Starie faced with Beyer - and bias

BOXING: David Starie has got to be so far ahead of Markus Beyer in their world title fight that there can be no question of home bias.So said the British and Commonwealth super-middleweight champion's manager, Gordon Holmes, today ahead of the big showdown in Beyer's homeland on Saturday week.

By Dave Allard

BOXING

DAVID Starie has got to be so far ahead of Markus Beyer in their world title fight that there can be no question of home bias.

So said the British and Commonwealth super-middleweight champion's manager, Gordon Holmes, today ahead of the big showdown in Beyer's homeland on Saturday week.


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The former Hurstlea-Kerridge club amateur takes on Beyer in Leipzig, Germany, in what is an interim WBC world crown contest.

Reigning champion Eric Lucas, of Canada, has been out of action for a long time due to illness and the winner will have to fight him if and when he becomes fully fit.

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Holmes said: "We've taken this fight with Beyer at quite short notice and that is not ideal. It would have been better had it been in Britain or a neutral country. But the German promoters have won the purse and it goes ahead out there.

"David is ready for it, there is no doubt that. We know there will be talk of a home bias. It has to be said that the three judges will all be neutral and so will the referee. So there should be no problems on that score, but there is always a certain amount of thinking that the visiting fighter has to work that bit harder to succeed.

"David has just got to make sure he is sufficiently ahead to leave no doubt in the mind of anyone who the winner is or, even better still, stop it inside the distance."

Starie and his training team, headed by Holmes, fly to Leipzig next Monday.

"By that time the vast bulk of the heavy training will be done," said Holmes. "But we will have to go through some public training sessions and there are press conferences arranged.

"David is 28 now. I think he's at his peak and is ready to take the world stage by storm. He can beat Beyer and I'm confident that he will account for Lucas too, if that fight eventually takes place."

Beyer, 32, had held the WBC crown before, beating Britain's Ritchie Woodhall. He later lost it to another British fighter, Glen Catley. Starie has had one previous world title fight, two years ago when he challenged WBO title holder Joe Calzaghe of Wales in Manchester and lost on points over 12 rounds.

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