In our latest look at classic UK fights to catch up on in the long days of lockdown, we look at a thriller from 2003.
Michael Brodie v Injin Chi – 18th October 2003, Manchester Arena – Vacant WBC Featherweight Title
October 2003 saw an unexpected classic in Manchester, as a local favourite went up against a dangerous visitor for the vacant WBC Featherweight crown.
Manchester born and bred, Michael Brodie had domestically cleaned up, and a world title shot was the logical next step for him.
After turning over in 1994, Brodie had captured British, Commonwealth and European belts at Super-Bantamweight and worked his way into a shot at the WBC title September 2000.
The famous green belt had been made vacant by the Mexican monster, Erik Morales, and Brodie was made co-challenger for the vacant strap alongside the Californian, WIllie Jorrin.
Jorrin was unbeaten in 26 fights, and had to travel to Brodie’s Manchester backyard for the fight. Sadly for Brodie though, home advantage counted for little as Jorrin was given a points win, when for most viewers it looked as though Brodie had done more than enough to win, despite being floored in the tenth round.
Brodie, bitterly, had to take that defeat on the chin and won six on the bounce on his return. Moving up to Featherweight to pick up WBF and IBO titles, and briefly a fight with Prince Naseem Hamed was mooted.
After his IBO win against Juan Gerardo Cabrera, Brodie was nominated as a challenger for the vacant WBC belt at 126 pounds, alongside the unheralded dangerman from South Korea, Injin Chi.
The title had again been made vacant by Erik Morales, who had again moved up in weight.
Chi had challenged for the same title two years prior to meeting Brodie, putting in a spirited effort before going down to Morales on the cards in July 2001.
Seoul based Chi had lost on his debut in 1991 over four rounds, and had fought almost exclusively in his home country throughout his professional career, once fighting in the Phillipines and then to Los Angeles to challenge Morales.
Brodie v Chi purse bids were won by Matchroom, then spearheaded by Barry Hearn rather than his son Eddie, and the fight was set for mid October at the Manchester Arena.
Hometown advantage had again been gained for Brodie’s second world title tilt. The home fighter started as a slight 4/6 favourite, but the two were perfectly matched.
What followed was pure sporting theatre. An absolute war ending with absolute controversy, a monumental mix up, and an inevitable rematch.
An absolute classic can be found here: