The O2 World Stadium in Berlin, Germany will be the site for a clash between two home towners on Aug. 25 when Robert Stieglitz will be attempting to defend the WBO version of the Super Middleweight Championship against Arthur Abraham. Though both boxers fight out of Germany, Stieglitz was born in Russia and Abraham originally hails from Armenia.
Stieglitz was originally scheduled to defend his belt against Mikkel Kessler of Denmark, but it was called off. He was then supposed to step into the ring with British champion George Groves, and that was scrapped as well. Former IBF middleweight king Abraham gladly stepped up to take on Stieglitz in a crossroads fight for him. Abraham is still a good boxer with a dangerous punch, but he’s fallen down the rankings since the ill-fated Super Six Tournament. For Stieglitz, it’ll actually mean a step up in class.
The 32-year-old Abraham will be taking a 34-3 record into the ring with him along with 27 KOS and he’s basically in an all or nothing jam here as a loss would be a huge setback at this stage of his career. He admitted that the pressure’s on him and he has to deal with it, but anything other than a victory will be unacceptable. He’s not very tall at all for the weight division at just 5-foot-9 with a 72-inch reach. He’s shown a lot of power and heart in the past and beat Edison Miranda with a broken jaw back in 2006.
Abraham’s fought some top boxers since turning pro in 2003, including Howard Eastman, Kingsley Ikeke, Shannon Taylor, Kofi Jantuah, Sebastien Demers, Raul Marquez, Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Carl Froch, and Andre Ward. His losses came against Dirrell, Froch, and Ward, all in the Super Six Tournament. He was disqualified in the 11th round against Dirrell for hitting him while he was down and lost 12-round unanimous decisions to Froch and Ward. He’s won two fights since then earlier in the year over mediocre opponents.
Abraham won the IBF title in 2005 with a fifth-round KO over Ikeke and defended it 10 times. He has a straightforward boxing style that’s pretty easy to predict, but you still have to be able to take his power to beat him. He isn’t active enough though if he can’t find an opening, meaning he’ll wait for a chance to take a shot instead of creating an opening.
Stieglitz is a couple of years younger than the challenger at 30, and is a couple of inches taller at 5-foot-11. He’s got a fine record of 42-2 with 23 KOs. He turned pro in 2004 and won his title in 2009 when he beat Karoly Balzsay by an 11th-round TKO. He’s fought a lot of journeymen over the years and when he did face better opposition in Alejandro Berrio in 2007 and Librado Andrade in 2008 he was knocked out in the third and eighth rounds respectively. He fought in January and May of this year with both being 12-round unanimous decisions.
The Russian is an above average boxer, but isn’t really exceptional in any particular department. He has a boxer’s chance against Abraham, but his past losses show that he might not have the greatest chin. And the past could be a key in this fight. Stieglitz isn’t really in the same class as many of Abraham’s opponents. If Abraham hasn’t taken a step backward in the skill and heart departments then he should take this bout by a stoppage in the second half. Check out our past boxing predictions.
Online bookie 5dimes.eu has Abraham as the favourite at -300 with Stieglitz at +250. The odds of the bout going under 10.5 rounds are +180 and are -260 for it to go over 10.5 rounds. Bet now at 5Dimes.eu – remember to use 5Dimes marketing code AF0002879 to get up to $520 in bonus dollars.
Written by: Ian Palmer