Brian Mitchell (boxer)
|Real name||Brian Mitchell|
|Height||5 ft 6.5 in (1.69 m)|
|Born||30 August 1961|
Johannesburg, South Africa
|Wins by KO||21|
Mitchell turned pro in 1981 and captured the WBA and Lineal Junior Lightweight Title in 1986 with a 10th-round KO over Alfredo Layne. He defended the title a record 12 times, and never lost a title fight. In 1991 he also captured the IBF Junior Lightweight Title with a decision win over Tony Lopez (who he'd previously fought to a draw). He retired after the fight, and came back briefly in 1994 for two local bouts, retiring completely in 1995 with a professional record of 45-1-3, avenging his loss and three draws in rematches and therefore being one of the few champions to beat everyone they faced.
Due to South Africa's apartheid policy during those times, the WBA ruled that Mitchell's title defences were not to be held in South Africa. Mitchell then became a true 'road warrior', defending his title 12 times abroad.
Mitchell was a busy fighter who relentlessly came forward, throwing a high number of punches to his opponent's head and body. Many of Mitchell's defences went the full distance of 15 rounds (7 defences out of 12), but his points victories were usually unanimous and clear-cut. Mitchell always entered his fights in peak physical condition, and it was usually this dedication that earned him his victories.
Mitchell began his career in late 1981, winning his first three fights on points over four rounds in less than two months. By the end of November he had won five times, defeating Simon Zondo and then Mose Mthiyane on fourth-round knockouts.
He began 1982 with a two-round KO of Phanuel Mosoane, but then suffered a setback, losing over 10 rounds to Jacob Morake. It would prove to be the only loss of his career, and left Mitchell's record at six wins and one defeat.
He won his next two fights, one on points and one by knockout, but was then held to a draw over six rounds by Frank Khonkhobe. In October 1982, he met Khonkhobe in a rematch and won on a 10-round decision.
In March 1983 Mitchell won an eight-round decision from Jerome Gumede, earning him a South African junior-lightweight title shot at Chris Whiteboy. He made the most of his opportunity, knocking Whiteboy out in the ninth round to claim the title. Bashew Sibaca lasted 10 rounds as Mitchell defended his crown, but Graham Gcola lasted just two rounds. Mitchell then met Jacob Morake, the only boxer to have beaten him in his young career. He won a points decision over 12 rounds. Fighting Frank Khonkhobe for the third time, Mitchell recorded a points victory. He finished 1983 with a first-round KO win over Blessing Ndlele.
Morake faced Mitchell for the third time in March 1984, and the champion again defended his South African title over 12 rounds. He then disposed of Carlos Miguel Rodriguez in four rounds, and won on points against Iland Matthews over six rounds. Nika Khumalo lasted only two rounds in his title challenge, and Mitchell then outpointed Aladin Stevens over eight rounds. Mitchell opened 1985 with a three-round KO win over Nyungi Mtiya, and then posted two seventh-round knockout wins in succession, defeating Carlos Rodriguez and Vicente Jorge. He improved his record to 25 wins, one loss and one draw when he beat Job Sisanga on points over eight rounds.
In his next bout, in November 1985, he faced Jacob Morake for the fourth time. It proved to be a tragic fight. Mitchell won on a twelfth-round KO, but Morake had absorbed a terrible amount of punishment and later died of head injuries.
Mitchell returned to the ring in March 1986, knocking out Julio Ruiz in six rounds at Sun City. In June of the same year, he defended his South African junior-lightweight title against Bushy Mosoeu, winning on points over 12 rounds.
In September he was given a crack at Alfredo Layne's world junior lightweight title in Sun City, South Africa. Mitchell seized his chance, dropping the Panamanian champion three times in the tenth round to win the title by knock-out. He next travelled to San Juan to tackle Jose Rivera, and after a tough battle emerged with a draw over 15 rounds. Less than two months later, he knocked out Aurelio Benitez in two rounds in a non-title bout. On 31 July, he faced Francisco Fernandez in Panama City and, with his excellent conditioning to the fore, knocked out the challenger in the fourteenth round. Mitchell was next in action in Gravelines, France, where he defeated Daniel Londas on points. He finished the year in Capo d'Orlando, Italy, with a ninth-round knockout of Salvatore Curcetti.
Mitchell took on Jose Rivera for the second time in April 1988 in Madrid. He again defended his title over the distance. In a non-title match he decisioned Danilo Cabrera over 10 rounds, and then outpointed Jim McDonnell over 12 rounds to defend his title for the sixth time.
