Usyk Suffers Injury
Cruiserweight Final Postponed!
(April 16th) Team Usyk has informed Comosa AG that Mr Usyk suffered a minor elbow injury whilst training for his World Boxing Super Series Final against Murat Gassiev, for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
It has been confirmed by all parties, including Comosa AG appointed independent medical staff, that Mr Usyk is unavailable for the scheduled date of the event, May 11th.
As such, the May 11th event, due to take place in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, has been postponed.
Comosa AG is working in partnership with Team Usyk and Team Gassiev as well as Sela Sport, the local event organisers, to establish a new date for the event.
Comosa AG wishes Mr Usyk a good and speedy recovery. Further information on the rescheduling of the Final will be released in due course.
In the meantime, Comosa AG looks forward to announcing the weight classes that the World Boxing Super Series will employ for Season 2 of the Ali Trophy. Fans can expect to find out the divisions in the coming weeks.
Gassiev Stops Dorticos inTwelve Rounds
Moves to WBSS Cruiserweight Final vs Usyk!
By: Alfred Zimmerman
February 3rd, Bolshoy Ice Dome, Adler, Russia: In the main IBF / WBA Unification fight heading Sauerland Events, World Boxing Super Series Cruiserweight Semi Final, Big Bear, California based Russian, “Iron” Murat Gassiev scored a twelfth-round knockout of Miami, Florida based Cuban, Yunier Dorticos.
Understanding the importance of the moment both corners sent their fighters right to work with Dorticos pushing the action and standing his ground countering with clean punches.
As the action progressed the WBA Champion Dorticos appearing to slow fell right into the IBF World Cruiserweight Champion Gassiev’s patient and calculated game plan staying at a measured punching distance picking his moments controlling the action landing with sharp clean punches thwarting a late Cuban surge rocking Dorticos in round eleven.
In true championship fashion recognizing the all but finished Dorticos was hurt Gassiev stepped it up flooring all but beaten Cuban three times in the twelfth and final round the first two with solid left hooks driving finished Cuban through the ropes with a heavy combination forcing referee Eddie Claudio to immediately wave the fight over at 2:52 of round twelve.
Gassiev improving to 26-0, 19Ko’s advances to the WBSS Finals May 11th when he will take on unbeaten WBO/WBC champion Oleksandr Usyk, 14-0, 11Ko’s Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Dorticos suffering his first loss slips to 21-1, 20Ko’s.
In the semi-main attraction Balashikha, Russia’s Roman Andreev claimed the vacant WBO International Lightweight Title scoring a ninth round TKO stoppage of Blackwood, Wales, Craig Evans.
In a battle of power and attrition the lefty righty altercation saw both fighters establish the strong points in round one.
The heavier handed, plodding pressure fighting Andreev making the most of a zeroed in right hand kept Evans at close range creating some crowd pleasing back and forth action finally turning his right-hand underneath opening the “Welshman’s defense for an unanswered volley of power shots forcing referee Joerg Milke to call it at 1:19 of round nine. Andreev improves to 21-0, 15Ko’s while Evans unbeaten in his last five drops to 17-2-2, 3Ko’s
In a WBSS card filling bout Samara, Russia’s, Maksim Vlasov took possession of the vacant WBC Silver Cruiserweight Title with a ten-round trouncing of Kansas City, Kansas, based Nigerian, Olanrewaju “Gods Power” Durodola.
Vlasov in charge from the start took it out of “God’s” hands pounding Durodola into submission leaving the 37-year-old seated at the bell sounding round eleven.
The 31-year-old, Vlasov improves to 42-2, 25Ko’s while Durodola coming in off back to back KO wins falls to 27-5, 25Ko’s.
Ishikawa, Japan’s, Hurricane Futa claimed the WBC International Lightweight Title shocking Samara, Russia’s, Vage Sarukhanyan suspect chinned champion once in round three and again in round seven with a monster left hook forcing referee Robert Verwijs to immediately wave the bout over at 2:42 of round seven. Futa moves to 24-7-1, 14Ko’s while Sarukhanyan falls to 17-2-1, 4Ko’s.
Burying back to back losses to Felix Sturm and George Groves Serpukhov, Russia's, Fedor Chudinov, stayed on track retaining his WBA International Super Middleweight Title with a seventh-round retirement of Helsinki, Finland’s, Bobby Gunn Jr, late replacement Timo Laine.
The better conditioned 30-year-old Chudinov battled through Laine’s ineffective body work taking apart the fading Finn convincing Laine’s corner call to end it at the close of round seven. Chudinov improves to 17-2, 12Ko’s while Laine drops to 21-10, 6Ko’s.
Novosibirsk, Russia former amateur star Mikhail Aloyan held onto his WBA International Bantamweight Title out pointing Managua, Nicaragua’s previously unbeaten Alexander “Supernova” Espinoza.
Starting well the more polished southpaw, Aloyan draw into a four-round brawl had his hands full with the rough and ready Nicaraguan battling through a tide changing sixth round to a 96-94, 96-95 Aloyan, 96-94 Espinoza split decision win. The light handed Aloyan moves to 4-0 while the under rated Espinoza suffering his first defeat slips to 15-1-2, 7Ko’s.
Usyk Out Points Briedisto Advance
To World Boxing Super Series Cruiserweight Finals!
By: Alfred Zimmerman
January 27th, Arena Riga, Riga, Latvia: In a tightly fought the World Boxing Super Series / WBC/WBO Cruiserweight Unification semi-final event Kiev, Ukraine’s, 2008 and 1012 Olympian, southpaw, Oleksandr Usyk advanced to the finals with a WBC title grabbing twelve round back-and-forth majority decision over Riga’s, previously unbeaten Mairis Briedis.
The mobile 6’3” Usyk started off well establishing his southpaw his jab in round one with the hometown favored Briedis bringing his early body work upstairs in round two.
The often seen right for left southpaw / orthodox trading through a momentarily interrupted accidental clash of heads in round three leading to an extended exchange in round four leaving Usyk claiming a Briedis foul for a low blow closing round four.
Usyk out working his Latvian opponent with a steady work rate in round five would see the straight-ahead WBC Champ return to Usyk’s body in the sixth drawing a warning from referee Kenny Bayless for tossing Usyk to the canvas.
Sticking with their well-established fight plans with Usyk moving forward but keep it deliberate and calculated while Briedis satisfied with his straight-ahead power counter punching it would be the visiting Usyk finishing hard in the twelfth and final round gaining the edge with two judges who scored it 115-113 for Usyk while the third saw it even at 114 a piece making Usyk the twelve-round majority decision winner.
Usyk now set to meet the winner of the winner of the second semifinal between Yunier Dorticos, 22-0, 21Ko’s and Murat Gassiev 25-0, 18Ko’s, February 3rd, at Bolshoy Ice Dome, Adler, Russia improves to 14-0, 11Ko’s while Briedis suffering his first loss dips to 23-1, 18Ko’s.
In the co-feature, Geneva, Switzerland, Yoann Kongolo retained his WBC International Silver Light Heavyweight Title scoring a dominant ten round unanimous decision over Riga, Latvia, Andrejs “Pakum” Pokumeiko.
Kongolo losing out on a referee Daniel Van de Wiele missed knockdown in round one settled finding his range, taking his time dissecting the lethargic “Pakum” battering the durable Latvian for most of the bout sending him to the canvas in round seven and a same round eight count moments later
Kongolo would a point deducted with Pokumeiko suffering a cut over his left eye from an accidental clash of heads.
Unaffected by the point deduction Kongolo would return to the task at hand banging “Pakum” up and down to a 98-90, 98-91 99-89 one way, title holding unanimous decision win. Kongolo improves to 11-0, 4Ko’s while the 28-year-old journeyman Pokumeiko eight bout unbeaten streak ends at 16-13-1, 12Ko’s.
In other action:
In an accuracy don’t count cruiserweight bout Albertslund, Denmark southpaw Micki Nielsen held off Riga, Latvia’s late pushing Ricards Bolotniks for a 78-74 Bolotniks, 77-75 times two Nielsen eight round split decision win.
Nielsen recording his third victory since dropping a ten-round majority decision to Kevin Lerena, October 2016 moves to 25-1, 15Ko’s while Bolotniks six bout victory run comes to a close at 10-4-1, 4Ko’s.
Zagreb, Croatia 2016 Olympic Bronze Medalist heavyweight Filip Hrgovic remained perfect putting Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK’s, Tom Little on the defense in round one and making him pay for his illegitimate attempts at offense with thudding right hands finally battering the out gunned Brit in round four forcing referee Daniel Van de Wiele to call it done at 2:15 of round four. Hrgovic moves to 3-0, 3Ko’s while Little falls to 10-5, 3Ko’s.
In an eight-round scheduled heavyweight bout Sundsvall, Sweden, southpaw, Otto Wallin over powered Trebinje, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s, Srdan Govedarica putting the out gunned Govedarica down twice with drilling lefts
Wallin behind an accurate right jab set up clean straight lefts hands flooring Govedarica once in rounds two and three ending the one-sided affair with a drilling body shot in round three. Wallin improves to 19-0, 13Ko’s while the record padding Govedarica winless in his last three levels out at 6-6, 5Ko’s.
I a six-round light heavyweight match Riga, Latvia, Jevgenijs “Hurricane” Aleksejevs held onto boxing’s beloved zero squeezing out a tougher than expected split decision points win over Tours, France’s Maurice Possiti.
