In his 169 bouts as a fighter, Heinz Birkle of West Germany was never knocked out.
SV: boxing match in progress, Hanover, West Germany.
SV: referee breaking boxers and being knocked out and boxers trying to help reference up.
SV: slow motion action replay.
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Background: In his 169 bouts as a fighter, Heinz Birkle of West Germany was never knocked out. But it's never too late in the fight game -- even after retirement. For Birkle finally succumbed to KO on Sunday -- while referring.
SYNOPSIS: The middle-aged former fighter was refereeing a match between Kenyan middleweight David Attan and West German Harold Rodewies. They were in the first round when Attan swung a right at his West German opponent, to score a technical knock-out. But it was Birkle who collected the punch.
Here it is again -- Attan swinging hard with that right cross, Rodewies just stepping back in time, the punch carried, through straight into the ref's face. Birkle said only his lip was swollen -- his sense of humour was undamaged. Attan carried on to win the fight with a real KO in the second round.