John Conteh

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John Conteh
John Conteh c1973.jpg
Conteh c. 1973
Statistics
Rated at Light-heavyweight
Height 6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Reach 76 in (193 cm)
Nationality British
Born (1951-05-27) 27 May 1951 (age 65)
Liverpool, Merseyside,
England
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 39
Wins 34
Wins by KO 24
Losses 4
Draws 1

John Conteh (born 27 May 1951) is a British former professional boxer who competed from 1971 to 1980. He held multiple light-heavyweight championships, including the WBC title from 1974 to 1978; and the European, British, and Commonwealth titles between 1973 and 1974.

Professional career[edit]

John Conteh began boxing at the age of 10 at a boxing club in Kirkby that was a training ground for some of the best amateur boxers, such as Joey Singleton, Tucker Hetherington, and Stuart Morton. At 19, he won the middleweight gold medal at the 1970 British Commonwealth Games. He won the WBC light-heavyweight title in October 1974 by defeating Jorge Ahumada. He held the title until 1977 when he was stripped for not going through with a mandated defence.[1]

Conteh lost a 15-round split decision to the Yugoslavian fighter Mate Parlov when he attempted to regain the title.[2] He failed twice in further efforts to win back the crown, in 1979 and then again seven months later in 1980, on both occasions fighting the American Matthew Saad Muhammad. Muhammad won both bouts but the first victory was declared void because his cornermen used an illegal substance on a cut.[3]

Life after boxing[edit]

Conteh was one of the celebrities featured dressed in prison gear on the cover of the 1973 Wings album, Band on the Run.[4] He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1974.[5]

Conteh also has the distinction of being British Superstars competition champion in 1974, the second year of the televised sporting event. Conteh is now an after-dinner speaker and speaks at venues all across the country.

Conteh appeared on the BBC television programme Sporting Legends which was presented by Eamonn Holmes. There he spoke at length at how he started out in boxing and how Ali persuaded him to fight at Light-Heavyweight instead of Heavyweight. Ali believed that Conteh was too small to be a heavyweight. Conteh also spoke of how his lifestyle led to alcoholism and a charge of assault, he stated that at the time he appeared on Sporting Legends he had been dry for nine years.[citation needed]

Conteh also appeared in films such as Man at the Top (1973), The Stud (1978) and Tank Malling (1989), and made a starring appearance in the television show Boon in 1989, as a washed-up boxer. He more recently appeared on a boxing special of The Weakest Link in 2009, where he finished in third place. His most recent TV acting appearance was in the crime drama Justice, in which he again played an ex-boxer.

Professional boxing record[edit]

