Former world light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev will join amateur rival Artur Beterbiev in a mandatory match with Anthony Yarde.
Back in 2019, Kovalev made a mandatory defense of the WBO title against Yarde in Russia.
In the second half of the fight, Yarde put Kovalev in serious trouble and seemed on the verge of being KO’d. Kovalev was able to survive and eventually stopped an exhausted yarde in the championship rounds.
On Saturday night in London, Yarde will earn his second leap to gold when he challenges Beterbiev for the IBF, WBO and WBC light heavyweight titles.
Kovalev, who now competes at cruiserweight, explains he was off for the fight and still managed to get past Yarde’s rallies and stop him.
Beterbiev is a massive favorite in the fight, with Yarde having at best a puncher chance.
Kovalev doesn’t expect the fight to go into the second half – with his prediction that Beterbiev will secure a stoppage in the first six rounds of the fight.
“I think it’s going to be an interesting fight but in my opinion Artur will crush it. I was in trouble fighting Anthony Yarde. I had problems on lap seven or eight because I was running out of energy after losing weight. I lost over 15 pounds for this fight. He couldn’t stop me,” Kovalev told Ring IQ.
“What I think Artur will do him in mid-fight. It’s boxing. By six at the latest. I think so, five, six. They are both big, strong and smart. So it’s an interesting fight but I think Beterbiev will crush him before the middle of the fight.”