FORMER WBC light-heavyweight and WBA cruiserweight champ Dwight Muhammad Qawi – all 5ft 7ins of him – was a terrific fighter in his day. With no amateur career, Qawi – who had been sentenced to five years in jail for robbery, learning how to box while in Rahway State Prison – made a swift march to the top. Turning pro in 1978, the Maryland native with the incredible workrate and subtle defence went 1-1-1 in his first three fights, before going on to make astonishing progress. Now the Hall of Famer has some career to look back on. Despite being in fine health, he does have his regrets, however.
Of all the great fights you had, which one do people want to talk to you about the most today?
People talk mostly about two fights: the first fight with Evander Holyfield [l sd 15] and the fight with Michael Spinks [l ud 15]. Just the other day some people were telling me I won both of those fights [smiles]. I had problems with my nose going into the Spinks fight – I had a damaged septum. I couldn’t fight my usual fight – going in on the attack. I had to wait and box. Even a touch to my nose hurt bad. I can’t even describe the pain.