The quicker more skilled Aleksejevs surviving a “hurricane” of Possiti heavy counter rights and a back and forth closing sixth round reaped the rewards of a busier work rate when the judges scores were announced 58-56 once for Possiti and twice for the hometown Aleksejevs keeping the Latvian “Hurricane” unbeaten by way of split decision. Aleksejevs moves to 8-0, 6Ko’s while Possiti 1-4 in his last five drops to 17-13, 7Ko’s.
In a no surprise four round cruiserweight preliminary Shepherd's Bush, London based 22-year-old Nigerian, Mikael Lawal remained unbeaten bouncing Decs, Hungary southpaw, Istvan “Big Brother” Orsos off the deck once in in round two, three and five enroute to a titled 60-51 times three unanimous decision win. Lawal improves to 5-0, 3Ko’s while the professional opponent Orsos winless in his last five continues to get paid at 16-43-2, 6Ko’s.
In four round middleweight action Hamburg, Germany based Armenian Araik Marutjan scored a, I don’t want it you can have it points win over Budapest, Hungary's, Richard Hegyi. Marutjan moves to 2-0 while Hegyi dropping his third straight falls to 4-3, 2Ko’s.
Kongolo and Scandi Stars
Nielsen and Wallin On Usyk vs Briedis Undercard!
(January 23rd) The undercard for the Ali Trophy Semi-Final in Riga on January 27 between Aleksandr Usyk and Mairis Briedis features both established and rising stars.
Switzerland’s Yoann Kongolo (10-0, 4 KOs) will defend his WBC International Silver title against hometown hero Andrejs Pokumeiko (16-12-1, 12 KOs), over ten rounds in the Light Heavyweight division.
The former WBC International Cruiserweight champion, Micki Nielsen (24-1, 15 KOs) from Denmark will take on Latvia’s Ricards Bolotniks (10-3-1, 4 KOs) in an 8-round contest. Nielsen has been sparring with Mairis Briedis in preparation for this bout, and the Danish star hopes to upset the hometown fans and make it three wins in a row.
Undefeated Swedish heavyweight Otto Wallin (18-0, 12 KOs) faces the man-mountain Srdan Govederica (6-5, 5 KOs) from Bosnia.
Undefeated Latvian, Jevgenijs Aleksejevs (7-0, 6 KOs), has made a very impressive start to his professional career so far. But there is no doubt that he faces his toughest test so far in Maurice Possiti (17-12, 7 KOs) from France.
Latvia’s Nikolajs Grisunins (6-0-1, 3 KOs) will aim to return to winning ways when he faces the dangerous big punching Jozsef Darmos (8-1-2, 7 KOs) from Hungary.
In a mouth-watering 8-round Heavyweight contest, 2016 Olympic games Bronze medallist Filip Hrgovic (2-0, 2 KOs) from Croatia meets United Kingdom’s Tom Little (10-4, 3 KOs). Hrgovic has made a very impressive start to his professional career with two sensational first-round KO victories. However, in Little he faces a very confident challenger.
Araik Marutjan (1-0), who represented Germany in the 2016 Olympics takes on the very tough Hungarian Richard Hegyi (4-2, 3 KOs) in a Middleweight contest.
The undercard also features the talented cruiserweight Mikael Lawal (4-0, 3 KOs) from London, United Kingdom, who has been sparring Aleksandr Usyk in preparation for this bout. He takes on the experienced southpaw Istvan Orsos (16-43-2, 5 KOs) from Hungary.
Usyk Q&A: Briedas Is A Bit Boring, But I Respect Him!
(January 21st) WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk (13-0, 11 KOs) talks about his upcoming semi-final against WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (23-0, 18 KOs) at the Arena Riga on January 27.
The Ukrainian superstar went to Berlin in September last year and opened the first season of the World Boxing Super Series by producing a spectacular display at the Max-Schmeling-Arena to stop former world champion Marco Huck in the 10th round.
Usyk’s training camp before the biggest unification fight in years in the cruiserweight division took place in Bukovel, on the ridge-lines of the Carpathian Mountains under the guidance of his trainer Sergey Vatamanyuk.
Now the 2012 Olympic gold medallist is traveling to Riga – to the backyard of the Latvian hero Mairis Briedis.
How are you looking forward to fighting in Riga?
“Let Briedis think about that, not me. All I know is that there will be a lot of my countrymen coming to Riga to support me.”
How big is the fight against Briedis when you look at your career?
“It is a big fight and it is going to be a big day in my career. It’s a unification fight. The fight for the Muhammad Ali Trophy is about the best fighting the best. I have the WBO belt and he has WBC – I like the colour green and the WBC belt is green so I can’t wait to get that belt.”
What do you think of your opponent?
“I have nothing bad to say about Briedis. His style is a bit boring, but I respect him. Briedis is a world champion so he has to be good.”
Why do you respect him?
“In principle, I respect all of my opponents. I even respect Marco Huck who spoke bad about me and pushed me at a press conference. I know what fighters are going through in order to be able to enter the ring. It takes a lot of training, a lot of work and I will always respect that.”
Hrgovic vs Little Light Heavyweight Showdown
Set for Aleksandr Usyk vs Mairis Briedis
World Boxing Super Series Undercard,
January 27th at the Riga Arena in Latvia!
(January 19th) Croatian heavyweight sensation Filip Hrgovic (2-0, 2 KOs) returns to Riga and to the World Boxing Super Series with an eight-round contest against Britain’s Tom Little (10-4, 3 KOs) on the undercard of The Ali Trophy semi-final clash between Aleksandr Usyk and Mairis Briedis on January 27 at the Riga Arena in Latvia.
The 2016 Olympic bronze medallist Hrgovic, returns to happy hunting ground having started his professional career with the first-round KO of Raphael Zumbano Love at the Riga Arena. The 27-year-old followed this up with a second win in Schwerin stopping the previously undefeated Pavel Sour inside the first stanza.
“I’m looking forward to fighting in Riga again,” says Hrgovic. “It’s a great city and a great event. I’m happy to come back here after a successful pro debut in Riga.”
“I’ve been preparing for this fight like it is a World title. I’ve been training and sparring very hard, and I’ll be 100% ready on fight night. My opponent Tom Little seems to be very confident. But whatever he brings, I’m ready for it.”
“I think it will be another 1st round stoppage victory, but I’ll be ready to go the 8-round distance if I need to. If I perform like I know I can, he doesn’t have a chance.”
Little, from Hatfield, England, is on a three-fight win streak, and confident of upsetting the odds and handing Hrgovic his first professional defeat.
“I’ve been waiting years for a chance like this, and I’m over the moon that I’ve finally been given an opportunity on such a massive show,” said Little. “Filip is a big strong boy, but this fight is way too early for him and I’ve seen a few things I can take advantage of. The fight won’t see the 8th round. I’ll bash his face in!”
New Year Fireworks: Usyk and Briedas
Face to Face Kickoff Presser In Riga!
(December 28th) WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk (13-0, 11 KOs) and WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (23-0, 18 KOs) had their first face-off in Riga before the Ali Trophy semi-final bout in the Latvian capital on January 27th.
“Briedis is a good fighter, but the only thing he has that I want is his belt,” said Usyk. “I am looking forward to fighting in Riga, it’s going to be a great event. I am sure there will be a lot of people coming from Ukraine to support me. People can look forward to an entertaining fight between two world champions both eager to qualify for the final and win the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
Said Mairis Briedis: “It is one of my dreams as a fighter to be part of one of the greatest fights of all time. I hope this fight will be a Hall of Fame fight. It has all the ingredients to become a classic.”
“Usyk was excellent as an amateur and he has been great as a professional, so it will be a tough challenge, but I believe that I have what it takes to beat him.”
“It is lovely to be in Riga,” said Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer Kalle Sauerland. “This fight will be the biggest sports event ever on Latvian soil. We have to world champions, two amazing contenders, two sensational athletes. Briedis, the national hero of Latvia, the WBC Champion vs. Usyk, an Olympic Champion and World Champion. So the stage is set for a night full of drama.”
This biggest cruiserweight unification fight for several years takes place at the Arena Riga. The same place where Mairis Briedis booked his place in the semi-final by outpointing Mike Perez in front of a sold-out crowd of 10.000 fans.
His Ukrainian opponent went to Berlin in in the tournament opener and produced a spectacular display at the Max-Schmeling-Arena to stop former world champion Marco Huck in the 10th round.
(December 6th) The Ali Trophy semi-final bout in the cruiserweight edition of the World Boxing Super Series between WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk (13-0, 11 KOs) and WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (23-0, 18 KOs) hits the Arena Riga, Latvia on January 27, 2018.
“The stand-out atmosphere in the quarter-finals was the noise the fans made in the sold-out Arena Riga,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer.
“We are very excited to bring the Ali Trophy to Latvia on January 27. Usyk is Olympic Champion, World Champion and the number one seed in the tournament but when he collides with national hero and World Champion Briedis he will meet by far his toughest challenge in his career. This is the biggest unification fight in the division since many, many years.”
2012 Olympic Champion, 30-year-old Usyk expressed before the tournament his desire to unify the belts in the cruiserweight division and to take home the Muhammad Ali Trophy. And he kicked off in style:
The Ukrainian went to Berlin in Germany on September 9 in the tournament opener and produced a spectacular display at the Max-Schmeling-Arena to stop former world champion Marco Huck in the 10th round. Now he travels to another opponent’s backyard to face a current champion.
“I do not care where I fight,” said Usyk, the tournament’s number one seed.
“In Riga, there will be 10.000 fans and that’s great. The fans should expect a beautiful and interesting battle between two world champions.”
32-year-old Briedis excited an ecstatic hometown crowd at a sold-out Arena Riga on September 30 to score a unanimous decision in his quarter-final over the tough Cuban challenger Mike Perez.
