Bob Foster (boxer)

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Bob Foster
Statistics
Real nameRobert Lloyd Foster
Rated atLight-Heavyweight
Height6'3"
NationalityAmerican
Born(1938-12-15) December 15, 1938 (age 75)
Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
StanceOrthodox
Boxing record
Total fights65
Wins56
Wins by KO46
Losses8
Draws1
No contests0
 
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Bob Foster
Statistics
Real nameRobert Lloyd Foster
Rated atLight-Heavyweight
Height6'3"
NationalityAmerican
Born(1938-12-15) December 15, 1938 (age 75)
Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
StanceOrthodox
Boxing record
Total fights65
Wins56
Wins by KO46
Losses8
Draws1
No contests0

Bob Foster (born April 27, 1938) is a native of Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA whom many boxing critics consider to be one of the greatest world light-heavyweight champions in history. As an amateur he won a silver medal at the 1959 Pan American Games.

Professional career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Foster started his professional career on the night of March 27, 1961, against Duke Williams, in Washington, D.C., winning by a knockout in two rounds. The first 12 bouts of his career were spent campaigning in the United States' Eastern coast and in Canada. In his tenth bout, he made his first of multiple forays into the Heavyweight division, and suffered his first loss, at the hands of Doug Jones by a knockout in the eighth round.

After two more wins, he went in 1963 to Peru, where he lost to South American champion Mauro Mina by a decision in ten rounds at Lima.

Three more fights back in the States resulted in quick knockout wins for him, and then, in 1964, he made his second attempt at entering the heavyweight rankings, being knocked out in the seventh by future world Heavyweight champion Ernie Terrell. He finished the year by posting three more knockout wins at Light Heavyweight, two of them on one night: November 11. That was the night that Foster's first fight of note as a light-heavyweight took place: One month after knocking out Don Quinn in the first round, he stepped up in the ring again and faced former world title challenger Henry Hank. He beat Hank by a knockout in the tenth.

In 1965, he had five fights, winning four and losing one. He beat Hank again, by decision in 12, and lost to Zora Folley, by a decision in ten, in another attempt at joining the Heavyweight top ten.

In 1966 he defeated Leroy Green in two rounds.

By 1967, Foster, although his attempts to become a top Heavyweight were being frustrated, was a ranked light-heavyweight. He decided to stick to the light-heavyweight division for the time being, and he won all seven of his fights, six by knockout. Among the fighters he beat were Eddie Cotton, Eddie Vick, and Sonny Moore. After defeating Moore, Foster was the world's number one ranked Light Heavyweight challenger.

World light-heavyweight champion[edit]

In 1968, Foster got his first shot at a world title. At Madison Square Garden in New York, on the night of May 24, Foster became world champion by knocking out Dick Tiger in four rounds. Tiger had been a two-time world middleweight champion and was defending his world light-heavyweight crown that night. Foster then decided to box at heavyweight once again, and beat future George Foreman victim Charlie Polite by a knockout in three. He ended that year defeating Vick again, and his future world title challenger Roger Rouse, both by a knockout.

In 1969, he began by rising off the canvas to knock out Frank De Paula in the same first round and retain his belt. It is believed that was the first time ever a boxer won a world title fight in the first round after being floored in that same round. It is also believed that that fight is one of only three times that's happened... the second time being in 1984, when Juan Meza rose off a knockdown to dethrone world Jr. Featherweight champion Jaime Garza in the same first round too. It also happened in the 21st century, when Kendall Holt was dropped twice, only to knockout Ricardo Torres in round 1, for the WBO 140lb title.

Foster's next fight in 1969 was against Andy Kendall, whom he beat in four rounds by knockout, to once again retain the crown. He closed the 1960s with two more knockout wins.

Frazier vs Foster[edit]

In 1970, Foster made two more trips to the heavyweights. In the first, he beat fringe contender Cookie Wallace in six rounds by knockout. This was followed by a return to the light-heavyweight division to defend his title against Rouse. Infuriated by some comments that Rouse's manager had made before the bout concerning the fact that even though Foster knocked out Rouse in their first bout he was not able to drop him, Foster dropped Rouse five times en route to a fourth round knockout victory. A knockout in 10 to retain the battle against Mark Tessman followed, and then he was given the chance to challenge for the world heavyweight title. Facing world champion Joe Frazier on the night of November 18 in Detroit, he was knocked out in two rounds.

