Gerrie Coetzee - 1970s Heavyweights
Perhaps one of South Africa’s greatest fighters ever, Gerrie Coetzee began his legacy with a South African heavyweight title that he won in 1976 by beating Mike Schutte although it was by disqualification when Coetzee’s opponent tried to kick him after the new champion was knocked down. He would later decision Schutte in a rematch. Coetzee got his first shot at a world title when he fought John Tate but he lost a unanimous decision. Two fights later he lost to the man that took the title from Tate, Mike Weaver. But in 1983 with a knockout of Michael Dokes, Coetzee became champion only to lose to Greg Page over a year later in his first title defense. Coetzee would lose twice more to Frank Bruno and his final fight a loss to Iran Barkley but in his last five bouts, he won three to finish with a record of 33-6-1.