“I had a gut feeling that the World Boxing Super Series might return to Riga because of the incredible crowd at the Arena Riga in the quarter-final bout against Mike Perez,” said Briedis, the tournament’s third seed.
“I’m really happy with how it has turned out. I am thankful to the Latvian fans who made it possible by being so passionate and devoted. Now it’s all about preparing for Usyk and put up a great show when January comes.”
Usyk and Briedis will soon come face-to-face at a kickoff press conference in Riga and tickets for the Ali Trophy semi-final between are going on sale next week with the exact time to be announced shortly. Fans are asked due to the huge demand to sign-up for ticket alerts at worldboxingsuperseries.com to avoid disappointment.
(December 5th) The Ali Trophy semi-final bout in the cruiserweight edition of the World Boxing Super Series between IBF World Champion Murat Gassiev (25-0, 18 KOs) and WBA World Champion Yunier Dorticos (22-0, 21 KOs) takes place at the Bolshoy Ice Dome in Sochi, Russia on February 3, 2018.
“The consistent growth of our tournament concept keeps attracting major sports investors. Comosa is very proud to bring the Ali Trophy semi-final to Sochi,” said Comosa’s CEO, Roberto Dalmiglio.
“This fight is a very special one,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer:
“The level in the Ali Trophy tournament is already of the very highest, but when you have two such decorated boxers with massive KO power then the only guaranteed winner is the fans.
Two World Champions collide in Sochi, this special Olympic City. Russia hold tight for the Ali Trophy experience, the lights and stars are on their way!”
Murat ‘Iron’ Gassiev, the Russian second seed, earned his spot in the semi-final when he blew away Polish Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in New Jersey in October with a powerful performance to produce a third-round KO.
“The location for the semi-final was not important for me, but the fact that it will be in Russia and the beautiful city of Sochi makes me very glad,” said Gassiev.
“This means my family and friends and a lot of people from my home region of Ossetia will be attending. Also, it is always an honour and pleasure to fight in front of my countrymen,” said the 24-year-old and expresses a lot of respect for his upcoming challenge.
“Dorticos is a very good dangerous fighter. It is going to be great to test my skills against an opponent like him. I am confident we will deliver great boxing for fans around the world.”
Cuban Dorticos aka ‘The KO Doctor’, the tournament’s fourth seed, impressed in his quarter-final with a devastating KO victory in the third round over Russian Dmitri Kudryashov in San Antonio in September. And he predicts another jaw-dropping output against another Russian in the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
“I am looking forward to fighting in Sochi. No matter where I fight, I will work hard to take my opponent out,” said 31-year-old Dorticos who is fighting out of Miami, USA.
“I believe I am the best in the world and the future winner of the Muhammad Ali Trophy. I can’t wait to show Gassiev and the fans in Russia and all over the world what ‘The KO Doctor’ is about!”
The cruiserweight final of the World Boxing Super Series will take place in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia in May 2018.
Tickets for the Ali Trophy semi-final between Gassiev and Dorticos are going on sale later this month. Fans are asked to sign-up for ticket alerts at worldboxingsuperseries.com to avoid disappointment.
(November 13th) WBA World Champion Yunier Dorticos (22-0, 21 KOs) is preparing for the fight of his career against IBF World Champion Murat Gassiev (25-0, 18 KOs) in the Ali Trophy semi-final and wants to make a statement to fight fans all over the world.
A World Boxing Super Series poll shows fans having the most trust in Usyk (74%), Gassiev (10%) and Briedis (9%) to win the Muhammad Ali Trophy in the cruiserweight division. That leaves seven percent for the Miami-based Cuban who views his odds quite differently.
“I have noticed the poll giving Usyk, Gassiev and Briedis a better chance than me to win the Muhammad Ali Trophy, but in my next fight I will have the last word and prove the poll wrong,” said Dorticos.
“I do not compare myself to anyone. I compete with myself. When I am training I hit the bag as if I was fighting with someone.”
“I am preparing my body and soul for the most important fight in my career. Because the only thing I’m going to accept is the victory. My family have deposited their trust and believe in me and I am going to pay back with a victory.”
Dorticos aka ‘The KO Doctor’ stunned in his quarter-final with a devastating KO victory in the third round over Russian Dmitri Kudryashov in San Antonio in September. And he predicts another jaw-dropping output against another Russian, Murat Gassiev, who blew away Polish Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in New Jersey in October with a powerful performance that also produced a third-round KO.
“The truth is I have no words to express my joy after my victory over Kudryashov,” said Dorticos.
“I have worked hard to be able to be a part of this tournament, I have worked hard to be able to prove that I am the best cruiserweight in the world. I believe I am the best in the world, and I can’t wait to fight again and show the fans all over the world once again what ‘The KO Doctor’ is about.”
“I’m ready to show Gassiev what a champion looks like and give him a challenge he’s never faced before. I want to take his belt. In other words; Gassiev is my next victim.”
Fight date and venue for Gassiev vs Dorticos will be announced in the coming weeks, with tickets going on sale later this month. Fans are asked to sign-up for ticket alerts at worldboxingsuperseries.com to avoid disappointment.
By: Mike Rivers
October 21st, Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey: In the fourth and final round of Sauerland Events and Ringstar Sports World Boxing Super Series final cruiserweight quarterfinal Big Bear, California, based Russian, IBF World Cruiserweight Champion Murat “Iron” Gassiev retained his title and advances to the semi-finals a “breath taking” third round knockout of Piaseczno, Poland, former IBF and WBC Cruiserweight Champion Krzysztof “Diablo” Wlodarczyk.
Moving through the accustom tentative feeling out first round Gassiev would being to build his pressure taking control of the center of the ring putting the cautious “Diablo” into a circling safety first defensive counter punching mode.
Gassiev pressing the fight, patiently walking Wlodarczyk through a round of laps closed the distance and cut off the ring in the third backing “Diablo” to the ropes for a vicious set of lefts an uppercut and following liver shot crumbling Wlodarczyk to the canvas for a full referee Earl Brown ten count at 1:57 of round three. Gassiev now set to face unbeaten Cuban banger Yunier Dorticos, 22-0, 21Ko’s improves to 25-0, 18Ko’s while the departing Wlodarczyk dips to 53-4-1, 37 Ko’s.
In the ten-round cruiserweight co-feature Wroclaw, Poland’s, Mateusz “Master” Masternak overwhelmed, battered and stopped New, York’s, Stivens “Superman” Bujaj after seven.
The more skilled and better prepared Masternak put on a one sided “Masterpiece” tearing Bujaj up and down landing clean right hands finally chopping down the shorter, ducking and dodging New Yorker with long kryptonite right hand putting Bujaj on a knee for a referee Shada Murdaugh eight count leading the bout to be called after a referee initiated doctors visit of an apathetic beaten “Superman” between rounds seven and eight. Masternak improves to 40-4, 27Ko’s while Bujaj dropping back to back fights falls to 16-2-1, 11Ko’s.
In other action:
Warsaw, Poland, super welterweight, Maciej Sulecki scored a contentious ten round unanimous decision over Darmstadt, Germany, Jack “Golden” Culcay.
Following a familiar feeling out first round it was the “Golden” one pushing the action, closing the distance working his way inside Sulecki’s jab landing a sign of things to come right hand to close round two.
Round three would see Sulecki respond in turn leading to some solid back and forth action in round three closing out the first half with Sulecki leaving Culcay cut over his left eye.
After a respite round six, the fight defined in halves would see a recharged Culcay come battling back drawing Sulecki into an open fire fight in round seven. Sulecki down but ruled a slip would reignite Culcay pushing the fight to the end landing clean heavy shots only to be met by a counter responding Sulecki bringing the fight to an exciting close after which to the displeasure of many ringside the closely contested battle would be announced 96-94, 98-92, 97-93 all for Sulecki making him the ten round unanimous decision winner. Sulecki remains unbeaten at 26-0, 10Ko’s while Culcay coming off a controversial split decision loss to Demetrius Andrade in March slips to 22-3, 11Ko’s.
In the evening opener Fort Worth, Texas, super welterweight Skender Halili scored a one way 60-54 times three battering of Silver Spring, Maryland’s, Samuel Amoako. Halili moves to 15-2, 13Ko’s while Amoaka drops to 23-16, 17Ko’s.
Fort Mitchell, Alabama, 19-year-old, super welterweight Money Powell IV picking himself up from an early first round flash knockdown to turn the tide out boxing and out scoring Oakland, California, southpaw Brandon Adams to a zero saving 59-55, 59-56, 58-55 unanimous decision win. The highly touted Powell IV improves to 5-0, 3Ko’s while the over matched Adams drops to 4-5-1, 2Ko’s.
Houston, Texas, based Nigerian, heavyweight Efe Ajagba made it two straight dropping Kentucky’s Luke Lyons twice in round one forcing referee Harvey Dock to call it done at 2:19 of round one. Ajagba moves to 2-0, 2Ko;’s while the previously unbeaten Lyons drops to 5-1, 2Ko’s.
(October 17th) The World Boxing Super Series Cruiserweight Final will be held in Jeddah in Saudi Arabia in May 2018 following an agreement signed in London between World Boxing Super Series organiser and owner Comosa AG and The General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia. The date and venue for the Final will be announced in due time.
The Muhammad Ali trophy will be awarded to the winner of the contest in the final stage of the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series, which has seen growing worldwide attention and broadcast coverage across more the 60 countries since its launch and Gala Draw in Monaco back in July.
