolabi. Despite managing to recover and win the majority of the next few rounds he was knocked out by Afolabi in round 9 when a huge overhand right put him on the canvas and forced the referee to call off the fight.[6]

Lebedev fight, "retirement" and return[edit]

Maccarinelli's next fight was against the unbeaten Russian Denis Lebedev on 18 July 2009. As with the Afolabi contest the fight took place at the M.E.N. Arena on the undercard of an Amir Khan fight, this time Khan's WBA light-welterweight title challenge against Andreas Kotelnik. From the very beginning of the fight Maccarinelli struggled with the power of his opponent and by the end of the second round his right eye had swollen completely shut from the punches landed by Lebedev. In the third round Lebedev rocked Maccarinelli with an uppercut which landed cleanly through his guard and after a further barrage of unanswered punches the referee stepped in and called a stop to the fight.[7]

Before the fight Maccarinelli had admitted that the contest represented "the last chance saloon" in terms of getting his career back on track, following 2 KO losses in his last 3 fights, and talking immediately after the defeat he hinted that this latest setback could signal the end of his boxing career. In an interview with his local paper a few days later Maccarinelli apparently confirmed his intention to retire from the sport,[8] although he retracted this in a later interview with the same source.[9]

Maccarinelli began his latest comeback attempt on another Amir Khan undercard, this time Khan's WBA Light-Welterweight title defence against on 5 December at the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle. His opponent was the relatively unknown Hungarian journeyman Krisztian Jaksi.[10] who provided little resistance and was knocked out in the 1st round.[11] Maccarinelli managed a second consecutive 1st round KO victory against Hungarian opposition when he defeated Zoltan Czekus at the Echo Arena Liverpool on 13 March 2010.

EBU title shot[edit]

Following his two quick comeback wins Maccarinelli's next fight took place on 27 April 2010 when he fought Russian prospect Alexander Kotlobay in St Petersburg for the vacant European cruiserweight title. Despite now being the fighter that had to travel and fight on someone else's patch, Maccarinelli scored his third consecutive quick victory when he knocked Kotlobay down with an overhand right before the referee stepped in to end the fight at 2:15 of the first round.[12]

His first defence of his newly won title came as part of Frank Warren's "Magnificent Seven" fight card, which took place on 18 September 2010 at the LG Arena in Birmingham.[13] His opponent for this defence was the undefeated Ukrainian prospect Alexander Frenkel. Despite a tentative opening round Maccarinelli improved and managed to rock his opponent in the fourth round with a right hand. A clash of heads in the sixth led to a cut developing over his right eye, however the fight still appeared to be going Maccarinelli's way until he was knocked down heavily towards the end of round seven by a left hook from Frenkel. Despite managing to rise by the count of nine he was extremely unsteady and appeared to be in no position to defend himself. However the referee allowed the bout to continue, only for it to be stopped a few seconds later when a three punch combination from Frenkel led to a second knockdown. The final blows were struck with such ferocity that Maccarinelli was knocked unconscious and required oxygen and medical attention before being able to leave the ring. At the time of the fight there was heavy criticism from both journalists and fellow boxers at the decision by the referee to allow the fight to continue after the first knockdown, when it was clear that Maccarinelli was in no position to defend himself.[14][15][16]

As with the aftermath of the Afolabi and Lebedev defeats there were also been calls for Maccarinelli to retire from the ring, something which the boxer himself admitted to the press was a distinct possibility following his fourth KO loss in eight fights.[17]

Move to light heavyweight[edit]

After a period of inactivity following the Frenkel defeat, in February 2011 Maccarinelli announced that rather than retiring he would instead be dropping down in weight to compete in the 175 lb Light Heavyweight division, with a view to having his first fight at the weight limit later on in the year.[18]

Several months later he made the further announcement that he would once again be working with former coach Enzo Calzaghe, who was part of Maccarinelli's team during his successful run at cruiserweight.[19] At the same time he also expressed a desire to fight for a world title at the new weight limit in the future, and in particular put forward the idea of an all Welsh title fight between himself and current WBO belt holder Nathan Cleverly.[20]

