Huck-Arslan rematch set for Sept. 14
Cruiserweight titlist Marco Huck and former titleholder Firat Arslan have a little unfinished business, so they will meet in a rematch on Sept. 14 at Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle in Stuttgart, Germany, the fighers' promoter announced Thursday.
"This is one of the fights that was right at the top of every boxing fan's wish list," said Sauerland Event managing director Frederick Ness. "Their first bout was full of drama and excitement. That is why I cannot wait for Sept. 14."
Huck and Arslan first met on Nov. 3, and in an all-action fight, Huck won a highly competitive and disputed unanimous decision on scores of 117-111, 115-113 and 115-113. It was such a good fight, and many thought that Arslan had done enough to win, that there were was immediate talk of a rematch.
Rafael's Boxing Blog
Get the latest scoop and analysis on the world of boxing from ESPN.com's Dan Rafael in his blog.
"I still believe that I won our first fight," said Arslan, 42, of Germany. "I should be the world champion. I won't let my second chance to capture the crown just slip away. This is a fight right on my own home turf."
Arslan called for a rematch right after the fight, but Huck first had a mandatory defense to make against then-interim titleholder Ola Afolabi.
Huck (36-2-1, 25 KOs), 28, who was born in Serbia but lives in Germany, went on to fight Afolabi for the third time on June 8 and won a majority decision. Arslan (33-6-2, 21 KOs) also had an interim fight, rolling to a lopsided 10-round decision against Varol Vekiloglu on April 27.
Huck, who will be making the 12th defense of his world title, said he had no problem giving Arslan a rematch following the Afolabi bout.
"I understand that Firat is disappointed [about the result of the November bout]," Huck said. "I was in the same position after I fought Alexander Povetkin [in a controversial loss in a heavyweight title challenge in February 2012]. I saw myself as the winner in that matchup, but the judges didn't. That is exactly why I always said that I would give Firat a rematch even if he wasn't my mandatory challenger."
Arslan won a version of the cruiserweight title by outpointing Virgil Hill in November 2007 and made one defense, a decision win against Darnell "Ding-A-Ling Man" Wilson in May 2008, before losing the belt by 10th-round knockout to Guillermo Jones in September 2008.
MORE BOXING HEADLINES
- With Klitschko in sight, Fury to face Hammer
- Ali fighting off pneumonia, 'vastly improved'
- Caballero to defend vs. Guevara on Feb. 27
- Champion trainer Sdunek dies of heart attack