Kali Meehan ices Michael Sprott, wins inaugural Super 8

TEN years earlier, Kali Meehan was arguably robbed of the heavyweight championship by the slightest of margins.

Overnight, Meehan was presented with his biggest opportunity since – a $200,000 grand prize – and this time around he made it count. Meehan won the inaugural Super 8 heavyweight tournament, winning three fights which culminated in a first-round knockout over Michael Sprott.

In addition to winning the $200,000 winners cheque, Meehan (now 41-5, 32 KOs) also picked up a $10,000 bonus for scoring a knockout in the final as well as an additional $5,000 for it taking place in the opening round.

Meehan, 44, returning after a two year hiatus since his stoppage loss to Travis Walker, looked comfortable almost immediately as he appeared to be better suited to the shorter distance fights. Meehan was able to effectively control the tempo and pace of each fight, using his towering height and reach advantage in his favour.

In his first fight of the tournament, Meehan edged Australian heavyweight champion Hunter Sam in a competitive fight that in reality, could’ve gone either way. However, Meehan restricted Sam’s movement and because of this, was able to outland the Australian.

Meehan later met a confident Brice Ritani-Coe, who was on a high coming off his impressive upset of American Alonzo Butler. Despite his confidence, Ritani-Coe arguably gave Meehan his easiest fight of the night, in fairness to Ritani-Coe, he appeared to be worse off physically in comparison to Meehan due to his harder first-round fight.

“When this concept came up at first I said, no, I don’t want to do it.” said Meehan post-fight after his third win. “Then I thought it was in my hometown and I wanted to show Auckland what I could do. I’m just pleased I was able to do that in front of some old friends and family.”

When quizzed about his future in the sport, a jovial Meehan remained relatively tight-lipped.

“I never say anything about that straight after a fight because your mind is still fighting and you will fight anyone,” he explained. “So I will wait a week or so and see how I feel.”

In spite of his age, a fit and motivated Kali Meehan would be a welcome addition to a thriving domestic heavyweight scene in Australia, which already boasts reigning Commonwealth champion Lucas Browne as well as former title challenger Alex Leapai as well as Solomon Haumono and Bowie Tupou.

Antz Nansen (NZ) UD 3 Hasim Rahman (US)
Brice Ritani-Coe (NZ) SD 3 Alonzo Butler (US)
Kali Meehan (AUS) SD 3 Hunter Sam (AUS)
Michael Sprott (ENG) MD 3 Martin Rogan (IRE)


Michael Sprott (ENG) UD 3 Antz Nansen (NZ)
Kali Meehan (AUS) UD 3 Brice Ritani-Coe (NZ)

Kali Meehan KO 1 Michael Sprott


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