Sporting Life

Mike Tyson's exhibition bout is sport without meaning

Roy Jones Jr. and Mike Tyson (right) celebrate their split draw during their match at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Nov 28, 2020. PHOTO: AFP
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Ever felt the urge to throw a punch? At the mirror, in the air, at a friend in jest, in your dreams? It's a visceral, primitive, human instinct that beckons a lot of us. The legendary gymnast Olga Korbut, all of 1.52m, bounded into the ring once for an exhibition fight as did the reed-thin basketball player Manute Bol, a mere 2.31m. No, they did not fight each other.

Even comedian Ricky Gervais has let go a few jabs in the ring and it's like everyone needs to access their inner Ali. The writer George Plimpton once went three rounds with light-heavyweight champion Archie Moore with trumpeter Miles Davis in attendance. A bloody music followed. Plimpton got a broken nose but a great story.

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