Did Heavyweight Champion Corrie “The Sniper” Sanders Get His Just Dues?
It took three years for the three murderers from who Zimbabwe who burst into a restaurant in Brits in 2012 firing their weapons during a robbery killing the former Heavyweight Champion of the World South African Corrie Sanders who also lived in CA, USA.
The murderers all received 30-year sentences from the High Court in Pretoria for murder, robbery and illegal possession of fire arms and ammunition. Ex-wife Sunet Sanders said it has been a difficult journey for her family. Sunet Sanders said, “My children are not blessed that it’s over but they feel a bit more relief because those people are not out there on the streets anymore. They feel they can start healing at this stage and go on with their lives, because that is exactly what Corrie and I want them to do.”
Sanders had an outstanding amateur record of 196-4. After his loss to Hasim Rahman where both boxers had hit the canvas Rahman stated “I have never been hit like that in my life”.
On March 8, 2003, Sanders won the WBO heavyweight championship stopping champion Wladimir Klitschko, 40-1, in the second round, in Hannover, Germany. At that point, his career was misguided to wait thirteen months to fight again. His opponent was the brother of Wladimir, Vitali Klitschko, 33-2, who stopped Sanders in the eighth round. It was for the vacant WBC title that Lennox Lewis vacated. The WBO stripped Sanders of his title when he refused to fight his No. 1 contender Lamon Brewster. He said he wanted a bigger money fight so he gave up the title to fight Klitschko. The match was held at the Staples Center, in Los Angeles, CA, on April 24, 2004. Being off for 13 months and taking on a tough opponent who was out for “revenge” of his brother’s loss was not a wise decision to make. On top of that Sanders didn’t look to be in the type of shape he was when he fought Wladimir.
At the age of 42 Sanders didn’t need to still be boxing. When he was knocked out by an average boxer like Osborne Machimana, 14-5-1, on February 8, 2008, he knew it was the end of the line for his boxing career. His final record of 42-4 with 31 knockouts was an outstanding one though all four losses were by stoppage. He never had a rematch with any of those four opponents that defeated him.
After his retirement Sanders played a lot of golf and was encouraged to qualify for the PGA tour. He was a gifted athlete and died too young at the age of 46. Sanders in his prime would make the heavyweight picture quite interesting today if he was still active.