Anthony Mundine’s colourful boxing career appears to have finally ended following his split points loss to Muay Thai legend John Wayne Parr in Brisbane on Saturday.
The 44-year-old Sydneysider was knocked down in the fourth round of the middleweight contest but survived a standing-eight count before being docked a point in the eighth round for hitting Parr in the back of the head.
Judges scored the fight 94-95, 96-93 & 95-93 in favour of 43-year-old Parr, who was fighting in a boxing ring for the first time in 16 years.
The defeat dropped Mundine’s record to 48-10, with four of those losses coming in his past five fights.
Parr announced his retirement from combat sports as he needs a hip replacement and Mundine signalled his intention to finish up.
“I’ve had a wonderful career. Now it’s time to tend to my family,” Mundine said.
“I was contemplating even before the fight ‘Do I really want to do this any more?’
“I’m just going to sail into the sunset now.”
Former rugby league star Mundine had his first boxing bout back in July 2000.
His boxing career has lasted four years longer than his father and former middleweight world title contender Tony Mundine, though his dad had 38 more professional bouts.
Mundine has been a polarising figure in Australian boxing, drawing fans who wanted to see him win and lose.
His outspoken comments on boxing and social matters guaranteed him plenty of publicity. And while he didn’t always live up to his boasts, he still enjoyed a fine boxing career.
He won the regular WBA super middleweight crown, the WBA interim world light middleweight title and IBO world middleweight belt and several regional straps and was Australian super middleweight champion.
Mundine had victories over several other world-class fighters including Shane Mosley, Antwun Echols, Sam Soliman (twice) and his arch-rival Danny Green in their first bout in front of a big crowd in Sydney.
He had a pleasing boxing style and his fast hands were his biggest weapon and gave him an edge over most opponents.
But as his reflexes slowed with the passing of time, he became more vulnerable in recent years.