St. david's press

October 2014




978 1 902719 382


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St.David's Press


Dragons vs Eagles 

Wales vs America in the Boxing Ring

Gareth Jones

'The epic battles between Welsh and American fighters provide the author with an abundant harvest for this book. All the historic clashes are featured, but unquestionably the greatest - Tommy Farr's gallant defeat against Joe Louis 76 years ago - understandably takes pride of place. Gareth Jones doesn't let his readers down, also highlighting Jim Driscoll, Freddie Welsh, Colin Jones and Joe Calzaghe among others whose wars with men from across the Atlantic are part of Wales's sporting folklore '
Colin Hart, Boxing Columnist, The Sun

Wales has always punched above its weight in the boxing ring. The United States, with 100 times the population, may have been the dominant player in the sport, but St David has done remarkably well against Goliath over the 120 years since the first bout in 1894.

The Americans drooled over Jim Driscoll, the man dubbed 'Peerless' by the gunfighter-turned-journalist, Bat Masterson, while Jimmy Wilde also demonstrated his right to be considered one of the greatest of all time.

Freddie Welsh even based himself in the States for most of his career, although he claimed the world lightweight title from Willie Ritchie in London, with both men having to cross the Atlantic.

In more recent years, Joe Calzaghe's masterclass against Jeff Lacy finally convinced the American doubters, before he completed his  unbeaten career by beating legends Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones, Jr, in front of their own people.

This book, while giving those bouts their due, looks at dozens of other contests between the two nations, covering more than a century, revealing some of the tales behind the headlines.     

Gareth Jones is a journalist who has been writing and broadcasting on boxing in Wales for more than 30 years, including over 15 years as Boxing Correspondent of the South Wales Echo, and a longer period as Welsh Boxing Correspondent of Boxing News.

60 bouts featured including:
1894 - John O'Brien v Frank Craig
1909 - Jim Driscoll v Abe Atell
1914 - Freddy Welsh v Willie Ritchie
1916 - Jimmy Wilde v Johnny Rosner
1937 - Tommy Farr v Joe Louis
1949 - Eddie Thomas v Billy Graham
1959 - Joe Erskine v Billy Pastrano
1965 - Howard Winstone v Don Johnson
1980 - Johnny Owen v Lupe Pintor
1983 - Colin Jones v Milton McCrory
2005 - Enzo Maccarinelli v Ritchie La Montagne
2006 - Joe Calzaghe v Jeff Lacy
2012 - Nathan Cleverly v Shawn Hawk



Also of interest


The Boxers of Wales

The Boxers of Wales
Pontypridd & Aberdare

The Boxers of Wales

The Boxers of Wales
The Gwent Valleys
and Monmouthshire



The Boxers of Wales

The Boxers of Wales
South, West and Mid