Turki Al-Alsheikh, President of The General Sports Authority: “This agreement is part of our broader commitment and work to develop the sport of boxing in Saudi Arabia. Having the first final of such a high profile and groundbreaking tournament take place in Saudi Arabia is a key milestone for us, and will be one of many major sports events to take place in the Kingdom next year.”
“The interest in boxing amongst the young generation is there and growing rapidly, which is why the GSA is also working to form a grassroots partnership with one of the largest international boxing federations to promote the sport. Our involvement in the Muhammad Ali trophy is the perfect way to step up our engagement in boxing, given how popular and well respected this great sporting athlete has always been.”
Roberto Dalmiglio, CEO of Comosa: “This is fantastic news, not just for World Boxing Super Series but for boxing and for the sport in Saudi Arabia. We have seen huge and growing interest in the World Boxing Super Series from fight fans, broadcasters, commercial partners and venue owners from the major boxing markets around the world. The competition to host the cruiserweight final has been fierce, and we are delighted to be able to announce the winner.”
“I am sure that Saudi Arabia will lay on a fitting finale to the first year of the WBSS and first award of the Muhammad Ali trophy! We are proud to be working with the Saudi General Sports Authority on what will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of the 2018 sporting calendar in Jeddah.”
Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer: “The Muhammad Ali trophy is going from strength to strength and, with the cruiserweight division featuring all four federation world champions, the undisputed champion will be crowned next May. We will also feature local fighters on the undercard to help promote the sport locally.“
“The Muhammad Ali name and legacy is so revered in Saudi Arabia, and Ali himself fought his greatest battles (‘The Thriller in Manila’ and ‘The Rumble in the Jungle’) in locations not normally associated with boxing, so it is fitting to bring big-time boxing to Jeddah in the name of the Greatest of All Time.”
The first fights of the World Boxing Super Series took place in September and three of the four quarterfinals in the Cruiserweight division has already taken place. 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist and current WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk kicked off the cruiserweight tournament by spectacularly stopping Marco Huck, a former record-breaking World Champion himself, in the 10th round in Berlin.
WBA World Champion Yunier Dorticos defeated number one ranked Dmitry Kudryashov with a sensational second-round knockout in San Antonio. Finally, hometown hero Mairis Briedis outpointed Cuba’s Mike Perez in Riga to retain his WBC world title belt and set up a semi-final clash with Aleksandr Usyk.
Next up is Russia’s IBF World Champion Murat Gassiev against Poland’s former world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in Newark, New Jersey on Saturday, with the winner to face Yunier Dorticos. The venues of both semi-finals, which are expected to take place in the second half of January next year, will be announced in due course.
(October 10th) IBF Cruiserweight World Champion Murat “Iron” Gassiev shared his thoughts from training camp in Big Bear, Calif., as fight week nears for his World Boxing Super Series quarter-final showdown Saturday, October 21 against Krzysztof Wlodarczyk from Prudential Center in Newark, N.J and on AUDIENCE Network.
Gassiev first arrived to train in the U.S. in 2014 and has worked with the renowned Abel Sanchez, eventually capturing his title with a victory over Denis Lebedev in December 2016.
“Abel is an amazing guy and he has pushed me very hard in the gym,” said Gassiev. “He’s really a father figure here in the gym. I have so much respect for him and the way that he treats people. The best thing that I ever did was come here to train with Abel Sanchez.
“We have very hard and intense training, but this is not ballet. He’s preparing me for battle and I trust that he knows exactly what we need to do to have success.”
“There are no world champions in my gym,” said Sanchez. “Your belts stay at home. My gym is just a place to work and get better. I can already see the improvements in this training camp for Gassiev. He had Lebedev down but didn’t finish him. Moments like that, you have to finish the job.”
The 23-year-old from Vladikavkaz, Russia had a winding road to success in the squared circle, but quickly embraced the sport upon picking it up at 15-years-old.
“Boxing was actually not my first sport,” said Gassiev. “My city has produced lots of Olympic and world champion wrestlers, so that was my first sport. Then I tried soccer, but that wasn’t quite right either. One day I went to a boxing gym with my friend and right away I knew, this was what I needed. Eight years later, and I’m very happy where I am.”
Gassiev has trained alongside the likes of middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin up in the unique atmosphere and altitude of Big Bear.
“It’s very important to be in a place like this because the only focus is training,” said Gassiev. “This is what we do all day. This is exactly what I need to be at my best and win this tournament. I don’t see my family for a long time, but it’s part of my life. This is my business and I’m doing all of this for my family.
“We have a very diverse group of fighters here in Big Bear. We’re all family and support each other. It’s been a great experience for me and I’ve learned a lot about different cultures.
“Some guys who come in for sparring in Big Bear really don’t anticipate how the altitude changes things. They think they can fight 10 rounds, but after three it is too much. This is the best place to prepare for tough fights.”
“This has been a really smooth camp,” said Sanchez. “I haven’t had any more problems with sparring partners vanishing after a couple days in the ring with Gassiev. We have the tools to make him even better than in his last performance.”
The winner of the Gassiev vs. Wlodarczyk fight will meet WBA champion Yunier Dorticos in a unification showdown in the WBSS semi-finals. However, Gassiev knows he cannot look past the two-time champion standing in his way in the quarter-finals.
“I know that I have to prepare myself for a tough fight,” said Gassiev. “I’m facing an experienced fighter and it’ll be a great test for my career. I’m ready for this.
“I have worked hard in this sport to become a world champion. I believed in myself and in my team. This tournament gives me the opportunity to be a unified champion and to fight the best fighters to prove it. I will show everyone who I am.”
“This tournament is a peculiar beast and there are no second chances,” said Sanchez. “I’ve always hoped for a great tournament where each fight is tougher than the last. I have big respect for Wlodarczyk and his trainer, but Gassiev has to knock him out if the chance arrives. I’m expecting this to be another great experience for Gassiev.”
Promoted by Ringstar Sports in association with World Boxing Super Series, tickets for the live event are on sale now and are available at Ticketmaster.com. Tickets are also available to purchase at the Prudential Center box office.
Featured bouts on October 21 will see Polish contender Mateusz Masternak facing once-beaten Stivens Bujaj in a WBSS cruiserweight reserve match and unbeaten Polish contender Maciej Sulecki taking on former title challenger Jack Culcay.
Gassiev vs. Wlodarczyk undercard
Local prospect Julian Rodriguez (16-0, 10 KOs) returns to the ring as the New Jersey-native defends his perfect record in a six-round welterweight bout that highlights an exciting night of undercard attractions on Saturday, October 21 from Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Promoted by Ringstar Sports in association with World Boxing Super Series, tickets for the live event are on sale now and are available at Ticketmaster.com. Tickets are also available to purchase at the Prudential Center box office.
The October 21 event is headlined by the World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight quarterfinal showdown between IBF Champion Murat Gassiev and former cruiserweight world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk live on AUDIENCE Network. Featured bouts also include Polish contender Mateusz Masternak facing once-beaten Stivens Bujaj in a WBSS cruiserweight reserve match and unbeaten Polish contender Maciej Sulecki taking on former title challenger Jack Culcay.
Also competing in undercard bouts are 2016 Lithuanian Olympian Eimantas Stanionis (3-0, 3 KOs), who enters the ring for an eight-round welterweight fight, 2016 Nigerian Olympian Efe Ajaba (1-0, 1 KO) in a six-round heavyweight showdown and rising unbeaten prospect Money Powell IV (4-0, 3 KOs) against Detroit’s Antonio Urista (9-2, 2 KOs) in a six-round super welterweight affair.
Rounding out the night of fights is powerful super welterweight Skender Halili (14-2, 13 KOs) of Kosovo in a six-round bout against Samuel Amoako (19-15, 16 KOs) and Nigerian cruiserweight Efetobor Apochi (2-0, 2 KOs) in a four-round fight against Lawrence Gabriel (1-1-1).
Representing Hasbrouck Heights, N.J., Rodriguez had a stellar amateur career that included a 2013 National Golden Gloves title, a 2012 U.S. Amateur Championships silver medal and a spot as an alternate on the 2012 U.S. Olympic team. The 22-year-old has continued to impress since turning pro in 2013, delivering knockouts in nine of his first 10 fights. Rodriguez has picked up victories over Jerry Belmontes and Dario Ferman in 2017 and will fight in his home state for the first time since he stopped Peter Oluoch in round one at Prudential Center in May 2015.
An accomplished amateur representing Kaunas, Lithuania, Stanionis is looking to become the next Eastern European fighter to make a splash in the U.S. The 23-year-old had a 141-19 record as an amateur and earned four senior national championships before winning gold at the European Olympic Qualifier to earn his trip to the 2016 Games. A gold medalist at welterweight at the 2015 European Amateur Boxing Championships, Stanionis has impressed with knockouts in his first three starts since turning pro in April, including a first round destruction of Oscar Valenzuela in September.
The 23-year-old Ajagba is set to turn pro after beating the odds and making the 2016 Rio Olympics to represent his native Nigeria. Although he lost in the quarterfinals, Ajagba made a splash by delivering a highlight reel knockout in his opening bout against Trinidad and Tobago. The fighter known as “King Kong” also won an African games gold medal during his impressive amateur career delivered a first round knockout in his pro debut in July.
Born in Germany, where his former boxer father was stationed in the military, Powell IV dedicated himself to boxing for good when his family moved back to the U.S. in 2011. The 19-year-old has quickly made a name for himself since then, winning the 2016 Youth Welterweight National Championship to earn the top ranking in the 152-pound division by USA Boxing. Fighting out of Fort Mitchell, on the state line of Alabama and Georgia, Powell has scored stoppage victories in three of his four pro victories.