In 1989 Mitchell headed to Italy, where he knocked out Salvatore Bottiglieri in eight rounds. Fighting in Italy once more, he saw off the challenge of Jackie Beard, and then disposed of his namesake, Irving Mitchell, in seven rounds in the USA. In his final fight of 1989, Mitchell defeated Felipe Orozco on points in a non-title match.
The following year he faced Beard again, winning a 12-round points decision in Italy. He then defeated Frank Mitchell, also over the distance, to maintain his hold on the junior-lightweight title.
In 1991 Mitchell travelled to Sacramento to face local hero Tony "The Tiger" Lopez arguably the toughest foe of his career. In a hometown decision that shocked boxing experts, Lopez managed to draw with Mitchell. The South African boxer was stripped of his WBA crown for facing Lopez for the IBF title, and suddenly he found himself without a world title for the first time since 1986. However, he again faced Lopez in Sacramento in September, and on that occasion made sure of victory with a convincing points win, claiming the IBF title in the process.
Mitchell retired from boxing after that fight, but came out of retirement for two more victories in 1994 and 1995 before permanently retiring from the ring.
He finished his career with 45 wins, a solitary loss and three draws. His 12 successful defences of the junior–lightweight title was only eclipsed by his countryman Vuyanyi "the beast" Bungu who achieved the record of thirteen successful defences.
In rankings based on the formula of "the man who beat the man", Mitchell was rated the world's best junior-lightweight boxer from 1986 to his retirement in 1991. He proved his toughness by making 12 title defences on the road, and he proved his ability time after time when fighting for the world title.
Many South Africans would consider him the country's greatest ever pugilist. Today, he is one of South Africa's foremost boxing trainers.
Mitchell was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2009, and notwithstanding his exit from the amateur ranks in the early 80's, he was awarded honorary Springbok colours at a box–and-dine evening held at the Johannesburg City Hall in April 1989.
Professional boxing recordEdit
|49 fights||45 wins||1 loss|
|49||Win||45–1–3||Silverio Flores||UD||10||1 Apr 1995||Superbowl, Sun City, South Africa|
|48||Win||44–1–3||Mike Evgen||RTD||6 (10)||26 Nov 1994||Superbowl, Sun City, South Africa|
|47||Win||43–1–3||Tony Lopez||UD||12||13 Sep 1991||ARCO Arena, Sacramento, California, U.S.||Won IBF super-featherweight title|
|46||Draw||42–1–3||Tony Lopez||SD||12||15 Mar 1991||ARCO Arena, Sacramento, California, U.S.||Retained WBA super-featherweight title;|
For IBF super-featherweight title
|45||Win||42–1–2||Frankie Mitchell||UD||12||29 Sep 1990||Palazzetto del Ghiaccio, Aosta, Italy||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|44||Win||41–1–2||Jackie Beard||UD||12||14 Mar 1990||Palazzetto dello Sport, Grosseto, Italy||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|43||Win||40–1–2||Felipe Orazco||SD||10||11 Nov 1989||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|42||Win||39–1–2||Irving Mitchell||TKO||7 (12)||28 Sep 1989||Central Maine Civic Center, Lewiston, Maine, U.S.||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|41||Win||38–1–2||Jackie Beard||TD||9 (12)||2 Jul 1989||Stadio Ezio Scida, Crotone, Italy||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|40||Win||37–1–2||Salvatore Bottiglieri||TKO||8 (12)||11 Feb 1989||Palasport Guiseppi Valencia, Messina, Italy||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|39||Win||36–1–2||Jim McDonnell||UD||12||2 Nov 1988||Elephant & Castle Centre, London, United Kingdom||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|38||Win||35–1–2||Danilo Cabrera||UD||10||4 Jun 1988||Standard Bank Arena, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|37||Win||34–1–2||Jose Rivera||UD||12||26 Apr 1988||Scalia Melia Castilla, Madrid, Spain||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|36||Win||33–1–2||Salvatore Curcetti||RTD||8 (12)||19 Dec 1987||Palazzo Dello Sport, Messina, Italy||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|35||Win||32–1–2||Daniel Londas||UD||15||3 Oct 1987||L'Espace International, Gravelines, France||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|34||Win||31–1–2||Francisco Fernandez||TKO||14 (15)||31 Jul 1987||Gimnasio Nuevo Panama, Panama City, Panama||Retained WBA super-featherweight title|
