Max Schmeling vs. Jack Sharkey (1st meeting)

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Schmeling on the canvas in the fourth round.

Max Schmeling 188 lbs beat Jack Sharkey 197 lbs by DQ at 2:55 in round 4 of 15


  • Jack Sharkey and Max Schmeling were fighting for the World Heavyweight Championship, which had been vacant since Gene Tunney, the previous titleholder, retired on July 31, 1928.
  • The Ring Magazine rated Sharkey as the #1 heavyweight contender and Schmeling was rated #2.
  • Sharkey won the first three rounds, but he was disqualified after he landed a low blow late in the fourth round. Schmeling became the first boxer to win the World Heavyweight Championship on a foul.
  • Both fighters earned $177,971.
  • The gross gate was $749,934 and the net was $711,668.
  • In the total attendance of 79,222 were 74,153 paid admissions.
  • Notable personalities in attendance included former World Heavyweight Champions Jack Dempsey and Gene Tunney, heavyweight contenders Paolino Uzcudun and Johnny Risko, New York City Mayor Jimmy Walker, automobile entrepreneur Walter Percy Chrysler, film directors Ernst Lubitsch and Josef von Sternberg, and actress Marlene Dietrich.
  • On January 7, 1931, the New York State Athletic Commission stripped Schmeling of the title after his manager, Joe Jacobs, refused to enter into an agreement to defend the title in a rematch against Sharkey.