On This Day: Mark Breland gets tough education on professional boxing from Marlon Starling


Mark Breland
Amateur superstar Mark Breland upset by the excellent Marlon Starling in WBA welterweight title fight

August 22, 1987; Township Auditorium, Columbia, SC
MARK BRELAND was one of the hottest talents to emerge from the amateur ranks in the USA but, despite winning the WBA welterweight title, went into battle with Marlon Starling predominantly untested as a professional. Starling was a sizeable underdog but, in sharp to contrast to his opponent, he was seasoned and ready. The contest is a gruelling one; Breland’s excellent jab dictates much of the early action but Starling’s class and intelligence is evident, too. Though a long way ahead on all cards going into the 11th, Breland finds himself in a firefight as he goes past 10 rounds for the first time. Exhausted and no longer able to keep Starling off him, Breland is hooked out of the bout in a sizeable upset.

DID YOU KNOW? Evander Holyfield, then the cruiserweight champion was ringside cheering on his former Olympic teammate, Breland. World heavyweight boss, Mike Tyson, was in attendance too.

WATCH OUT FOR: The supreme defence and counterpunching skills of Marlon Starling.

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