|33||Win||30–1–2||Aurelio Benitez||TKO||2 (10)||16 May 1987||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|32||Draw||29–1–2||Jose Rivera||MD||15||27 Mar 1987||Roberto Clemente Coliseum, San Juan, Puerto Rico||Retained WBA and The Ring super-featherweight titles|
|31||Win||29–1–1||Alfredo Layne||TKO||10 (15)||27 Sep 1986||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana||Won WBA and The Ring super-featherweight titles|
|30||Win||28–1–1||Bushy Mosoeu||UD||12||14 Jun 1986||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|29||Win||27–1–1||Julio Pastor Ruiz||KO||6 (10)||1 Mar 1986||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|28||Win||26–1–1||Jacob Morake||TKO||12 (12)||2 Nov 1985||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
Morake died of head injuries
|27||Win||25–1–1||Job Sisanga||PTS||8||27 Jul 1985||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|26||Win||24–1–1||Vincente Jorge||TKO||7 (10)||27 Apr 1985||Portuguese Hall, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|25||Win||23–1–1||Carlos Rodriguez||RTD||6 (8)||30 Mar 1985||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|24||Win||22–1–1||Nyingi Mtya||TKO||3 (12)||11 Feb 1985||Vosloorus Civic Centre, Boksburg, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|23||Win||21–1–1||Aladin Stevens||PTS||8||1 Dec 1984||Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana|
|22||Win||20–1–1||Nika Khumalo||TKO||2 (12)||2 Aug 1984||Good Hope Centre, Cape Town, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|21||Win||19–1–1||Iland Mathews||PTS||6||16 Apr 1984||Joekies Ice Rink, Welkom, South Africa|
|20||Win||18–1–1||Carlos Miguel||TKO||4 (10)||31 Mar 1984||Ellis Park Tennis Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|19||Win||17–1–1||Jacob Morake||UD||12||2 Mar 1984||Kwa-Thema Civic Centre, Springs, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|18||Win||16–1–1||Blessing Ndlela||TKO||1 (8)||19 Dec 1983||West Ridge Park Tennis Stadium, Durban, South Africa|
|17||Win||15–1–1||Frank Khonkhobe||UD||12||21 Nov 1983||Wembley Sports Pavilion, Johannesburg, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|16||Win||14–1–1||Jacob Morake||SD||12||6 Aug 1983||Wembley Sports Pavilion, Johannesburg, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|15||Win||13–1–1||Graham Gola||KO||2 (12)||27 Jun 1983||Wembley Sports Pavilion, Johannesburg, South Africa||Retained South African super-featherweight title|
|14||Win||12–1–1||Bashew Sibaca||PTS||10||2 May 1983||West Ridge Park Tennis Stadium, Durban, South Africa|
|13||Win||11–1–1||Chris Whiteboy||TKO||9 (12)||9 Apr 1983||Oppenheimer Stadium, Orkney, South Africa||Won South African super-featherweight title|
|12||Win||10–1–1||Jerome Gumede||PTS||8||14 Mar 1983||West Ridge Park Tennis Stadium, Durban, South Africa|
|11||Win||9–1–1||Frank Khonkhobe||SD||10||15 Oct 1982||Diepkloof Community Hall, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|10||Draw||8–1–1||Frank Khonkhobe||PTS||6||30 Jul 1982||Mphatlalatsane Amphitheatre, Sebokeng, South Africa|
|9||Win||8–1||Moses Sithebe||TKO||5 (6)||26 Jun 1982||Oppenheimer Stadium, Orkney South Africa|
|8||Win||7–1||Joseph Tsotetsi||PTS||6||17 May 1982||Jack Eustace Hall, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|7||Loss||6–1||Jacob Morake||UD||10||1 May 1982||Kwa-Thema Civic Centre, Springs, South Africa||For Transvaal super-featherweight title|
|6||Win||6–0||Phanuel Mosoane||TKO||2 (6)||6 Feb 1982||Rand Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|5||Win||5–0||Moses Mthiyane||TKO||4 (6)||30 Nov 1981||West Ridge Park Tennis Stadium, Durban, South Africa|
|4||Win||4–0||Simon Zondo||TKO||4 (6)||31 Oct 1981||Ellis Park Tennis Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|3||Win||3–0||Tammy Mayisela||PTS||4||3 Oct 1981||Portuguese Hall, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|2||Win||2–0||Bushy Mosoeu||PTS||4||19 Sep 1981||Wembley Sports Pavilion, Johannesburg, South Africa|
|1||Win||1–0||Joseph Moneoane||PTS||4||15 Aug 1981||Ellis Park Tennis Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa|