Vitali Klitschko blasts out Kennedy

Another quick Klitsch-KO in his first professional fight in the USA

MIAMI, FL, 11th August 1998.
Following the example of his brother the undefeated Ukrainian heavyweight Vitali Klitschko had his first fight on American television on Tuesday. He knocked out Jamaican Ricardo Kennedy in the opening round on an event of Mike Acri Boxing Promotions in Miami, Florida.

His younger brother Wladimir Klitschko already had his American debut last Thursday, stopping Carlos Monroe in the sixth round on a fight card of Top Rank Promotions in Marksville, Louisiana.

Ricardo Kennedy, the opponent of the 27 year old Vitali Klitschko, was a late replacement for Tony Tubbs, who was scheduled to face Klitschko since several weeks. But only three days before the event in Miami the local boxing commission banned Tony Tubbs, because he hadn’t paid a conventional fine.

In front of 4000 high-spirited fans in a sold out arena Vitali Kitschko (239 pounds / 108,4 kg) caused a quick end to his first professional fight in "the promised land". When the powerful 6 feet 8 Ukrainian was pummeling Kennedy (226 pounds / 102,5 kg) on the ropes, Klitschko hit the side of the Jamaican's head with a right hand. As if Klitschko's punch had propelled Kennedy, he walked two steps forward. Vitali just moved slightly to the side and threw a brutal left hook which floored Kennedy. The Jamaican was able to get up on wobbly knees, but the referee wisely decided to stop the fight.

„I’m happy that I was successful in my first fight in America. Wladimir and me were dreaming of coming to the US since we turned pro“, the victorious Vitali stated, who is managed by Germany’s Universum Box-Promotion.

Klitschko’s undefeated record improved to 21-0 (21 KO’s). Kennedy dropped to 14-7-1 (14 KO’s).

In some of his recent fights Vitali Klitschko was facing former opponents of German Axel Schulz - an intentional strategic move by his promotor Klaus-Peter Kohl. In contrast to Schulz, who could only win boring decisions against the likes of José Ribalta and Julius Francis, Vitali could knock out both fighters impressively in only two rounds.

„It will not be the last time that we have come to America with our fighters“, promotor Klaus-Peter Kohl promises. „Now every boxing fan in the US could see that both Klitschko brothers have the potential to become heavyweight champion of the world. We are looking forward to returning to the US soon.“

"Look out Americans", warns Vitali Klitschko with a grin one last time, before he enters the airplane that will bring him on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, back to the European continent. "We’ll be back!"

Fabian Weber Universum Box-Promotion

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