Exactly 14 months after his last in-ring appearance Maccarinelli's first fight at the new weight limit took place at the York Hall in Bethnal Green on 18 November 2011. As with 2 of his previous 4 fights at cruiserweight the opponent was a Hungarian fighter, this time the undefeated (and relatively unknown) Gyorgy Marosi. Maccarinelli emerged victorious, scoring a 1st round TKO victory after just 99 seconds against an overmatched Marosi.[21]

Following the successful debut at 175 lbs Maccarinelli reiterated his desire to fight for a world title at 175 lbs and again made reference to an all Welsh bout with Cleverly, although ruled out the prospect of such a matchup occurring straight away.[22]

Return to cruiserweight and retirement[edit]

In 2015 Maccarinelli returned to cruiserweight and in December knocked out the then 46-year-old Roy Jones Jr. in the fourth round at the VTB Ice Palace in Moscow.[23] In June 2016 he fought Dmytro Kucher for the vacant European cruiserweight title, but lost by TKO in the first round, subsequently announcing his retirement from boxing.[24]

Professional boxing record[edit]

41 Wins (33 knockouts, 8 decisions), 8 Losses (8 knockouts, 0 decisions), 0 Draws[25]
Res. Record Opponent Type Rd., Time Date Location Notes
Loss 41-8 Ukraine Dmytro Kucher TKO 1 (12), 2:48 2016-06-10 United Kingdom York Hall, Bethnal Green, London For vacant European (EBU) Cruiserweight title.
Win 41–7 United States Roy Jones, Jr. KO 4 (12), 1:59 2015-12-12 Russia VTB Arena, Moscow
Win 40–7 Czech Republic Jiri Svacina TKO 5 (10), 2:00 2015-10-10 United Kingdom Newport Centre, Newport
Win 39–7 Hungary Gyorgy Novak TKO 1 (8), 0:48 2015-03-14 United Kingdom Victoria Warehouse, Manchester
Loss 38–7 Germany Jürgen Brähmer RTD 5 (12), 3:00 2014-04-05 Germany Stadthalle, Rostock, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern For WBA (Regular) Light Heavyweight title.
Win 38–6 United Kingdom Courtney Fry TKO 7 (10), 1:46 2013-12-07 United Kingdom Echo Arena, Liverpool
Win 37–6 United Kingdom Ovill McKenzie TKO 11 (12), 2:44 2013-08-17 United Kingdom Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, Cardiff Won Commonwealth Light Heavyweight Title.
Win 36–6 United Kingdom Carl Wild KO 6 (6), 2:18 2013-04-20 United Kingdom Wembley Arena, Wembley, London
Loss 35–6 United Kingdom Ovill McKenzie TKO 2 (12), 2:15 2012-09-11 United Kingdom Olympia, Liverpool For Commonwealth Light Heavyweight Title.
Win 35–5 United Kingdom Shane McPhilbin UD 12 2012-03-23 United Kingdom Civic Hall, Wolverhampton, West Midlands Won British Cruiserweight Title.
Win 34–5 Republic of Ireland Ciaran Healy TKO 2 (8), 2:50 2012-02-25 United Kingdom Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, Cardiff
Win 33–5 Hungary Gyorgy Marosi TKO 1 (8), 1:39 2011-11-18 United Kingdom York Hall, Bethnal Green, London
Loss 32–5 Germany Alexander Frenkel KO 7 (12), 2:30 2010-09-18 United Kingdom LG Arena, Birmingham, West Midlands Lost European (EBU) Cruiserweight Title.
Win 32–4 Russia Alexander Kotlobay TKO 1 (12), 2:15 2010-04-27 Russia Yubileiny Sports Palace, Saint Petersburg Won European (EBU) Cruiserweight Title.
Win 31–4 Hungary Zoltan Czekus TKO 1 (8), 2:04 2010-03-12 United Kingdom Echo Arena, Liverpool
Win 30–4 Hungary Krisztian Jaksi KO 1 (6), 1:34 2009-12-05 United Kingdom Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle, Tyne and Wear
Loss 29–4 Russia Denis Lebedev TKO 3 (12), 2:20 2009-07-18 United Kingdom M.E.N. Arena, Manchester For vacant WBO Inter-Continental Cruiserweight Title.
Loss 29–3 United Kingdom Ola Afolabi KO 9 (12), 1:50 2009-03-14 United Kingdom M.E.N. Arena, Manchester For Interim WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 29–2 United Kingdom Matthew Ellis TKO 2 (10), 1:28 2008-12-06 United Kingdom ExCel Arena, Dockland, London
Loss 28–2 United Kingdom David Haye TKO 2 (12), 2:04 2008-03-08 United Kingdom The O2 Arena, Greenwich, London Lost WBO Cruiserweight Title.
