I READ with great interest your article (October 18) on Roman Greenberg (no relation). I met up with him a number of times and went to many of his fights, and he came to my house for dinner and met my family. Make no mistake, Roman wasn’t a good prospect, he was a phenomenal prospect and a lovely fellow. The first time I saw him was when Israel sent an amateur boxing team to England to fight an England team for charity. It was held, as I recall, at the Grosvenor Hotel in London. With the score in matches standing at 5-4 to Israel, Roman had to face off in the last bout of the evening against the thenreigning ABA heavyweight champion – a very experienced older guy whose name I cannot recall. Roman had just come out of the Juniors. The ABA champion was expected to win easily. However, Roman was like a young Cassius Clay, dancing around and punching his opponent at will, knocking him down twice and being robbed quite blatantly of the decision. By a quirk of coincidence, a few days later I went on a flight to Israel and there was Roman with his trainer, both still fuming at how they’d been robbed. I’ve been an avid follower of boxing for over 60 years now, and I’ve really only ever been excited by two prospects in that time. One was Naseem Hamed and the other was Roman. It’s a real shame that Roman never fulfilled the potential that he had. Stuart Greenberg
I THINK that amid the promising heavyweights who ultimately fell short of expectations (October 18 issue), Andrew Golota must surely be ranked in the top three. Golota had both the physical attributes and the technique to become a great, but he didn’t have the mental strength. He was beating a prime Riddick Bowe to a pulp twice, before being disqualified for low blows both times. This, in my opinion, was the beginning of the end for him, as he never recovered from the accusations of being sickminded. I also remember how Golota was the first to expose the weaknesses of Michael Grant, before inexplicably quitting during a fight he could still win. Of course, Grant was crushed by Lennox Lewis later on. Massimo Ricci
RADIO OVER PPV
MAY I add my support to Dermot Bolger’s excellent Letter of the Week in the October 4 issue. As I pay an annual subscription to both Sky and BT Sport, I decided to opt out of the pay-per-view offering of the George Groves-callum Smith match, as it came so soon after the Anthony Joshua-alexander Povetkin PPV. Fight fans’ pockets are not bottomless. I listened to the TALKSPORT radio commentary provided by John Rawling and Glenn Mccrory instead. Their superb coverage painted a picture that, for me, successfully replaced the live TV show. And, of course, it was entirely free. David Hibbert
CAUSE FOR CONCERN? THE story of Anthony Joshua is well documented – how he took up boxing late, won Olympic gold, secured a world heavyweight title ahead of schedule when an opening came up against Charles Martin etc.
I thought that his development was on track when watching him outbox Joseph Parker with his jab.
However, I was disturbed to see him make himself an easy target for the dangerous Alexander Povetkin in the early rounds. The very best champions make their defence impregnable when at the top of their game. Perhaps there is some cause for concern for Joshua in this sense. Olugbenga Rotimi
WHAT WENT WRONG: Golota should have had the attributes to do something special