Professional record summary
39 fights 34 wins 4 losses
By knockout 24 1
By decision 10 3
Draws 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
39 Win 34–4–1 United States James Dixon TKO 5 (10), 2:49 31 May 1980 United Kingdom Anfield, Liverpool, England
38 Loss 33–4–1 United States Matthew Saad Muhammad TKO 4 (15), 2:27 29 Mar 1980 United States Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, US For WBC and The Ring light-heavyweight titles
37 Loss 33–3–1 United States Matthew Saad Muhammad UD 15 18 Aug 1979 United States Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, US For WBC light-heavyweight title
36 Win 33–2–1 United States Ivy Brown PTS 10 4 Jun 1979 United Kingdom Liverpool, England
35 Draw 32–2–1 United States Jesse Burnett PTS 10 19 Apr 1979 United Kingdom Hilton on Park Lane, London, England
34 Win 32–2 Dominican Republic Leonardo Rodgers KO 7 (10), 1:15 26 Sep 1978 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
33 Loss 31–2 Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Mate Parlov SD 15 17 Jun 1978 Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Stadium, Belgrade, Yugoslavia Lost WBC light-heavyweight title
32 Win 31–1 United States Joe Cokes PTS 10 7 Feb 1978 United Kingdom Michael Sobell Sports Centre, London, England
31 Win 30–1 United States Len Hutchins TKO 3 (15), 1:05 5 Mar 1977 United Kingdom Anfield, Liverpool, England Retained WBC light-heavyweight title
30 Win 29–1 Mexico Yaqui López UD 15 9 Oct 1976 Denmark Forum, Copenhagen, Denmark Retained WBC light-heavyweight title
29 Win 28–1 United States Willie Taylor UD 10 16 Aug 1975 United States Catholic Youth Center, Scranton, Pennsylvania, US
28 Win 27–1 United States Lonnie Bennett TKO 5 (15), 1:10 11 Mar 1975 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Retained WBC light-heavyweight title
27 Win 26–1 Argentina Jorge Ahumada PTS 15 1 Oct 1974 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Won vacant WBC light-heavyweight title
26 Win 25–1 United Kingdom Chris Finnegan TKO 6 (15) 21 May 1974 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Retained European, British, and Commonwealth light-heavyweight titles
25 Win 24–1 Denmark Tom Bogs RTD 6 (15) 12 Mar 1974 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Retained European light-heavyweight title
24 Win 23–1 United Kingdom Les Stevens PTS 10 12 Feb 1974 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
23 Win 22–1 United States Fred Lewis TKO 3 (10) 14 Dec 1973 United Kingdom Anfield, Liverpool, England
22 Win 21–1 The Bahamas Baby Boy Rolle PTS 15 23 Oct 1973 United Kingdom National Ice Centre, Nottingham, England Retained Commonwealth light-heavyweight title
21 Win 20–1 Venezuela Vicente Rondón TKO 9 (10) 10 Sep 1973 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
20 Win 19–1 United Kingdom Chris Finnegan PTS 15 22 May 1973 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Retained European light-heavyweight title;
Won British and Commonwealth light-heavyweight titles
19 Win 18–1 West Germany Rüdiger Schmidtke TKO 12 (15), 2:28 13 Mar 1973 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England Won European light-heavyweight title
18 Win 17–1 United States Terry Daniels TKO 7 (10) 14 Feb 1973 United States Las Vegas Convention Center, Winchester, Nevada, US
17 Win 16–1 United States Dave Matthews PTS 10 15 Jan 1973 United Kingdom Ice Stadium, Nottingham, England
16 Win 15–1 United States Sam McGill TKO 9 (10) 5 Dec 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
15 Win 14–1 United States John Hudgins KO 3 (10), 1:30 14 Nov 1972 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
14 Win 13–1 Canada Bill Drover KO 7 (10), 2:24 31 Oct 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
13 Win 12–1 Hungary Ferenc Kristofcsak TKO 1 (8) 10 Oct 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
12 Loss 11–1 United States Eddie Duncan PTS 10 26 Sep 1972 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
11 Win 11–0 United States Johnny Mac TKO 2 (8) 19 Jul 1972 Republic of Ireland Croke Park, Dublin, Ireland
10 Win 10–0 United Kingdom Billy Aird TKO 8 (8) 6 Jun 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
9 Win 9–0 United States Joe Gholston TKO 5 (8) 25 Apr 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
8 Win 8–0 Puerto Rico Ruben Figueroa KO 2 (8) 28 Mar 1972 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
7 Win 7–0 United States Larry Sykes KO 1 (8) 15 Feb 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
6 Win 6–0 West Germany Wilhelm Janco TKO 1 (8) 25 Jan 1972 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
5 Win 5–0 France Emilio Okee TKO 5 (8) 7 Dec 1971 United Kingdom Royal Albert Hall, London, England
4 Win 4–0 United States Tony Burwell PTS 8 24 Nov 1971 United Kingdom National Ice Centre, Nottingham, England
3 Win 3–0 Canada Frank Bullard TKO 2 (10) 16 Nov 1971 United Kingdom Empire Pool, London, England
2 Win 2–0 France Pierre Minier TKO 5 (8) 8 Nov 1971 United Kingdom Grosvenor House Hotel, London, England
1 Win 1–0 France Okacha Boubekeur KO 1 (8) 18 Oct 1971 United Kingdom Hotel Café Royal, London, England Professional debut

References[edit]

  1. ^ Conteh Stripped of Title. United Press International via Star-News. 19 May 1977
  2. ^ Parlov Decisions Conteh. Daytona Beach Morning Journal. 17 June 1978
  3. ^ Controversial ending to cruiserweight fight. The Montreal Gazette. 10 December 1979
  4. ^ Spizer, Bruce (2005). The Beatles Solo on Apple Records.
  5. ^ John Conteh's appearance on This Is Your Life

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Amateur boxing titles
Previous:
Dave Wallington
ABA middleweight champion
1970
Next:
Alan Minter
Regional boxing titles
Preceded by
Rüdiger Schmidtke
European light-heavyweight champion
13 March 1973 – October 1974
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Domenico Adinolfi
Preceded by
Chris Finnegan
British light-heavyweight champion
22 May 1973 – October 1974
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Johnny Frankham
Commonwealth light-heavyweight champion
22 May 1973 – October 1974
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Steve Aczel
World boxing titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Bob Foster
WBC light-heavyweight champion
1 October 1974 – 17 June 1978
Succeeded by
Mate Parlov