(October 3rd) IBF Cruiserweight World Champion Murat Gassiev is full of praise for both Mairis Briedis and Mike Perez.
Murat Gassiev watched with interest as Mairis Briedis defeated Mike Perez via unanimous decision in the World Boxing Super Series in Riga, Latvia on Saturday night.
And the Russian IBF World Champion is full of praise for both combatants and fellow participants in the Ali Trophy cruiserweight tournament.
“The fight went the distance which is the reason why the fans could say it was boring but it was not,” said ‘Iron’ Murat Gassiev.
“Perez was doing great. His stamina was there. His speed was there. He was motivated. He lost but the fact is now we have a very dangerous fighter in our division. I think he is capable of becoming a mandatory challenger in the near future.”
Murat Gassiev was impressed by WBC world champion Mairis Briedis’ ability to adjust.
“Briedis showed that he is master of his craft. He showed that he is able to adjust to any situation in the ring,” said Gassiev.
“If you try to back him up he has a good defence. If you work from a distance, he is ready too. If you want the inside work with some of Marko Huck’s elements — he’s ready. He’s ready for everything. I think that Briedis’ uppercuts and dirty boxing surprised Perez.”
Murat Gassiev will undoubtedly watch Mairis Briedis again in the upcoming clash against WBO world champion Aleksandr Usyk in the semifinal:
“His fight with Usyk will be very interesting. Those who think that Usyk is going have an easy fight are wrong. I look forward to it, he says.
Murat Gassiev steps into the World Boxing Super Series when he faces off against Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in the final cruiserweight quarterfinal on October 21 at Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
The winner will face WBA world champion Yunier Dorticos in a unification fight in the semifinal.
(September 26th) The World Boxing Super Series has delivered three very different but all extremely exciting and entertaining fights. There is much more to come, promises Kalle Sauerland, Chief Boxing Officer of tournament organizer Comosa AG.
“I’m certain we’ll be able to enjoy another fantastic night of boxing and a stunning event in Riga this Saturday,” said Kalle Sauerland.
“The fight between Mairis Briedis and Mike Perez will provide even more breathtaking boxing entertainment, that’s what happens when the Ali Trophy arrives in town!”
The World Boxing Super Series kicked off in July at the Draft Gala in Monaco when 16 fighters across two weight divisions were paired in quarterfinal bouts.
So far we have seen three of those fights. Olympic Gold Medallist and current WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk kicked off the cruiserweight tournament by spectacularly stopping Marco Huck, a former record breaking World Champion himself, in the 10th round in Berlin.
That was followed by Callum Smith’s unanimous decision against Erik Skoglund in the super middleweight division in Liverpool for the WBC Diamond Belt and a place in the Semi Finals, and most recently WBA World Champion Yunier Dorticos defeated number one ranked Dmitry Kudryashov with a sensational second round knockout in San Antonio.
“I think it’s been fantastic entertainment,” says Kalle Sauerland.
“Aleksandr Usyk’s extreme quality and Marco Huck’s bravery got us off to a great start in Berlin and then we saw a very intriguing 50/50 Super Middleweight Championship fight between Callum Smith and Erik Skoglund in Liverpool, he adds.
“The way those two handled themselves in and out of the ring was great to see for anyone involved in the sport of boxing.”
“Dorticos against Kudryashov was always going to provide fireworks and so it proved. We’ve enjoyed three very different but all very entertaining fights so far. Thankfully, there is much more to come.”
“The World Boxing Super Series has been dubbed ‘the Champions League of boxing’ and the reception from the media, broadcasters and most importantly the fans has been amazing every where we go. I keep being told how much they’re enjoying the competition so far – all I can say is “so am I”.
“The sporting level has been truly world class and the brand of the World Boxing Super Series is growing rapidly day by day. We could not have hoped for a better start.”
Kalle Sauerland reveals that Comosa AG and its partners are working hard to ensure that fans can continue to enjoy the World Boxing Super Series.
“Along with our partners we are making minor adjustments along the way to make the experience of going to the events even better for fight fans. That will also benefit all of the fans watching the events on TV or via streaming from around the world.”
“For example we are working on improving even further the experience for the fans at the venue, with our own dedicated Arena TV so that the evening gets even more of a storyline for the on site fans which will only add to the already amazing atmospheres that have been generated. We are taking the experience to a whole new level not just for the television viewers with our revolutionary productions, light shows and side programming but also for the fans at the venue so that they too receive a more 360 degree experience.”
(September 10th) Aleksandr Usyk defeated Marco Huck via 10th round TKO and advanced to the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series, successfully retaining his WBO World Cruiserweight title in the process.
In the semi-finals, the tournament favourite Usyk will face the winner of Mairis Briedis versus Mike Perez, which takes place on September 30 in Riga, Latvia.
“I think Briedis will beat Perez, so next man up is probably Briedis,” said Usyk.
The cruiserweight tournament’s number one seed from Ukraine produced a dominant display on Saturday night at the Max-Schmeling-Halle in Berlin, which ended with the referee stepping in to stop the encounter and save Huck from further punshment.
“Huck pushed me at the press conference in fight week and tried to get into my head, but I am cold as ice when in comes to mind-games. I do the talking in the ring, and I was the better fighter. I was never really hurt and felt in control.”
“I would like to thank the tournament for the opportunity to unify all the belts in cruiserweight and win the Muhammad Ali Trophy. Now I am one step closer.”
“We were able to deliver a very good fight,” said Huck. “I believe I hurt Usyk in the first rounds, but in the end the pressure became too much. I will now take some holiday and decide how to move on from this.”
(September 10th) World Boxing Super Series action comes to the east coast as the cruiserweight quarter-final showdown between IBF Champion Murat “Iron” Gassiev (24-0, 17 KOs) and former world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (53-3-1, 37 KOs) is set for Saturday, October 21 at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Promoted by Ringstar Sports in association with World Boxing Super Series, tickets for the live event are on sale now and are available at Ticketmaster.com. Tickets will also be available to purchase at the Prudential Center box office beginning Monday, September 11 at 11 a.m.
“It’s a great pleasure to promote this exciting World Boxing Super Series matchup,” said Richard Schaefer, Chairman and CEO of Ringstar Sports. “Murat Gassiev is clearly one of the top cruiserweights in the world but he will have a great obstacle against the battle-tested former champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk, who will have a big boost from the raucous Polish fans in New Jersey. Prudential Center is the perfect venue for this event and I know that the fans will enjoy this matchup as both men vie for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
“It’s so exciting that the Ali Trophy is coming to a fighting place like New Jersey,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer. “Hold tight and enjoy the ride, October 21 is going to be a unique experience, think ‘Game of Thrones’ meets boxing. Can’t wait!”
A full slate of undercard bout will be announced soon.
“I promise that I’m going to come to the ring to win and do everything possible to get this victory,” said Gassiev. “I want to take advantage of this opportunity to fight the best boxers in my weight class.”
“I have a very serious opponent in Krzysztof Wlodarczyk who is a two-time world champion and his resume speaks for itself. He has fought the best and I’m looking forward to a very hard fight.”
“It is a great honor for me to fight in the World Boxing Super Series for the Muhammad Ali Trophy,” said Wlodarczyk. “I trained for two weeks in the Polish mountains and now I am back in Warsaw putting in the work for October 21.”
“I am very happy to have the opportunity to fight a champion like Murat Gassiev. He is a young, strong champion like I was a few years ago but I am ready to show that I am still the best in the division.”
One of the hardest punchers in the sport, Gassiev trains with Abel Sanchez in Big Bear, California and hails from Vladikavkaz, Russia. The 23-year-old made his U.S. debut in 2015 and delivered four straight knockout victories, including a “Knockout of the Year” contender when he flattened Jordan Schimmel in the first round in May 2016. Gassiev then challenged Denis Lebedev in Russia last December and was able to drop the champion on his way to winning the IBF title.
Fighting out of Piaseczno, Poland, Wlodarczyk first became a world champion when he defeated Steve Cunningham in 2006 to capture the IBF crown. After fighting to a draw against WBC Champion Giacobbe Fragomeni in 2009, Wlodarczyk stopped Fragomeni in their 2010 rematch to become a champion again. He would go on to defend the title six times and enters his October 21 matchup on a four fight winning streak.
(September 7th) Modern Times Group (MTG) has acquired the exclusive rights for Viaplay and Viasat in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to broadcast the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS). WBSS is a new revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament featuring the world`s best boxers and a total of $50 million in prize money.
Boxing Fans will have the chance to see Live coverage of the Tournament including the WBC World Champion, Mairis Briedis. The battle for Muhammad Ali Trophy in the cruiserweight division comes to Riga, Latvia on September 30 when the World Champion faces Mike Perez in their quarter-final bout at the Riga Arena.
Sandra Kraujina, Head of Sports MTG Baltics: “We are excited to be a part of this event and happy that we have a chance to bring World Class Boxing events to Baltics via Viaplay and Viasat platforms. We believe there are a great number of quality boxing fans in the Baltic States looking for unique and exciting boxing action. By signing exclusive contract with WBSS, we are responding to our viewers’ demand and we hope that not only boxing fans will find WBSS interesting to watch”.
MP & Silva’s CEO, Jochen Lösch, said: “I’m delighted that a world class media group like MTG will broadcast every fight in the World Boxing Super Series. This will be a fantastic tournament, and I’m sure boxing fans will enjoy watching this elite competition.”
