1890-01-24 (130lbs) Jim Burge w rtd 22 (40) Sam Baxter, Foley’s White Horse Gym, Sydney, Australia

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1890-01-24 (130lbs) Jim Burge w rtd 22 (40) Sam Baxter, Foley’s White Horse Gym, Sydney, Australia. Referee: George Hill. Billed for the world and Imperial British Empire 130lbs title, Baxter (130), the more scientific of the two, punished Burge (128½) about the head and body in the first four rounds but made no great impression on the latter who was living up to his reputation as the ‘Iron Man’. Having forced the fight from the opening bell, Burge came back to bully Baxter against the ropes and took a decided lead until the latter began to warm to his work. Right through from the ninth to the 20th the Englishman peppered Burge with straight lefts and the occasional right uppercut and in the 18th the local was banged about from pillar to post. Unfortunately for Baxter his left arm was injured in the 20th and although he bravely persevered his position was hopeless and he was forced to retire two minutes into the 22nd round.

Although the Sportsman reported that Baxter had been knocked out while the Sporting Life stated that he had retired, neither paper mentioned anything about knockdowns. Baxter had been considered unbeatable at the weight in England and when news came though that Burge had won many bets were taken on the decision being wrongly reported.

On 31 May, the Sporting Life reported that Bill Whatley should now be recognised as the English 130lbs champion, but by April 1891 Whatley could no longer make the weight. Other men who would have a say at 130lbs, included George Johnson (the winner of a championship competition at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Haymarket, London, when forcing Harry Mead to retire in the first round on 30 May 1891) and Bill Reader (who claimed to be the English champion on 6 April 1892).