British IBO Champion Chris Eubank Jr. (25-1-0,19 KOs) and Turkish Avni Yildirim (16-0, 10 KOs) and their respective teams fought with words at an overheated press conference before Saturday’s Ali Trophy quarter-final clash at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle.
At the end of the press conference things escalated when Yildirim’s manager Ahmet Öner was close to engaging himself in a fight with a member of Team Eubank Jr.
Oner was unhappy at the no-show by Eubank Jr. on Tuesday, when the fighter’s famous father stated the threat of hooligans had kept his son from making an appearance.
Obviously irate, Oner rolled up his sleeves and wanted a physical fight before unleashing some shocking insults.
Earlier, Eubank Jr. had set the tone for the press conference in his opening statement:
“The warship has landed fully equipped, fully loaded and all the artillery is pointing at Yildirim,” said the 28-year-old third seed in the Ali Trophy super-middleweight tournament.
“So you are coming with all your weapons,” said 26-year-old Avni Yildirim.
“Don’t forget the first world war when everybody was after the Turks and couldn’t do it. We are still here and everyone knows what Turkish soldiers are capable of. Turks are soldiers, war is in our DNA.”
Ahmet Öner, Yildirim’s manager and coach: “Eubank Jr. is right – this will be war. I hope he has enough weapons to stay 12 rounds. If you win I will be the first guy to respect you and shake your hand, but I do not see that happen.”
Eubank Jr. added: “One thing I do want to say. I have a lot of respect for the Turkish community, I have Turkish friends and I like Turkish food. This is a fight between two men. I advise Avni to take his focus of off stirring up a drama between two countries.”
Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer, Kalle Sauerland:
“We are delighted to be in Stuttgart, a great fight town.”
“Eubank Jr. and Yildirim are both stars in their own rights in their countries. We will see a war between two gladiators, two outstanding athletes.”
Tickets for the hotly anticipated fight October 7 at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle are available