Roger Lodewick, COMOSA’s Chief Commercial Officer: “Having a strong partner in the Baltics was key for us, and we feel that MTG Baltics is that partner. Boxing is very popular in the territory, and we are very confident that with MTG Baltics we have a perfect partner to bring world class boxing to the people in the Baltics.”
Media rights agreement was signed for full season, with 14 live broadcasts from September 2017 to May 2018. WBSS tournament quarterfinals will take place during the months of September and October. Tentatively, the semi-finals will be staged in January and February 2018, before the respective finals in May. MP & Silva, the sports media rights agency, acted as the sales agent on behalf of the World Boxing Super Series.
There are two divisions set for season 1, with 16 participants and two alternates for each bracket — cruiserweight and super middleweight. The knockout format of the competition will see the best boxers eventually compete for the Muhammad Ali Trophy, the greatest prize in boxing.
Millions of fans will be enjoying the action world of class boxing within 9 months’ time frame. An expert panel invited the world’s best boxers to compete, namely the top 15-ranked fighters of the four major federations: WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO.
COMOSA AG is pleased to announce that MTG (Modern Times Group) will be the exclusive home in the Nordic region of the World Boxing Super Series. Starting on 9 September, fight fans can follow every punch live as the world’s top cruiserweight and super middleweight boxers compete for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
The World Boxing Super Series will be of particular interest to the Swedish audience this season as the quarter-final line-ups include Swedish undefeated superstar Erik Skoglund who will start his battle for the Muhammad Ali Trophy against Callum Smith in the Super Middleweight division on Saturday 16 September in Liverpool. The fights will be shown on a combination of MTG’s Nordic TV channels and streaming service Viaplay.
Roger Lodewick, COMOSA’s Chief Commercial Officer: “MTG has been a visionary and long-term partner of many sports properties and we are privileged to have them as our partner in the Nordics. With MTG’s experience and unique position as a live sport broadcaster, the market is set to enlarge the interest in boxing and to establish the World Boxing Super Series as the premium boxing product in the market.”
Peter Nørrelund, MTG EVP and CEO of MTG Sport: “This tournament is what boxing fans everywhere have been dreaming about – an elimination format with the best fighting the best for a prize named after the greatest fighter of all time. Nine of the boxers taking part have never lost a fight, and the combined record for all 16 participants is an astonishing 423 wins and 294 KOs. Get ready to rumble as we bring fantastic live fight action to our platforms across the Nordic and Baltic regions – the recent Mayweather vs McGregor fight was MTG’s most successful ever, so we are even more excited about what’s to come.”
The World Boxing Super Series is a first of its kind annual boxing tournament, and will bring together the ‘best of the best’ fighters to compete at venues around the world for the Muhammad Ali trophy, The Greatest prize In Boxing. A total of 16 elite boxers from two weight classes (Cruiserweight and Super Middleweight) will battle it out on fourteen separate fight nights in a bracket-style elimination tournament – with the winner in each division crowned in May 2018.
Nielsen and Ryder
To Clash on Groves / Cox Undercard!
(August 31st) Danish super middleweight star Patrick Nielsen (29-1, 14 KOs) will meet London’s John Ryder (24-4, 12 KOs, 15 KOs) over ten rounds on the undercard of the World Boxing Super Series quarter-final contest between ‘Saint’ George Groves and Jamie Cox on October 14 at The SSE Arena, Wembley in London.
Nielsen, a former World title challenger, has been confirmed as a reserve for the first-round of the inaugural Muhammad Ali Trophy. The 26-year-old from Albertslund, who is currently ranked World number one with the WBA has revealed his excitement to be taking on Ryder in the British boxer’s backyard.
“I’m really looking forward to getting in the ring again,’’ he said. ‘’I’m excited to be facing such a good boxer because a good opponent, like John Ryder, will give me the opportunity to showcase what I’m capable of.
“Ryder is a bit shorter than me and he likes to come forward to fight. He’s not afraid of getting into a brawl, which suits me well. He is going to be one of the toughest opponents of my career, but I still expect to be victorious.
“To beat a guy like him in front of his home fans will be a real the statement I have been hoping to make this year. I just cannot wait to get in there!”
Former WBA International Champion and British title challenger, Ryder, is looking to bounce back after dropping a controversial split decision to Rocky Fielding on April 22, and the 29 year-old Londoner says he is pleased to be involved in yet another 50-50 fight.
“I’ve been fighting on the road quite a lot recently. I’ve been in Glasgow, Manchester and Liverpool; so it will be nice to be at Wembley and get a win in front of my home fans”, said Ryder.
“Nielsen’s been around for a while now, but I haven’t actually seen much of him. I know that he has been well-matched throughout his career. His only loss came against Dmitrii Chudinov, who is a good level fighter.
“This is by no means an easy fight, but I’m not in boxing for easy fights. I’ve been involved in many hard fights and fights that people will remember me for. I can never be accused of ducking people and I have always fought the best.”
“I’m going to push Nielsen all the way, and I think I will beat him. I have boxed the likes of Billy Joe Saunders and other former champions, but Nielsen is the one in front of me this time. I respect him, but come fight night I will be trying to take his head off!”
Ryder and Nielsen provide chief support for the quarter-final clash between WBA Super Champion Groves and domestic rival Cox, and Ryder believes the fans can expect a thrilling encounter between the British pair.
“I think Groves-Cox is a great fight”, said Ryder. “I don’t think we’ve seen the best of Cox yet and we all know how good Groves is, so it will make for a cracking fight. The WBSS looks fantastic. I was a big fan of the Super Six but the WBSS seems to have a much better structure and is easier to follow.’’
Tickets for Groves vs. Cox are on sale ranging from £35 to £130 at stubhub.co.uk at axs.com.
Q & A with George Groves!
(August 31st) WBA Super World Super Middleweight champion George Groves (26-3, 19 KOs) is hungrier than ever and wants to cross off more achievements on his bucket list. First, he has to get pass ‘ballsy’ Jamie Cox (24-0,13 KOs) in a Muhammad Ali Trophy quarter-final clash October 14 at The SSE Arena Wembley in London where tickets are on sale ranging from from £35 to £130 at stubhub.co.uk at axs.com.
This is Cox’s first big fight – whereas you’ve been there for some time – how important is your experience going to be – and do you think Cox can handle the pressure?
“Experience is very important. You don’t understand it until you got it and even when you got it it’s still difficult to understand. I’m sure it will play a part. Cox has boxed at a high level as an amateur but he’s yet to do it as a pro. Let’s see if he can cope. I’m sure he will be well rehearsed in the build up and well drilled in the gym but putting it together under the spotlight on the biggest stage is always the most difficult task. I’ve been there and done it before, but let’s see if he can.”
Cox talks a good game and appears confident – he says you’ve been over indulging – have you still got the hunger?
“I’ve still got the hunger. I’ve still nowhere near achieved what I set out to achieve as a little kid. I haven’t won enough belts, I haven’t won enough fights, I haven’t made enough money, and until all those and a few other things are crossed off the bucket list, I’m more hungry than ever. I finally know what it feels like to be a World Champion and I don’t plan on surrendering that anytime soon. Now I would like the feeling of winning the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
How has your training been going?
My training has been going really well. We’ve had plenty of time so we’ve been able to structure a long camp. Everything is on track.
You’ve been improving with every fight since teaming up with Shane McGuigan. Do you expect this to continue? Is there still room for improvement?
“100% I think I’m becoming a better and better fighter. Obviously with the physical experience of training and being in big fights you’re going to improve, but also with Shane’s guidance, I feel that I’ve improved as a fighter. I’m adding more and more to my game. I’m more and more comfortable in various situations. I’ve always been comfortable against southpaws. Cox is the first southpaw I’ve been working towards with Shane McGuigan but we’re on course and we know what we need to do.“
You’ve said you’ve known Jamie a little bit, you roomed together as amateurs, from what you know about him, what do you think his mind set will be going into this fight?
“He’s a competent chap. When I knew him he had a lot of desire. Although his professional record doesn’t suggest any desire because he’s been a pro longer than me and he still hasn’t been in a real fight. He’s had breaks, he’s had injuries, he’s had personal issues. I’m sure now he decided this is his last crack at the whip as a professional boxer he’s going to try to knuckle down and prepare to the best of his abilities. I’m preparing for the best Jamie Cox. He’s fit, he’s strong, he’s aggressive, he’s ballsy, but they are all things I possess as well so I’m sure it will make for a great fight. I certainly feel I have the measure of him and I have a few advantages, which I’m going to reveal on the night.“
Does fighting in London, your hometown, at The SSE Arena Wembley, where you have enjoyed some good nights before, give you an advantage?
It’s lovely for me to fight at Wembley. Wembley is good for me because it is so close to home. I can do every moment of preparation in my own surroundings. I’ll be at my own gym, I can sleep at home in my own bed the night before the fight. All these things will be an added benefit come fight night because for me personally, this is how I do best.
(August 24th) The battle for the inaugural 168lb (76,2 kg) Muhammad Ali Trophy comes to Stuttgart, Germany on October 7 when IBO-Champion Chris Eubank Jr. (25-1-0, 19 KOs) meets Turkish Avni Yildirim (16-0, 10 KOs) in a quarter-final bout at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle and tickets are now on sale ranging from €21 to €250 at StubHub.de, eventim.de and easyticket.de.
“I am looking forward to fighting in Germany,” said 27-year old Eubank Jr. “It really doesn’t matter to me where I fight as long as I get the win that is all I care about. I have been training at Floyd Mayweather’s camp in the US the last weeks, and I could not have asked for better preparations before entering the World Boxing Super Series.”
26-year old Avni Yildirim from Istanbul, Turkey is excited about fighting in Stuttgart.
