Fight of Contrasts:
Vitali Klitschko vs. Mario Schiesser
European Heavyweight Championship:
On 24th October 1998 in the Alsterdorfer Sporthalle in Hamburg

HAMBURG, 13th October 1998. When the German based Ukrainian Vitali Klitschko and Berlin's Mario Schiesser will step into the ring in a contest for the vacant European heavyweight title, it will be a fight of contrasts.

For the determined 27 year old Vitali Klitschko it will be the first big test in his professional career, that lasts two years now, and the chance to become the first European heavyweight champion out of the Ukraine. Keeping his eyes on the European crown, the older Klitschko brother already vacated his WBO-Intercontinental title, that he was holding since May of this year.

For the 34 year old experienced warrior Mario Schiesser - a two-time German champion and two-time International German champion - the fight against Vitali Klitschko will be his last chance to gain international recognition.

Even though the size, the youth and the impressive punching power of Vitali Klitschko (21 Fights, 21 Wins, 21 KOs) seemingly makes the Ukrainian the clear favorite, nobody should write Mario Schiesser off quickly. Schiesser (40 Fights, 36 Wins, 4 Losses, 24 KOs) was showing up in the run-up to the fight confident of victory for good reason. Only three months ago the man from Berlin belied all skeptics, when he knocked out and dethroned the undefeated and favored German champion Kim

Should Mario Schiesser also be able to defeat the seemingly invincible Vitali Klitschko, he would become the first European champion out of Germany in 26 years. In those days Hamburg's Jürgen Blin outpointed José Urtain from Spain over 15 rounds.

In the long history of European boxing nine German heavyweights were able to win the highest crown of Europe since 1913 - among them German boxing legend Max Schmeling. Also the longest reigning European heavyweight champion was a German: Karl Mildenberger, now 60 years old, was holding the European crown for almost four years from October 1962 to September 1968.

In his first try to win the European title, though, Mario Schiesser, owner of a pub in Berlin, failed. In July 1994 the Brit Henry Akinwande, who later became the WBO world heavyweight champion, knocked him out in the seventh round.

Fabian Weber
International Press Spokesman
Universum Box-Promotion GmbH

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