For WBC, WBA (Super) World Cruiserweight Titles.
Win 28–1 Algeria Mohamed Azzaoui TKO 4 (12), 0:58 2007-11-03 United Kingdom Millennium Stadium, Cardiff Retained WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 27–1 Guyana Wayne Braithwaite UD 12 2007-07-21 United Kingdom Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff Retained WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 26–1 United States Bobby Gunn TKO 1 (12), 2:35 2007-04-07 United Kingdom Millennium Stadium, Cardiff Retained WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 25–1 United Kingdom Mark Hobson TKO 1 (12), 1:11 2006-10-14 United Kingdom M.E.N. Arena, Manchester Retained WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 24–1 Argentina Marcelo Fabian Dominguez TKO 9 (12), 0:58 2006-07-08 United Kingdom Millennium Stadium, Cardiff Won Interim WBO Cruiserweight Title.
Win 23–1 United Kingdom Mark Hobson UD 12 2006-03-04 United Kingdom M.E.N. Arena, Manchester Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 22–1 Germany Marco Heinichen KO 1 (10), 1:38 2005-11-26 Italy Palazzetto dello Sport, Rome, Lazio
Win 21–1 Poland Roman Bugaj TKO 1 (8), 1:55 2005-06-04 United Kingdom M.E.N. Arena, Manchester
Win 20–1 United States Rich LaMontagne TKO 4 (12), 1:04 2005-01-21 United Kingdom Bridgend Leisure Centre, Bridgend Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 19–1 Denmark Jesper Kristiansen KO 3 (12), 2:05 2004-09-03 United Kingdom Newport Leisure Centre, Newport Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 18–1 Belgium Ismail Abdoul UD 12 2004-07-03 United Kingdom Newport Leisure Centre, Newport Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 17–1 United Kingdom Gary Delaney TKO 8 (12), 2:37 2004-02-21 United Kingdom Wales National Ice Rink, Cardiff Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 16–1 South Africa Earl Morais KO 1 (12), 1:30 2003-12-06 United Kingdom Wales National Ice Rink, Cardiff Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 15–1 Estonia Andrei Karsten KO 1 (12), 1:10 2003-09-13 United Kingdom Newport Leisure Centre, Newport Retained WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 14–1 United Kingdom Bruce Scott TKO 4 (12), 2:49 2003-06-18 United Kingdom Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff Won vacant WBU Cruiserweight Title.
Win 13–1 Estonia Valeri Semiskur TKO 1 (12), 1:38 2003-03-29 United Kingdom Mountbatten Centre, Portsmouth, Hampshire
Win 12–1 United Kingdom Paul Bonson PTS 4 2003-01-18 United Kingdom Guild Hall, Preston, Lancashire
Win 11–1 United Kingdom Dave Clarke TKO 2 (4), 2:38 2002-10-12 United Kingdom York Hall, Bethnal Green, London
Win 10–1 United Kingdom Tony Booth TKO 2 (4), 1:51 2002-08-17 United Kingdom Cardiff Castle, Cardiff
Win 9–1 United Kingdom Tony Booth PTS 4 2002-04-20 United Kingdom Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff
Win 8–1 Zimbabwe James Gilbert TKO 2 (6), 2:18 2002-02-12 United Kingdom York Hall, Bethnal Green, London
Win 7–1 United Kingdom Kevin Barrett TKO 2 (6), 2:38 2001-12-15 United Kingdom Wembley Conference Centre, Wembley, London
Win 6–1 United Kingdom Eamon Glennon TKO 2 (4), ? 2001-10-09 United Kingdom Wales National Ice Rink, Cardiff
Win 5–1 United Kingdom Darren Ashton KO 1 (4), 1:15 2001-04-18 United Kingdom Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff
Win 4–1 United Kingdom Chris Woollas PTS 4 2000-12-11 United Kingdom Kingsway Leisure Centre, Widnes, Cheshire
Loss 3–1 United Kingdom Lee Swaby KO 3 (4), 2:35 2000-05-12 United Kingdom Swansea Leisure Centre, Swansea
Win 3–0 United Kingdom Nigel Rafferty TKO 3 (4), 2:52 2000-02-26 United Kingdom Swansea Leisure Centre, Swansea
Win 2–0 United Kingdom Mark Williams TKO 1 (4), 0:35 1999-12-11 United Kingdom Rhydycar Leisure Centre, Merthyr
Win 1–0 United Kingdom Paul Bonson PTS 4 1999-10-02 United Kingdom Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff

