Flashback: When Michael Sprott floored hasty referee for controversial stoppage call (video)

Micheal Sprott

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World Boxing News looks back to when former British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion Michael Sprott faced undefeated contender Edmund Gerber.

A September 2012 collision saw an angered Sprott push referee Gerhard Sigl down to the canvas in the fourth round after the fight was stopped highly prematurely.

Sprott was suspended by the Austrian Boxing Union for his post-fight actions and his subsequent ban was officially lifted on the day the Briton and Gerber took part in a rematch.

On the 15th of December in Nuremberg, Germany at the Arena Nürnberger Versicherung, Sprott exacted his revenge with a ten-round majority decision.

Inflicting a maiden loss on Gerber, Sprott would then go on to lose on points against Robert Helenius in what was effectively a European title eliminator.

At the time of his shocking stopping captured in the video, Sprott outlined why his boiling point hit once Sigl stepped in despite all his faculties clearly being in place.

“To be honest, I’ve been robbed a few times in Germany. It was a built up of frustration. When the referee stopped the fight, he knew I could carry on and he knew I was beating Gerber.

“To me, he stopped it to save Gerber’s career,” Sprott told World Boxing News at the time.

“I saw red. I was just so frustrated that it seemed like every time I’m winning a fight, they’re always trying to cheat me by points or stopping the fight.”

Not foreseeing an honest decision coming his way, Sprott gave this prediction on the return, which he took via majority nod.

“If it goes to points and it is close, they definitely won’t give it to me they’ll give it to him. I’m looking to try and stop him. I can’t leave to go in the hands of the judges.”