25 Years Ago: World title and a big Benn date set for Herol

Herol Bomber Graham.
Herol Bomber Graham.

We’re after you, Nigel Benn, but there may be bigger horizons first. So said Herol Graham and company after his five round blast in Sheffield to defeat James Cook for the British middleweight title.

Graham was out to nail Cook from the start and put in an aggressive show that had his supporters chanting: “Are you watching Nigel Benn?”

The headlines were: Next stop the world but we are quite happy to silence Mr Benn any time.

The priority looked to be the world title with manager Barney Eastwood saying: “I’ll use all my skill, power and contacts to bring Herol a world title fight in his home town, possibly in the next few months.”

Eastwood was masterminding a hot property. He revealed that negotiations with the Benn camp had opened prior to the fight against Cook but said: “Herol is No.1, he is going for the world title fight and in the driving seat.”

Eastwood reckoned a Graham-Benn fight would attract a crowd of 30-40,000.

The only man to have beaten Graham, Sumbu Kalambay, was the World Boxing Association champion and was due to defend his title against American Robbie Simms. He was told that if he wins he must face official challenger Graham by December 5.

Also on the horizon was WBC champion Iran Barkley who sensationally beat Thomas Hearns earlier in the week, with Eastwood declaring: “I can explore that avenue also.”

On possible opponents Bomber said: “Kalumbay has got the edge because he beat me and I wouold like to reverse the decision.”

However the man capturing the most attention was the Dark Destroyer, Benn, who had hogged the spotlight with his destructive powers.