Personal life[edit]

Maccarinelli considers himself a "Britalian", someone born in Britain and of Italian heritage.[citation needed] Maccarinelli attended Bishop Vaughan Catholic School in Swansea. He studied there until sixth form but then carried on with his boxing career. He is married and a father. He is a passionate Swansea City supporter, and has appeared at the Liberty Stadium with his championship belts.

Titles held[edit]

  • WBU Cruiserweight Champion (2003–2006)
  • WBO Cruiserweight Champion (2006–2008)
  • European Cruiserweight Champion (2010)
  • British Cruiserweight Champion (2012)
  • Commonwealth Light Heavyweight Champion (2013–present)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b BoxRec.com editors. "Enzo Maccarinelli." Boxrec.com. URL accessed 11 July 2006.
  2. ^ Fightnews.com editors. "Nelson relinquishes title!" 22 September 2006. Fightnews.com. URL accessed 22 September 2006.
  3. ^ "Enzo Maccarinelli handed six-month drugs ban". Retrieved 18 July 2012. 
  4. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Awesome Haye stops Maccarinelli
  5. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Maccarinelli stops Ellis in two
  6. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Maccarinelli suffers KO loss
  7. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Maccarinelli Faces The End After Loss
  8. ^ Russian Loss Signals The End For Enzo
  9. ^ Enzo: I'm not going to give up yet
  10. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Jaksi up for Maccarinelli return
  11. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Maccarinelli beats up Jaksi in first round in Newcastle
  12. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Enzo Maccarinelli beats Kotlobay to claim Euro title
  13. ^ Frankwarren.tv | Latest News | Mega card for September
  14. ^ Maccarinelli knocked out cold after referee lets Frenkel punch on
  15. ^ Daily Mirror | Frank Warren's anger at Macca KO referee
  16. ^ [1]
  17. ^ BBC Sport | Boxing | Maccarinelli ponders boxing retirement
  18. ^ BBC Sport | Enzo Maccarinelli drops down to fight on
  19. ^ BBC Sport | Maccarinelli back with coach Enzo Calzaghe.
  20. ^ BBC Sport | Maccarinelli eyes Cleverly world title bout
  21. ^ BBC Sport | Enzo Maccarinelli returns with first round win
  22. ^ BBC Sport | Maccarinelli enjoying last fighting chance
  23. ^ "Enzo Maccarinelli beats Roy Jones Jr with fourth-round knockout", BBC, 12 December 2015. Retrieved 11 June 2016
  24. ^ Griffiths, Gareth (2016) "Welsh boxer Enzo Maccarinelli announces retirement after European title defeat", Wales Online, 11 June 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016
  25. ^ [2]

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
New title WBO Cruiserweight Interim Champion
8 July 2006 – 22 September 2006
Title next held by
Victor Emilio Ramírez
Preceded by
Johnny Nelson
WBO Cruiserweight Champion
22 September 2006  – 8 March 2008
Succeeded by
David Haye
Title last held by
Marco Huck
EBU Cruiserweight Champion
27 April 2010  – 18 October 2010
Succeeded by
Alexander Frenkel