Enzo Maccarinelli will speak to his wife as the former world champion decides if he is to quit boxing after suffering a sickening, brutal knockout.
Unbeaten Alexander Frenkel dethroned the European cruiserweight champion in emphatic fashion on Saturday. Maccarinelli required treatment from ringside medics and needed oxygen as he was on the canvas for five minutes before leaving the ring.
“Maybe I’ll have an other crack,” he said. “But I’ll to speak to my wife.”
The Welshman has lost four of his last eight bouts, and has ruled out retirement twice previously following heavy KO’s. The demise of Maccarinelli began in March 2008 when he lost his WBO title in a unification showdown with then WBC/WBA champ David Haye. Maccarinelli was stopped inside two rounds in the clash at London’s O2 Arena.
The Swansea showman returned but was again fighting for his professional life after his shock third round knockout by Russian Denis Lebedev in July 2009 in what he had described as his “last-chance saloon”.
Maccarinelli fought on, and shocked the boxing world, by claiming the European crown from Alexander Kotlobay in a first-round KO in Kotlobay’s home-town of St Petersburg in April.
But the Welshman’s latest career blow from Ukrainian Frenkel has even led to his promoter Frank Warren hinting that Maccarinelli’s career his over.
“It was a shame for Enzo to go out like that after all he’s done.” said Warren.
Warren has offered Maccarinelli the opportunity to join him in the promotion ranks and help co-promote fights in his native Wales.
But the fighter, one of 10 world champions to come from Wales, is currently mulling over whether he has a future in competing rather than promoting.
Maccarinelli had picked himself up from a Frenkel knock-down in the seventh before being sent crashing back to the canvas three punches later to end the fight.
“They say boxing is a man’s game and unfortunately that’s the sport I’m in,” said Maccarinelli.
“I’m disappointed. I’ll also have a chat with Frank and see where we go from there. But I’ve had a good career and I’m proud of it.”
Former Foe Haye Upset at defeat
WBA world heavyweight champion David Haye has commended former cruiserweight rival Enzo Maccarinelli for the heart shown during Saturday’s seventh round KO loss to Frenkel, but admitted the manner of defeat “upset” him. European cruiserweight champion Maccarinelli was ahead on the scorecards when entering the seventh round of his first title defence, but a vicious left-hook from Frenkel ended both the Swansea man’s title reign and his dream of winning back his WBO world title.
Haye snatched Maccarinelli’s WBO strap from him in 2008, and in the space of merely two-and-a-half years, has watched the fortunes of both men differ.
“I found it extremely upsetting and sobering to watch Enzo lose like that on Saturday,” admitted Haye, present at ringside in Birmingham. “Enzo is one of boxing’s true gentlemen and he’d shown a tremendous amount of guts and heart to rebound from defeat and win the European belt. I was desperate for him to win back his old world title, but it just wasn’t meant to be.
“I actually saw Enzo leave in the ambulance after the show on Saturday had ended, and it was quite an emotional sight. It was only two years ago that Enzo and I were squaring off in the biggest all-British unification match in years. We were both 27 at the time and we both had the world at our feet. I was the number one cruiserweight in the world, Enzo was number two, and we both had dreams of unifying the division.
“It just goes to show what a fickle and unfair sport this can be sometimes.”
Since losing to Haye, Maccarinelli has lost a further three cruiserweight bouts, including Saturday’s shocking setback against Frenkel. The proud Welshman was stopped in all three of those subsequent defeats, and former foe Haye has urged Maccarinelli to think wisely about his reasons for still being involved in the sport.
“It’s not for me to say whether Enzo should retire or not, but he needs to be surrounded by the right kind of people and he needs to listen to the right kind of advice,” said Haye.
“I was disgusted with the way the referee and Enzo’s own corner allowed him to continue to fight on following the first knockdown on Saturday. He was hit by a huge left-hook, went down as though he’d been knocked clean out, and then somehow bravely pulled himself to his feet.
“Anybody who knows boxing – and anybody who knows Enzo – would have been aware that the fight should have been stopped immediately. He was in a far worse state following that first knockdown on Saturday than he was when I stopped him.
“However, the referee and corner stupidly allowed him to continue and we all saw what happened next. What were these people expecting Enzo to do at that stage? He was never going to turn things around in the state he was in. Everybody at ringside was shouting for the fight to be stopped, as we all knew what was about to happen.
“His corner need to take a long, hard look at themselves and question why they let him continue trying to fight beyond that first knockdown. Boxers rely on their cornermen for protection and, unfortunately, Enzo’s let him down badly on Saturday. I only hope the people around him have his best interests at heart and now guide him towards the correct decision going forward.”