1980sBoxingDr. Ferdie PachecoHeavyweight BoxingHeavyweight Boxing ChampionsMarv AlbertNBCSportsWorld

Boxing – 1981 – 10 Round Heavyweight Bout – Gerrie Coetzee vs Renaldo Snipes


This 1981 10 round heavyweight boxing match between Gerrie Coetzee vs Renaldo Snipes…..freatured two more “really good” heavyweight boxers during the golden age of boxing (1964 – 1995)….who like so many others….Earnie Shavers, Jimmie Ellis, Jimmy Young, Tim Witherspoon, Michael Dokes, James Tillis, Greg Page et al…..that are so quickly being forgotten…..and these guys deserve their place in history

Gerrie Coetzee is a South African former professional boxer who competed from 1974 to 1986 in the heavyweight division….who in 1993 and 1997….became the first boxer from the African continent ever to fight for, and win, a world heavyweight championship….having held the WBA title from 1983 to 1984. One of Coetzee’s nicknames, “The Bionic Hand”, came about because of persistent troubles with his right hand….which required the insertion of several corrective items during three surgeries, so his Afrikaans nickname was “Seer Handjies” or “Little Sore Hands”….who happened to be given the name by fellow South African boxing great Kallie Knoetze.

Less than 5 months after the loss to Mike Weaver for the vacant WBA title in October 1980….Coetzee returned to the ring and beat fringe contender George Chaplin before facing Renaldo Snipes….who was definitely title contender quality as seen in this video herewith….as Coetzee dropped Snipes early and seemed to dominate the action….however, the fight was scored by rounds and not on points….which meant a round won widely with knockdowns was no more valued than a round lost narrowly….which proved to be true as “Little Sore Hands”  lost a ten-round decision that was deemed one of the worst judges decisions of the decade.

Nicknamed “Mister” Snipes….Renaldo Snipes started off his career successfully with a first-round knockout of Carl Halliburton…..in a fight that was on the same card that future heavyweight contender James Tillis made his debut on….then 21 more wins followed Mister Snipes and he challenged world heavyweight champion Larry Holmes for the title November 6, 1981 in Pittsburgh….when Snipes knocked down the champion in the seventh round….however Holmes got up and Snipes was stopped in Round 11. Snipes complained that Holmes was the beneficiary of a long count….however, the films show that the claim is exaggerated….as Holmes rose at the count of 4 and though badly hurt, fought off the charging Snipes for the remainder of the round. Snipes fought a string of world-class fighters after the Holmes bout….typically in contests that mostly descended into wildly entertaining brawls….as he amassed a record of 39 wins (22 by knockout), 8 losses, and 1 draw….in a career that included fights with such notable heavyweight boxers as Trevor Berbick, Tim Witherspoon, Greg Page, Eddie Mustafa Muhammad, Alfredo Evangelista, South African puncherJohnny DuPlooy and many more….to include this one seen below with Gerri Coetzee.

This is a great heavyweight fight between two really outstanding boxers…..that was “too close to call” by all standards….while featuring two boxers that had they been fighting in any other era other than the golden era of boxing….might have made a name for themselves much more that the names that are remembered today…..for it is this lil ole chiweenie Sportsphile’s opinion that Gerri Coetzee and Mister Snipes just might have given the Floyd Pattersons’ and Igemar Johannsens’ of the boxing history world, a real run for their money

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