Monday, July 13, 2009 | 12:51 p.m.
Showtime Sports announced Monday that it would present the inaugural Super Six World Boxing Classic. Dates and venues for the six-fighter tournament will be announced later this month. The final bout would take place in early 2011.
The tournament will take place in a round-robin format and features six of the top boxers of the super middleweight division. Four of them are undefeated and two are former U.S. Olympic medalists.
The list of competitors include: IBF champion Arthur Abraham (30-0, 24 KO), U.S. Oympic medalist Andre Dirrell (18-0. 13 KO), WBC champion Carl Froch (25-0, 20 KO), WBA champion Mikkel Kessler (41-1, 31 KO), former world champion Jermain Taylor (28-3-1, 17 KO) and U.S. Olympic medalist Andre Ward (19-0, 12 KO).
“The 168-pound division is the most talent rich in boxing right now,” said Showtime Sports senior vice president Ken Hershman. “The Super Six tournament structure will deliver one compelling matchup after another. I can’t wait to get started.”
Each fighter has signed on to face three different opponents over the next year. All bouts are scheduled for 12 rounds. The scoring system will award two points for a win with a one point KO/TKO bonus. A draw awards one point while a loss awards none.
"I don't really care who I fight, with me there’s always plenty of action in the ring," Taylor said. "I'm glad to be a participant in this tournament SHOWTIME has put together. It’s good for boxing and the fans."
The top four after the first stage will advance to the semi-finals where the lowest two will be eliminated. Fights will take place in both the U.S. and Europe.
“The stars have truly aligned,” Hersman said. “It began as an intriguing concept and through a tremendous amount of hard work, we are going to pull off one of the most exciting events in boxing history.”