K2 Promotions, which handles sibling heavyweight titleholders Vitali Klitschko and Wladimir Klitschko, has expressed its condolences in the wake of the death of South African former WBO beltholder Corrie Sanders over the weekend.
“It was a shock to Vitali and Wladimir as well as myself when I heard the news,” said Tom Loeffler, managing director of K2 Promotions. “Corrie was a world champion boxer and a true gentleman and a pleasure to work with outside the ring.”
Sanders, 46, was shot in an apparent robbery in Britz, near Pretoria, South Africa, while celebrating the birthday of a family member. According to at least one report, Sanders lay across his 15-year-old daughter, Marinique, while the robbers were shooting randomly, and had whispered to her pretend she was dead.
A talented southpaw, Sanders’ second-round knockout of Wladimir Klitschko was among the sport’s major upsets in March of 2003.
Sanders was stopped in the eighth round of his very next fight against Vitali Klitschko at The Staples Center in Los Angeles in April of 2004.
“We were shocked to learn of the sudden death of Corrie Sanders, and we want to express our sincere condolences to his family,” read a joint statement from the Klitschko brothers.
“We will remember Corrie as a great person both inside and outside the ring. He was a great fighter with a big heart who always positively represented the sport of boxing.”
Another highlight for Sanders was a brawl with ex-titleholder Hasim Rahman, to whom he lost by seventh-round stoppage in May of 2000.
“The fight at Staples Center against Vitali was the first promotion of K2, and I have very fond memories of working with Corrie and his team. He fought like a true warrior that night,” said Loeffler.
“Corrie fought all over the world but his fights against both Vitali and Wladimir, and Fight of the Year candidate war against Hasim Rahman in Atlantic City in 2000 are probably what he’s best known for.”
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com