After defeating Hal Carroll by a knockout in four rounds to defend his crown, the WBA stripped him of the title, but he kept being world champion on the WBC. Foster became enraged at the WBA, which proceeded to have Vicente Rondon of Venezuela and Jimmy Dupree fight for the world title. Rondon won, becoming the second Latin American world light-heavyweight champion (after José Torres), and Foster set his eyes on him. Foster went on defending his WBC title, and he defeated challengers Ray Anderson, Tommy Hicks, and Brian Kelly. Of those three, it was Anderson who was the only one to last the 15 round distance with Foster.

Ali vs Foster[edit]

Foster and Rondon met in Miami on April 7, 1972, in an unification bout. Foster became the undisputed world champion once again, by knocking Rondon out in the second round. In his next fight, he used what many critics have called one of the best punches in history to retain his title by a knockout in four against Mike Quarry. Foster then went up in weight and faced former and future world heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali, in what was legendary referee Mills Lane's first bout of note as a referee. Foster lost to Ali by a knockout in the eighth, after being knocked down 7 times.

In 1973, Foster retained his title twice against Pierre Fourie, both by decision. Their second fight had a distinct social impact because it was fought in Apartheid-ruled South Africa, Foster being Black and Fourie being White. Foster became a hero to South African Blacks by beating Fourie the first time around, and in their rematch, the first boxing fight in South Africa after Apartheid featuring a White versus a Black, he cemented that position by defeating Fourie on points again. However, as Mark Mathabane noted in his autobiography Kaffir Boy, South Africa's black population also felt betrayed by Foster since he didn't address Apartheid during his time in South Africa.

Retirement and comeback[edit]

His last defense as world light-heavyweight champion came in 1974, when he was dropped by Argentinian Jorge Ahumada, but managed to keep the title with a draw. After that, he announced his retirement, leaving the world's light-heavyweight championship vacant.[1]

Foster would return to the ring in 1975, winning a series of 10 round contests, before retiring for good after back-to-back stoppage losses in 1978.

Life after boxing[edit]

In his retirement, the former world champion joined the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Department and became a detective, where he would become a well known officer in the Albuquerque area.

Later on, the avid autograph signer was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

Foster had a record of 56 wins, 8 losses and 1 draw, with 46 wins coming by knockout. He was named to Ring Magazine's list of 100 Greatest Punchers. He was also named to Ring Magazine's list of the 80 Best Fighters of the Last 80 Years, ranking at #55.



Professional boxing record[edit]

