Columns After humiliation, it’s hard to admit defeat – Boxer Floyd Patterson feared losing by putting a fake suit

Patterson knew that only at the moment of defeat did man really reveal himself.

Before big matches boxer Floyd Patterson packed his attache portfolio with food, clothes, a beard, mustache and sunglasses.

If he won, no equipment would be needed. But when the defeat came, he would put on a disguise and disappear with little noise.

Patterson had won Olympic gold in Helsinki in 1952 and became the world champion in professional boxing heavyweight in November 1956. He was the youngest champion in the history of the series, only 21 years old.

He had a kind gaze, a character described as gentle, and as a heavyweight a light physique. He said he was boxing because that was the only thing he was good at.

1960s at the beginning of American society was starting a hectic decade. The same was true for professional boxing. The matches were marred by the mafia, and the sport was written by prominent journalists of their time. For a while, Patterson was a big star.

In the September 1962 championship, Patterson was met with a wrecked Sonny Liston with a prison sentence in the background. In order to maximize the attention value of the match, a story that divided opinions and suitably aroused the audience was needed.

Reporters built a role for “good black” for Patterson. His victory is demanded by the press and many whites, including President John F. Kennedy.

Liston was given the disgusting role of “evil black”. He represented danger and decay.

The match was quickly over. In two minutes and six seconds, Liston knocked out Patterson. In the back room, the loser wore an artificial beard and glasses, drove through the night and flew in disguise on top of Spain to shame.

Pattersonia has been considered a heavyweight gentleman. At the beginning of the match, he didn’t want to stare into his opponent’s eyes – it was hard to look at the person to be hit.

Patterson played three fierce matches against Ingemar Johansson of Sweden. The men became friends, and Patterson even ran the Stockholm Marathon.

Patterson knew he was not a great champion. He was just a champion.

Losing is difficult for many. It is especially difficult if the defeat happens in the eyes of the whole world, by knockout.

Patterson tried to work out the shame he was experiencing. He wanted to discuss the matter with other boxers, but couldn’t really find a conversation partner.

In one interview, Patterson thought he was a coward.

“Everything is easy at the moment of victory. Only when the defeat comes is man revealing himself. ”

The author is a feature of HSdelivery supplier.


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