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Somewhere in Time (3) – Charlie Magri

The third in what we now know will become a regular series.

For the third in this series I’ve chosen the Stepney fighter Charlie Magri

Born on 20th July 1956, in Tunis, Tunisia, Charlie Magri was from a Maltese family that settled in Stepney and he went on to have a career whereby he boxed 35 times.

Of those 35 fights Magri, won 30, (25 inside the distance) and lost 5 times.

During those 30 wins Magri was to hold the WBC, European and British flyweight titles.

At just five feet three inches tall, Magri made his professional debut in October 1977, at just 21 years old, stopping Neil McLaughlin in the second round, with the fight being staged at the Albert Hall.

Magri’s progress was swift, in just his third fight he won the British flyweight title stopping Dave Smith in the seventh round.

Marching forward, the two-handed puncher, in his twelfth fight, having won all the previous eleven, took on Franco Udella, in May 1979, for the European flyweight title at Wembley Arena. The fight went the distance but Magri was to emerge the victor on points.

Defences of his European title saw Magri, in December 1979, beat the Spaniard Manuel Carrasco on points before, in June 1980, knocking out the Italian Giovanni Camputaro, in the third round. Back in action, in February 1981, Magri blitzed the Spaniard Enrique Rodriguez and knocked him out in the second round.

The world stage now beckoned for Magri and in March 1983 he stepped into the ring at Wembley Arena to take on Eleonico Mercedes, of the Dominican Republic, for the WBC world title. In a brutal fight it was Magri who emerged as the new world champion when the fight was stopped, due to cuts, in the seventh round.

Six months later, in September 1983, Magri defended his world title, again at Wembley Arena, against Frank Cedeno, of the Phillipines. It was a disastrous night for Magri with the Stepney fighter being down three times the referee stopped the fight in the sixth round.

Trying to put his career back on track, in August 1984, Magri fought the Italian Franco Cherchi for the vacant European flyweight title in Cagliari. Magri was ahead, having won the first round, when a clash of heads in the second round saw the referee stop the fight.

Back on the world stage, in February 1985, Magri took to the ring at the Alexandra Palace to take on the Thai fighter Sot Chitalada for the vacant WBC title. The bout was to end in disappointment for Magri with his corner retiring him after round four.

A second bout against Franco Cherchi, in October 1985, in Allessandria Italy, saw Magri win convincingly this time around, stopping his opponent in round two by way of a knockout. May 1986 saw Magri have his last fight when he defended his European title against the up and coming Duke McKenzie, his career was to end with a loss when his corner retired him after McKenzie had floored the Stepney fighter in the fifth round.

Champagne Charlie Magri gave us some wonderful memories in his fight career and will always have a place in our hearts.


The Journalist

Writer: Kid Glove Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday June 3 2014

Time: 4:00PM

 

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