56 Wins (46 KOs), 8 Losses (6 KOs), 1 Draw[2]
Res.RecordOpponentTypeRound,
Time
DateLocationNotes
Loss56-8-1United States Bob HazeltonTKO2 (?),
?
1978-06-02United States Century II Convention Hall, Wichita, Kansas
Loss56-7-1Uganda Mustafa WassajaRTD5 (8),
-
1978-02-09Denmark K.B. Hallen, Copenhagen
Win56-6-1United States Bob HazeltonKO10 (10),
0:22
1977-09-02Netherlands Antilles Willemstad, Curaçao, Netherlands Antilles
Win55-6-1United States Al BoldenKO6 (10),
?
1976-09-25United States Spokane Coliseum, Spokane, Washington
Win54-6-1United States Harold CarterUD101976-09-25United States Eagles Aerie, Missoula, Montana
Win53-6-1United States Al BoldenKO3 (10),
?
1976-05-08United States Adams Field House, Missoula, Montana
Win52-6-1United States Bill HardneyKO3 (10),
1:26
1975-06-28United States Sweeney Gym, Santa Fe, New Mexico
Draw51-6-1Argentina Jorge AhumadaPTS151974-06-17United States University Arena, Albuquerque, New MexicoRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win51-6South Africa Pierre FourieUD151973-12-01South Africa Rand Stadium, Johannesburg, GautengRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win50-6South Africa Pierre FourieUD151973-08-21United States University Arena, Albuquerque, New MexicoRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Loss49-6United States Muhammad AliKO8 (12),
0:40
1972-11-21United States Sahara Tahoe Hotel, Stateline, NevadaFor NABF heavyweight title.
Win49-5England Chris FinneganKO14 (15),
0:55
1972-09-26England Empire Pool, Wembley, LondonRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
The Ring Fight of the Year 1972.
Win48-5United States Mike QuarryKO4 (15),
?
1972-06-27United States Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, NevadaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win47-5Venezuela Vicente RondónKO4 (15),
2:55
1972-06-27United States Miami Beach Convention Hall, Miami Beach, FloridaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC, & won WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win46-5United States Brian KellyTKO3 (15),
1:56
1971-12-16United States Fairgrounds Arena, Oklahoma City, OklahomaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC light-heavyweight titles.
Win45-5United States Tommy HicksTKO8 (15),
?
1971-10-30United States Catholic Youth Center, Scranton, PennsylvaniaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC light-heavyweight titles.
Win44-5United States Vernon McIntoshTKO3 (10),
0:37
1971-08-17United States Miami Beach, Florida
Win43-5United States Ray AndersonUD151971-04-24United States Curtis Hixon Hall, Tampa, FloridaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC light-heavyweight titles.
Win42-5United States Hal CarrollTKO4 (15),
2:32
1971-03-02United States Catholic Youth Center, Scranton, PennsylvaniaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC light-heavyweight titles.
Loss41-5United States Joe FrazierKO2 (15),
0:49
1970-11-18United States Cobo Arena, Detroit, MichiganFor WBC/WBA heavyweight titles.
Win41-4United States Mark TessmanTKO10 (15),
?
1970-06-27United States Baltimore Civic Center, Baltimore, MarylandRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win40-4United States Roger RouseTKO4 (15),
?
1970-04-04United States Adams Field House, Missoula, MontanaRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win39-4United States Roy WallaceKO6 (10),
?
1970-03-09United States Fort Homer Hesterly Armory, Tampa, Florida
Win38-4United States Bill HardneyTKO4 (10),
?
1970-02-24United States Orlando, Florida
Win37-4United States Chuck LeslieTKO5 (10),
2:58
1969-11-02United States New Orleans Municipal Auditorium, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win36-4United States Levan RoundtreeTKO4 (10),
2:10
1969-06-19United States Atlanta Municipal Auditorium, Atlanta, Georgia
Win35-4United States Andy KendallTKO4 (15),
1:15
1969-05-24United States Eastern States Coliseum, West Springfield, MassachusettsRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win34-4United States Frank DePaulaTKO1 (15),
2:17
1969-01-22United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New YorkRetained Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win33-4United States Roger RouseTKO5 (10),
2:34
1968-09-09United States Washington Coliseum, Washington, D.C
Win32-4United States Eddie VickTKO9 (10),
?
1968-08-26United States Tingley Coliseum, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Win31-4United States Charley PoliteTKO3 (10),
?
1968-07-29United States Eastern States Coliseum, West Springfield, Massachusetts
Win30-4Nigeria Dick TigerKO4 (15),
2:05
