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Orthodox Boxer Crushed in Title Bout

Salita loses fight after 76 seconds and three knock-downs

by
Marc Tracy
December 07, 2009
Khan vs. Salita. Salita is the one, er, getting punched in the face.(Graham Stuart/AFP/Getty Images)

Khan vs. Salita. Salita is the one, er, getting punched in the face.(Graham Stuart/AFP/Getty Images)

Dmitriy “Star of David” Salita, a Ukrainian-born resident of Brooklyn, had hopes of becoming the second Orthodox Jewish boxer to hold a current world-championship belt (following Yuri Foreman). Unfortunately, his opponent Saturday night in Newcastle, England, Amir Khan, had other plans for their junior welterweight title fight. Seventy-six seconds after the opening bell sounded, the referee stopped the fight and awarded it to Khan: a sensible decision given that Khan had already knocked Salita down three times. Khan was heavily favored based on talent and experience alone; the fact that Freddie Roach, the trainer of the world’s best boxer, Manny Pacquiao, was in his corner made victory nearly certain. As for Salita, he gained respect for the moxie with which he eagerly kept rising from his knock-downs against his obvious better. In boxing, however, that respect is the consolation prize of the defeated.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.