Daniel Geale – Practitioners of the Sweet Science seldom list job security as one of the chief attractions of their chosen career.
The onset of unemployment can be ruthlessly swift and opportunities for spent boxers to pursue a job that builds on their ring experiences are seldom abundant and certainly far less rewarding financially.
Fortunately, the days when a boxer was a totally disposable commodity who existed mainly for the purpose of enriching the promoters who controlled their client’s destinies, squeezed every possible dollar from them, and then discarded them when they no longer proved a source of profit, seemingly are behind us.
Not so long ago, the sport of boxing was essentially left for dead, but the advent of pay-per-view boxing matches uncovered a pent-up demand that has rejuvenated the sport to the extent that revenues have expanded, and more importantly, skilled boxers have realised their truth worth in the equation as the immutable laws of supply and demand have come into play.
One of Australia’ significant contributions to the sport is a Middleweight pugilist who hails from Tasmania, Daniel Geale, aka. Real Deal Geale.
Daniel Geale was born 26 February 1981 in Launceston, Tasmania. He currently resides in Narellen, New South Wales where he devotes as much time as possible to his family, something on which he places great importance. He lists, other than boxing of course, NRL, AFL, Golf and Cricket as his personal interests.
He began boxing at the age of nine and had his first amateur bout in 1991 when he was ten years of age. He lists in his biography that he had 165 amateur fights and compiled a record of 135 wins against only 30 losses.
Daniel Geale obviously was quite active as an amateur boxer at the beginners’ ranks for some time, as 165 bouts would seem to clearly indicate.
At the international level, he suffered the indignity of losing in the first round of the 2000 Olympics to Italy’s Leonard Bundu.
He did fare far better in the 2002 Commonwealth Games, where he competed as a welterweight. Daniel Geale bested Tsetsi Davis of Jamaica in the opening round and Kwanele Zulu of South Africa for the medal.
That same year, at the World Cup in Kazakhstan, he lost twice, to a Turkish and a Cuban fighter. He did no better at the 2003 World Cup in Thailand, losing to Bakhtiyar Artayev of Kazakhstan by a rather dismal score of 30-8.
Once money was on the line, Gaele did much better.
His professional debut found him knocking out Danny “No Nickname” Bellert in 2004. Gaele needed only two full rounds a part of the third to dispose of Bellert.
That was the beginning of the accumulation of 16 more victories, 12 of those by knockout. Gaele progressed through the ranks, each time facing more formidable opponents.
Daniel Geale first championship bout was the IBO sanctioned Middleweight Championship of the World, when he won a unanimous judges’ decision over fellow Australian and previously undefeated (29-0-0, 20 KO’s) and fellow Daniel as well, Daniel “The Rock” Dawson.
The following year of 2008 found The Real Deal defending his title against the proficient Serbian pugilist Geard Ajetovic. Gaele, along with three others, are the only boxers to best Ajetovic. Gaele retained the IBO Middleweight Championship in another 12 rounder that went the distance and resulted in a unanimous decision in his favour.
Gaele was in the ring again in under six months against yet another Daniel, this one Daniel “The King” McKinnon (21-7-1, 7KO’s) that was a nail biter, with Gaele going down once and McKinnon four times. The judges gave the fight unanimously to Gaele.
First up in 2009, he beat Ian MacKillop (25-12-3, 8Ko’s), knocking the Canadian out in the first round.
Anthony “The Man,” “Choc” Mundine (44-5-0 26 KO’s), a former rugger from Newtown, NSW, took the IBO title from Daniel Geale in a controversial split decision, after which he attempted to add insult to injury by proclaiming that he had hardly bothered to study Geale prior to the fight.
Gaele’s feeling were apparently undamaged, as he would come back to win three consecutive and earn another shot at the world title.
He then traveled to Germany to take on Sebastian “The Hurricane” Sylvester (34-5-1, 16 KO’s). A split decision awarded the bout to Gaele and he once again reigned as IBO Middle weight Champion of the World. That bout took place in 2011.
March of 2012 saw him defend against Ghanaian boxer Osumanu “The Former IBO Middleweight Champion,” “Ozzie Adams,” “Machine Gun” Adama (22-3-0, 22 KO’s) in a unanimous decision.
At this time, the powers-that-be in the world of professional boxing, the IBO and the WBA, decided that a title unification bout was in order, with the primary consideration of course being the integrity of boxing, with the potential monetary windfall playing only a minor role.
The first day of September saw Daniel Geale defeating the long time WBA Champion, Felix “The Fighter” Sturm (38-17-3-2, 1 NC, 17 KO’s) of Germany via a split decision, making Gaele the Unified Middleweight Champion of the World, becoming just the fourth Australian to reach the rarified atmosphere of boxing world champion.
It took less than two months for a controversy to develop when Gaele was penalised for Sturm’s refusal to fight mandatory challengers. You read that right. Gaele was penalised because of whom Sturm had refused to fight.
The WBO actually stripped Gaele of the title he had won in the ring because Gaele had expressed the preference for a rematch against Mundine as opposed to a mandatory defence on short preparation against Gennady “Good Boy” Golovkin (27-0-0, 24 KO’s).
The Mundine rematch took place 30 January 2013. In what was definitely not a case of hometown favouritism, Geale unequivocally and unanimously destroyed Mundine at the Sydney Entertainment Centre, hurting Mudine’s feelings so badly that he and his entire entourage departed the premises post-haste.
Daniel Geale’s most recent fight was a title defence against Darren “Dazzling Darren” Barker (26-1-0, 16 KO’s) a Brit from London.
He lost that fight in a split decision that left some observers scratching their heads and speculating that certain judges may have been scratching a part of their anatomies somewhat to the south of their heads, but what would boxing be without the occasional, rare controversy?
Daniel Geale’s record to date is 29-2-0. 15 KO’s.