1968-05-24United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New YorkWon Lineal/The Ring/WBC/WBA light-heavyweight titles.
Win29-4United States Sonny MooreKO5 (10),
?
1967-12-05United States Washington Coliseum, Washington, D.C
Win28-4United States Eddie VickUD101967-11-20United States Providence Coliseum, Providence, Rhode Island
Win27-4United States Levan RoundtreeKO8 (10),
1:35
1967-10-25United States Washington, D.C
Win26-4United States Henry MatthewsTKO2 (10),
?
1967-06-09United States Starland Arena, Roanoke, Virginia
Win25-4United States Eddie CottonKO3 (12),
1:58
1967-05-08United States Washington Coliseum, Washington, D.C
Win24-4Argentina Andres Antonio SelpaKO2 (10),
2:30
1967-02-27United States Washington Coliseum, Washington, D.C
Win23-4United States Jim RobinsonKO1 (10),
?
1967-01-16United States Washington Coliseum, Washington, D.C
Win22-4United States LeRoy GreenKO2 (?),
?
1966-12-06United States Norfolk Arena, Norfolk, Virginia
Loss21-4United States Zora FolleyUD101965-12-06United States Municipal Auditorium, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win21-3United States Henry HankUD121965-07-26United States Municipal Auditorium, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win20-3United States Chuck LeslieTKO3 (10),
2:58
1965-05-24United States Municipal Auditorium, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win19-3United States Dave RussellTKO6 (10),
1:30
1965-03-21United States Norfolk Arena, Norfolk, Virginia
Win18-3United States Bobby RasconKO2 (10),
?
1965-02-15United States Albuquerque Civic Auditorium, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Win17-3United States Henry HankTKO9 (10),
?
1964-12-11United States Municipal Auditorium, Norfolk, Virginia
Win16-3United States Norman LetcherTKO1 (10),
0:43
1964-11-23United States Kezar Pavilion, San Francisco, California
Win15-3United States Don QuinnKO1 (10),
1:07
1964-11-11United States Norfolk, Virginia
Loss14-3United States Ernie TerrellKO7 (10),
0:58
1964-07-10United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
Win14-2United States Allen ThomasTKO1 (10),
1:26
1964-05-08United States Chicago Coliseum, Chicago, Illinois
Win13-2United States Dave BaileyKO1 (6),
?
1964-02-25United States Miami Beach Convention Hall, Miami Beach, Florida
Win12-2Germany Willi BesmanoffKO3 (10),
?
1963-12-11United States Norfolk, Virginia
Loss11-2Peru Mauro MinaUD101963-11-07Peru Estadio Nacional, Lima
Win11-1United States Curtis BruceKO4 (?),
?
1963-04-29United States Capitol Arena, Washington, D.C
Win10-1United States Richard BenjaminKO1 (8),
?
1963-02-18United States Capitol Arena, Washington, D.C
Loss9-1United States Doug JonesTKO8 (10),
0:23
1962-10-20United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
Win9-0United States Bert WhitehurstSD81962-06-27United States Sunnyside Garden, Sunnyside, Queens, New York, New York
Win8-0United States Billy TisdaleTKO2 (6),
?
1962-05-19United States St. Nicholas Arena, New York, New York
Win7-0United States Clarence FloydKO4 (6),
2:56
1961-12-04Canada Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario
Win6-0United States Ernie KnoxTKO3 (6),
?
1961-11-21United States Norfolk, Virginia
Win5-0United States Floyd McCoyPTS61961-08-08Canada Delormier Stadium, Montreal, Quebec
Win4-0United States Ray BryanTKO2 (6),
?
1961-06-22Canada Forum, Montreal, Quebec
Win3-0United States Billy JohnsonPTS41961-05-08United States St. Nicholas Arena, New York, New York
Win2-0United States Clarence RyanPTS41961-04-03United States St. Nicholas Arena, New York, New York
Win1-0United States Duke WilliamsKO2 (4),
?
1961-03-27United States Capitol Arena, Washington, District of ColumbiaProfessional debut.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Foster Keeps Title on Draw". St. Petersburg Times. 1974-06-18. Retrieved 2010-01-13. [dead link]
  2. ^ Bob Foster's Professional Boxing Record. BoxRec.com. Retrieved on 2011-12-27.

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Dick Tiger
World Light Heavyweight Champion
May 24, 1968 – September 16, 1974
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Michael Spinks
WBA Light Heavyweight Champion
May 24, 1968 – December 9, 1970
Stripped
Vacant
Title next held by
Vicente Rondon
WBC Light Heavyweight Champion
May 24, 1968 – September 16, 1974
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
John Conteh
Preceded by
Vicente Rondon
WBA Light Heavyweight Champion
April 7, 1972 – September 16, 1974
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Victor Galindez
Awards
Preceded by
Carlos Ortiz
BWAA Fighter of the Year
1968
Succeeded by
Joe Frazier