IBF Light Heavyweight Eliminator Between Artur Beterbiev & Sullivan Barrera Goes to Purse Bid

MONTRÉAL (September 23, 2015) – A purse bid will take place October 5 at the chief office of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) in Springfield, New Jersey, for the IBF light heavyweight elimination fight between the IBF No. 2 and No. 8 contenders, respectively, Montreal’s Artur Beterbiev (9-0, 9 KOs) and Cuban Sullivan Barrera (16-0, 11 KOs).

Under IBF rules, the minimum bid is $100,000 for this bout.  Beterbiev will receive 75-percent of the purse bid to Barrera’s 25-percent, since the two-time Russian Olympian is the highest ranked contender, in addition to him already having won an IBF eliminator to earn his No. 2 spot.

“It is somewhat deceiving that we have to go to the purse bid,” said Beterbiev’s promoter, GYM president Yvon Michel.  “According to Barrera’s promoter (Kathy Duva, Main Events), he cannot enter Canada.  Should GYM win the purse bid and then Barrera is unable to fight in Canada, we will have to start the process all over again.”

Whether Barrera will be there or not, Beterbiev will see action soon.
“We intend to win the purse bid and give Artur a fight in Quebec, in November, regardless of the opponent,” Michel added.

Zeuge defends IBF International Title vs Sjekloca April 25

Tyron Zeuge (16-0, 10 KOs) has it all to prove on April 25 when the hotly tipped German super middleweight prospect defends his IBF International strap against former world title challenger Nikola Sjekloca (28-3, 8 KOs) in front of his home fans at the Columbia Halle in Berlin.

The seasoned Sjekloca represents Zeuge’s toughest test to date and has secured the young champion his first main event billing. Despite the pressure of headlining at home, the 22 year-old Berliner’s focus remains clear. ‘’For me this is a fight like any other,’’ said Zeuge. ‘’Whether I’m fighting on the undercard or topping the bill, my objective is the same – I must win!’’

This winning mentality has been drilled into Zeuge since joining the paid ranks in 2012 and teaming up with renowned German coach Karsten Roewer. Ahead of Zeuge’s second IBF International title defence, the experience coach has offered his protégé some words of warning. ’’Tyron is a natural when it comes to boxing,’’ said Roewer. ‘’But regardless of talent, he will need to bring his A-game to beat Sjekloca and continue his journey to the top.’’

While Zeuge’s star is rising, Sjekloca is tried and tested at the highest level. The 36 year-old has lost only three of his thirty-one professional contests and has never been stopped or dropped. In May 2014, the tough Montenegrin proved his resolve by pushing WBO World Champion Arthur Abraham to a twelve-round decision. ’’At this stage of my career my fights are only going to get tougher,’’ said Zeuge. ‘’My job is to keep improving and keep winning. If I continue to do that, my shot at the world title will come sooner rather than later.’’

On April 25, Zeuge will prove whether he is ready to take the next step on his quest to become world champion when he defends his IBF International Championship against Sjekloca. Joining him in action at the Columbia Halle in Berlin are German stars Enrico Koelling (16-1, 6 KOs), Karo Murat (26-2-1, 16 KOs), Noel Gevor (16-0, 9 KOs) and Burak Sahin (6-0, 6 KOs), plus Polish cruiserweight Mateusz Masternak (34-2, 24 KOs). Tickets are available via tickethall.de.

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Tyron Zeuge
Photo Credit: Winfried Mausolf

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Tyron Zeuge, Kalle Sauerland
Photo Credit: Winfried Mausolf

Billy Joe Saunders Declines IBF Title Shot & Inks for Winner of Andy Lee vs Peter Quillin

Billy Joe Saunders has declined an opportunity to fight for the IBF World Middleweight Championship to remain on course for his WBO World title shot.
 
Undefeated Saunders, the IBF number four ranked contender, was this week offered a showdown for the Vacant IBF crown against the number one ranked Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam, after Felix Sturm also passed on the opportunity.
 
The Hatfield sensation, who holds the British, Commonwealth, European and WBO International titles, is the mandatory and number one ranked WBO challenger and has a signed contract with the WBO to fight the winner out of World Champion Andy Lee and former champion Peter Quillin who fight in April.
 
The 25-year-old is grateful to the IBF for offering him the chance to fight for their world title and hopes that it is a belt that he can fight for in his quest to unify the 160lb division.
 
Saunders said, “I was honoured to be asked to fight for the IBF World title, which has been held by some of the greatest fighters in the sports history, and it was not an easy decision to make.  But I have a signed contract with the WBO to fight the winner out of Lee and Quillin and I want to go down that route.  I’m in boxing to prove that I’m a great and bring more world titles back to Britain so I hope that the IBF title is one the I can challenge for in the future in some big unification fights.”