Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Harrison looks for redemption

OLD rivals Audley Harrison and Michael Sprott will fight for the vacant European Heavyweight Championship next month. Ex-Olympic gold medalist Harrison and former British and Commonwealth title holder Sprott will clash for the belt at London’s Alexandra Palace on April 9. The pair have fought before in February 2007 and Harrison will be keen for revenge after he was knocked out in the third round. Harrison, 38, who saved his career by winning Prizefighter Heavyweights 3 in October, had been scheduled to meet Poland’s Albert Sosnowski for the title. However, Sosnowski will now face WBC Champion Vitali Klitschko in May and is set to vacate the European belt to set up the mouth-watering all-British clash. “When Albert pulled out, I told Matchroom I don't care who accepts the fight as there are no easy fights at this level and I’d be ready for anyone,” said Harrison. “To have the opportunity to rectify my loss against Sprott is a blessing that is better than my expectations. “I’m glad I get a chance to correct the mistakes I made in that fight. In 2007, had I beaten Sprott I would’ve fought for the world title that year.
“Now I’ve gone full circle and I will show I’m finally ready to fulfil my destiny and fight for and win a world title. “I have nothing or no one to fear in the division and 2010 will be the rise, redemption and glory of Audley A Force Harrison.”The bout, which will be the main event of Matchroom sport’s next boxing show, gives both fighters one last shot at the big time. Sprott was due to take part in the same Prizefighter tournament as Harrison before he withdrew following the death of his sister. After winning Prizefighter, Harrison donated the trophy to Sprott’s family, although there will be no love lost on April 9 in what will be a make-or-break night in both boxers’ careers. Sprott, 35, returned to the ring after a nine-month absence in stunning fashion on Saturday with a knockout victory inside 60 seconds against German Werner Kreiskoff. “When I suffered the tragic loss of my sister, I had to pull out of the Prizefighter tournament that Audley went on to win,” added Sprott. “I have no doubt in my mind I would’ve won that tournament. I’m confident the result against Audley will be the same as last time.” Matchroom Sport Chairman Barry Hearn was expecting a fantastic contest. He said: “This is a fight the public wants to see between two of Britain’s best heavyweights. “Albert Sosnowski getting a shot at the WBC belt has shown how close these boxers are to fighting for a world title if they win on April 9.”

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