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Boxer 'Razor' Ruddock eyes comeback at 48, says it is not for money

The man who fought Mike Tyson with a broken jaw wants to clamber into the ring and fancies his chances. Good for him.

Legendary referee Mills Lane intervenes a mid-round conferring session between Tyson and Ruddock.
Legendary referee Mills Lane intervenes a mid-round conferring session between Tyson and Ruddock.
Image: (AP Photo/Bob Galbraith)

ON THIS SIDE of the Atlantic, Donovan ‘Razor’ Ruddock is famous for three things.

1. Former Liverpool and West Ham defender, and irritant to Eric Cantona, Neil Ruddock was nicknamed Razor after the Canadian boxer.

2. In March 1991 he signed up to fight the greatest heavyweight boxer of his generation, Mike Tyson.

3. Three months later, Ruddock donned his boxing shorts and did it all over again.

Now the 48-year-old may be about to gain a different sort of notoriety by stepping back into the ring 11 years after he retired.

Broken jaw

Ruddock faced Tyson in a bout that would determine the number one contender for a heavyweight title fight with Evander Holyfield.

‘Iron Mike’, who had been defeated by James ‘Buster’ Douglas for the belt in 1990, had renewed focus as he knocked Ruddock down three times and won the fight in seven rounds.

There was plenty of talk between both camps after the fight and Tyson famously said ‘I’m going to make you my girlfriend on June 28′ to Ruddock.

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A rematch was scheduled for June 1991 and Ruddock lost again but over 12 rounds and after suffering a broken jaw in the opening exchanges.

The two other stand-out fights in his boxing career also ended in defeat, to Lennox Lewis and Tommy Morrison, the man who gave Sylvester Stallone an acting run for his money in Rocky V.

Comeback

Ruddock says he made the decision to return to professional boxing after impressing himself in a Jamaican training camp. He said:

I got in such shape that I realized I wasn’t in shape when I was fighting Tyson and all those guys. I’m in the best shape of my life. I’m stronger, I’m faster.

Ruddock, who is weighing in at 215 pounds, has to find an opponent and get licensed by an athletic commission.

“I’m looking for a fight like yesterday,” he added. ”I’m not doing this for money, I’m doing this because I want to do it.”

First Canada then, the world

Ruddock, possibly looking at the less than classy actions of British boxers David Haye and Dereck Chisora, says he is ‘very disappointed in the state of the heavyweight division right now’.

He has set his sets on a bout with Canadian champion Neven Pajkic before focusing on world domination. He admitted, though, that his opening fight will be make or break.

He said, “If I go in there and I lose one fight, by any means, then I realize I’m off, I’m wrong and I’m going to give it a walk.”

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