“I am very happy that the fight is in Stuttgart because for me it is like a second Turkey and I am looking forward to entertaining the crowd,” said Yildirim. “Training is going great, I know what I have to do. I have been training really hard, and I am fully focused on this.”
“It is a great honour for me to be a part of this tournament. If I did not have the skills to win I would not be a part of the World Boxing Super Series and I believe I have what it takes to win,” said Yildirim.
Eubank Jr., the British third seed was represented by Chris Eubank Senior at the Draft Gala in Monaco July 8 and the boxing legend chose the upcoming Turk as his son’s or Arthur Abraham’s quarter-final opponent in the World Boxing Super Series. Eubanks Jr. won the WBSS slot by outpointing the German veteran at the Wembley Arena July 15.
The fight against Abraham went the distance, but against Yildirim Eubank has seen an opportunity to settle the fight earlier.
“Yildirim’s chin has not been tested, I will test it to the absolute limit and if it has even the slightest bit of weakness he will not last six rounds,” said Eubank Jr.
(August 19th) The battle for the World Boxing Super Series Muhammad Ali Trophy in the cruiserweight division comes to Riga, Latvia on September 30 when WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (22-0, 18 KOs) faces Mike Perez (22-2-1, 14 KOs) in a quarter-final bout at the Riga Arena, and tickets are now on sale at www.bilesuserviss.lv ranging from €20.60 to €175.60.
“I’m really happy with being able to start the World Boxing Super Series at home in front of my own crowd,” said 32-year old Briedis. “We fight to win the Muhammad Ali trophy, but I am also putting my world title at stake. This is a big thing.”
The Latvian world champion believes that the pressure from the crowd can be a problem for Perez.
“For Latvia this will be the first major world championship bout in history so I hope to see a sold out arena,” said Briedis.
“From my previous experience with the Latvian crowd I can already tell Mike Perez that boxing in front of Riga crowd will not be easy for him. The boxing community around the world will learn how passionate and loud Latvian fans be!” said Briedis promising that his fans will see the best version of him.
“My preparation camp has been going very well so far and I can assure my fans that I’ll be at my best when the 30th of September arrives.”
Cuban Mike Perez fighting out of Cork, Ireland is however calm when talking about fighting in Latvia.
“Fighting in Latvia isn’t an issue for me,” said 31-year old Perez. “I don’t care where I fight, I’ll fight anywhere. I’m feeling good, I’m confident, and I’m looking forward to Riga.”
The former heavyweight oozes self-esteem before the challenge in Latvia’s capital.
“I really believe I can win the Muhammad Ali Trohy. That is just how I see it. I think I will win, I can not see anyone else winning it. I am the best cruiserweight in the competition.”
Tickets available from €20.60
(Glowacki / Masternak)
(August 14th) Former World Champion Krzysztof Glowacki (27-1, 17 KOs) and fellow Polish star Mateusz Masternak (39-4, 26 KOs) have signed-up to act as reserves in the World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight quarter-finals.
Assuming they are not needed to act as reserves, the fighters will box on the undercards of the quarter-final they are assigned to.
Glowacki, who’s only defeat came at the hands of tournament favourite Aleksandr Usyk last year, is the reserve for the Mairis Briedis vs Mike Perez quarter-final and WBC World Title match-up at the Riga Arena, Latvia on September 30.
While former European Title holder Masternak has been named as reserve for the Murat Gassiev vs Krzysztof Wlodarczyk quarter-final and IBF World Title bout.
Ticket details for the World Boxing Super Series’ quarter-final between Briedis and Perez on September 30th at the Riga Arena in Latvia will be announced shortly.
The date and venue for Gassiev vs Wlodarczyk will be announced soon, along with ticket details. In the meantime, fans can sign-up to ticket alerts here.
(August 10th) Heavyweight David Price (21-4, 18 KOs) is confirmed on the World Boxing Super Series undercard when he faces Raphael Zumbano Love (39-15-1, 32 KOs) over eight rounds at the Echo Arena, Liverpool September 16.
“I’m looking forward to making a statement on the World Boxing Super Series undercard,” said 34-year old Price.
The task ahead for Price is a 36-year old Brazilian who went the distance with reputable heavyweights as Shannon Briggs and Andy Ruiz Jr.
“I know Raphael has been in with some big names and he has taken a few of them the distance. So he must be quite tricky and quite durable, but I view this fight, like all of my fights, as a must win fight.”
There have been ups and downs in Price’s career, but the Liverpool boxer has not given up the hope of achieving great results.
“I have tried to go to world level a couple of times and failed, but there’s no shame in that. It’s all about getting back to winning ways and hopefully setting up a title shot of some kind.”
Price lost his last fight February 4 at the Olympia in London when he fought for the WBO European title and was stopped by his opponent Christian Hammer in the 7th round. A tough loss that led to speculations on Price’s future.
“If you lose you manage to convince yourself to go again. After the last fight I did toy with the idea of packing it in, but after a bit of time I decided to give it a last crack of the whip because a defeat doesn’t always signal the end.”
Also added to the undercard is Mikael Lawal (2-0, 2 KO’s). The big-punching undefeated British prospect will take on the very tough Jakub Wojcik (8-19-2, 4 KOs) from Poland. The pair will meet in a four-round cruiserweight contest.
Tickets are on sale now priced £35, £40, £60, £80, £100, £150, £200 and £350 (VIP) via Liverpool Echo Arena.
(August 8th )The battle for the inaugural 168lb (76,2 kg) Muhammad Ali Trophy comes to Stuttgart, Germany on October 7 when IBO-Champion Chris Eubank Jr. (25-1-0, 19 KOs) meets Turkish Avni Yildirim (16-0, 10 KOs) in a quarter-final bout at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle.
“The Muhammad Ali Trophy is a great idea and I am thrilled to be a part of the World Boxing Super Series,” said 27-year old Eubank Jr.
“I don’t mind about fighting in Germany. I honestly don’t mind where I fight. I could be fighting in a phone box. It really doesn’t matter to me as long as I get the win that’s all I care about.”
The British third seed was represented by Chris Eubank Senior at the Draft Gala in Monaco July 8 and the boxing legend chose the upcoming Turk as his son’s or Arthur Abraham’s quarter-final opponent in the World Boxing Super Series. Eubanks Jr. won the WBSS slot by outpointing the German veteran at the Wembley Arena July 15.
The fight against Abraham went the distance, but against Yildirim Eubank eyes an opportunity to settle the match earlier.
“Yildirim’s chin hasn’t been tested, I will test it to the absolute limit and if it has even the slightest bit of weakness he won’t last six rounds,” said Eubank Jr.
26-year old Avni Yildirim from Istanbul, Turkey is excited about fighting in Stuttgart.
“I am very happy that the fight is in Stuttgart because for me it is like a second Turkey,” said Yildirim. “Training is going great, I know what I have to do. I have been training really hard already, I am fully focused on this. Chris should be too.”
The Turkish fighter is anything but impressed by the news on Eubank Jr. joining Floyd Mayweather’s training camp in the US ahead of the American’s fight with Conor McGregor.
“What is Chris going to learn there, apart from hide-and-seek? I like Mayweather, he is a special guy. But Eubank is not Mayweather. Seriously, what is he going to learn from a welterweight, to run away for 12 rounds? The fans want a fight, I want a fight! If he is man enough, me versus Chris will be a good fight.”
Ticket details for the World Boxing Super Series’ quarter-final bout between Chris Eubank Jr. and Avni Yildirim at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle in Stuttgart will be announced shortly. In the meantime, (click here) to sign-up for ticket alerts so you never miss out on World Boxing Super Series tickets!
(July 23rd) WBC World Champion Briedis meets Irish-based and Cuban-born Perez in quarter-final showdown on September 30th at the Riga Arena in Latvia
The World Boxing Super Series is delighted to announce that the Riga Arena in Latvia will play host to the cruiserweight quarter-final bout between reigning and defending WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (22-0, 18 KOs) and Irish-based and Cuban-born Mike Perez (22-2-1, 14 KOs) on September 30th.
Briedis, one of the cruiserweight tournament’s four seeded fighters, selected Perez as his quarter-final opponent at the live Draft Gala in Monaco on July 8th. His first fight will see him defend the WBC title he claimed with a unanimous points victory over fellow World Boxing Super Series competitor and former WBO World Champion Marco Huck on April 1st, and the 32 year-old is looking forward to kick starting the competition in his hometown of Riga. ‘’I’m greatly honoured to begin my World Boxing Super Series journey at the Riga Arena,’’ said Briedis. ‘’This is my first fight of the tournament, the first defence of my WBC World Cruiserweight title and I’m really happy that I will be able to do it in front of my home crowd. There are no easy fights in this tournament. Mike Perez has already made his name in the heavyweight division and seems to be in the shape of his life coming down to cruiserweight. Now, it’s about putting the hard work in the gym and getting ready for the September 30th showdown.’’
Having announced himself on the cruiserweight scene with a 29-second KO win over Viktor Biscak on June 10th, Perez is eager to assert his dominance on the World Boxing Super Series starting with a quarter-final victory that would see him crowned WBC World Champion. ‘’I’m very excited,’’ said Perez. ‘’It’s the opportunity of a lifetime and I can’t wait. I have a chance to become World Champion in my very first fight in the tournament so I couldn’t have asked for better. Briedis is a good champion but I can’t wait to bring the belt home. I’m so lucky to have the opportunity to fight for the Muhammad Ali Trophy and also become the undisputed cruiserweight champion in this tournament and I have no doubt that I will do just that. I have worked so hard for these last couple of years and really dedicated myself to get this chance and nobody is going to take it from me. I have lots of experience as both an amateur and professional, a lot of ability and now at cruiserweight I’m much faster on my feet and can throw faster combinations so I feel like I’m a much better fighter.’’
Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa`s Head of Management Board, says he is delighted to be staging this quarter-final contest at the Riga Arena in Latvia: ‘’The World Boxing Super Series is truly a global phenomenon,’’ says Dalmiglio. ‘’Over the course of the tournament, we will be visiting some of the best venues around the world. We’re very happy to be bringing this fight to the Riga Arena in Latvia, which will provide the perfect setting for an unforgettable night of boxing.’’
Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer, Kalle Sauerland, believes Briedis versus Perez could prove to be one of the World Boxing Super Series’ most intriguing match ups. ‘’This tournament is filled with fascinating fights,’’ said Sauerland. ‘’And none more so than this. Mike Perez is making just his second appearance at 200lbs having moved down from heavyweight, and could well be the dark horse of the division, while Mairis Briedis is a proven World class operator who will be making his first World title defence. This really is an intriguing match up, and what the World Boxing Super Series is all about!’’
In the World Boxing Super Series, 16 elite fighters – eight super-middleweights and eight cruiserweights – will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament. In both divisions, there will be four quarter-finals (September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), making for a total of 14 high-class fights.
Ticket details for the World Boxing Super Series’ quarter-final bout between Mairis Briedis Mike Perez on September 30th at the Riga Arena in Latvia will be announced shortly.
(July 9th) The World Boxing Super Series has announced it’s quarterfinal matchups for the upcoming super middleweight and cruiserweight division tournaments.
The WBSS held the 16 participating fighter draft at the Grimaldi Forum in Monte Carlo this weekend.
The $50 million dollar World Boxing Super Series tournament awarding the coveted Muhammad Ali Trophy features five current world champions and nine undefeated boxers.
Opening the draft with a new twist the top four seeds in each division were allowed to select their opponents for the quarterfinal bouts, which are set to begin in September.
In the 168lb super middleweight tournament, UK’s WBA Champion “Saint” George Groves picked fellow countryman Swindon, Wiltshire, UK’s Jamie Cox and Liverpool, UK's Callum “Mundo” Smith chose Nyköping, Sweden’s Erik Skoglund. Mecklenburg, Germany southpaw Juergen Braehmer will face the only US participant, Saint Paul, Minnesota’s, unbeaten Rob Brant and Sivas, Turkey’s Avni “Robot” Yildrim will face the winner of the July 15th Arthur Abraham’s vs Chris Eubank bout.
The growing cruiserweight division features the champions in each of the four major sanctioning bodies as Kiev, Ukraine 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist Oleksandr Usyk, the WBO Champion, selected to face Germany’s former WBO Cruiserweight Champion Marco “Käpt'n” Huck.
Vladikavkaz, Russia’s unbeaten IBF Champion Murat Gassiev takes on Piaseczno, Poland mandatory challenger Krzysztof Wlodarczyk, while Riga, Latvia’s WBCChampion, Mairis Briedis, takes on Cork, Ireland, Cuban transplant and former heavyweight contender Mike “The Rebel” Perez.
Miami, Florida, based unbeaten Cuban WBA Champion, Yunier Dorticos meets Volgodonsk, Russia’s once beaten “Russian Hammer” Dmitry Kudrayshov.
The semifinals of both tournaments are scheduled to begin early next year, with the finals be held in May. The exact dates and venues for all rounds will be announced soon.
(July 7th ) The World Boxing Super Series is proud to announce that the winner of the IBO World Championship between Chris Eubank Jnr. and Arthur Abraham will enter the competition for the inaugural Ali Trophy. The two stars collide at Wembley Arena in London on July 15, with the final spot in the revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament up for grabs. The winner will enter a star-studded super-middleweight competition that already features WBA Super Champion George Groves, Callum Smith, who will fight for the WBC Diamond Championship, former world champion Juergen Braehmer as well as undefeated challengers Erik Skoglund, Jamie Cox, Avni Yildirim and Rob Brant.
“I look forward to testing myself against the best fighters out there,” said Eubank (24-1, 19 KOs). “The Muhammad Ali Trophy is a great idea and I am thrilled to participate. It would be great to fight George Groves and to take his title away from him but let´s see what the draw in Monaco brings. I am taking one step at a time and right now all my focus is on the fight with Arthur Abraham. With just one win between me and the World Boxing Super Series, I am extremely motivated.”
Abraham (46-5, 30 KOs) has also firmly set his sights on the Muhammad Ali Trophy. “All my focus is on the difficult and spectacular fight next week at Wembley,” he said. I have to and I will defeat Eubank in a big fight. Then things will take off with the World Boxing Super Series, which really is amazing. There are so many great fights in such a short period of time, like blow-by-blow. The boxing fans will really love it. I have been dreaming of having a tournament with the world´s best boxers. I will become the world´s best super-middleweight. This really is the Champions League of Boxing and I am really looking forward to it.”
Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa´s Head of Management Board, believes that the winner of the hotly-anticipated clash will be a worthy addition to the Muhammad Ali Trophy. “This is great news for the World Boxing Super Series,” he said. “The tournament either gets a multiple world champion who has been a top super-middleweight for many years or an up-and-coming youngster who has the potential to dominate the division for years to come. The fans will get their worth either way. May the best man win. With nine undefeated fighters, seven belts, five world champions and three former champions the Muhammad Ali Trophy has delivered on the promise to pit the best against the best.”
Said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa´s Chief Boxing Officer: “Eubank versus Abraham is a big fight that just got bigger. With the winner going into the tournament, the stakes could not be any higher.”
On Saturday, all participants of the World Boxing Super Series will come face-to-face in Monaco to determine the quarter-final match-ups in a Live Draft Gala, which will be broadcasted in multiple territories and also be streamed live on www.WorldBoxingSuperSeries.com. During the live TV show, the top four seeds will select their opponents from the unseeded boxers. The seeding, which will be set by the Comosa Board, will be announced later today.
As the IBO Champion, Eubank Jnr. has been granted the right to represent this pairing in Monaco. “With just one week between the Draft Gala and their fight, Chris Eubank Jnr. could not come down personally but will be represented by his father Chris Eubank Senior, who would be ready select an opponent for the winner of the Abraham-Eubank fight if they make it into the top four seeds,” Dalmiglio added.
In the World Boxing Super Series, 16 elite fighters – eight super-middleweights and eight cruiserweights – will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament. In both divisions, there will be four quarter-finals (September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), making for a total of 14 high-class fights.
(July 7th) 38-0 Undefeated Yildirim and Brant join super-middleweight bracket, Perez completes cruiserweight tournament line-up
The World Boxing Super Series is delighted to announce three more rising challengers. Undefeated youngsters Avni Yildirim (16-0, 10 KOs) and Rob Brant (22-0, 15 KOs) have been added to the super-middleweight competition, while Mike Perez (22-2-1, 14 KOs) completes the cruiserweight line-up. With just one more spot to be filled, the Muhammad Ali Trophy now features nine undefeated fighters, five world champions and three former world champions.
Yildirim, from Turkey, has already fired a first warning shot to his competitors. “In the USA they call me the Dentist because what I do in sparring and in fights is rearranging teeth,” he said. “My message to everybody else in the tournament: You should all hope that you don’t have to fight me in the first round because I will definitely win and go on to the semi-final, final and to the victory. There is no stopping me. I want to make my country and my people proud and I will win the World Boxing Super Series for Turkey.“
Like Yildirim, Brant feels it is his time to shine. “I will be proud to represent America in the World Boxing Super Series,“ he said. “I am young, I am undefeated, I am hungry and I am ready for the world stage. This is my time! I did not just enter this tournament, I am going to win the Muhammad Ali Trophy!”
Yildirim and Brant join a stacked competition that already features WBA Super Champion George Groves, Callum Smith (who as the WBC´s top-ranked challenger will be fighting for the WBC Diamond Championship), former champion Juergen Braehmer as well as rising challengers Erik Skoglund and Jamie Cox.
Perez completes a star-studded cruiserweight competition that comprises all four reigning world champions, two former world champions and a KO king. Perez fancies his chances to win at all. “I am very happy to be part of the World Boxing Super Series,” he said. “It´s a very exciting tournament and the perfect opportunity for me to prove that I can be the best cruiserweight in the world.”
Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa`s Head of Management Board, is excited about the tournament line-up. “With 15 of the 16 spots filled, I think it´s fair to say that the World Boxing Super Series is delivering on the promise to bring together the best fighters from all around the world,” he stated. “With so many champions, former champions and unbeaten challengers, the line-up is truly amazing.”
Kalle Sauerland, Comosa`s Chief Boxing Officer, revealed that the final participant – the eighth super-middleweight – will be announced on Friday morning. “Everything is falling into place nicely,” he said. “The stage is set for the Draft Gala, with the 16th and final spot to be announced on Friday morning. And I can already reveal that it will be a big one.”
The first participants have started to arrive in Monaco where the hotly-anticipated Draft Gala will take place on Saturday (23:00 local, 5 PM ET). The live TV show will be broadcasted in multiple territories and also be streamed live on www.WorldBoxingSuperSeries.com. During the Draft Gala, the top four seeds, which will be set by the Comosa Board once the line-up has been completed, will select their opponents from the unseeded boxers.
In the World Boxing Super Series, 16 elite fighters – eight super-middleweights and eight cruiserweights – will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament. In both divisions, there will be four quarter-finals (September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), making for a total of 14 high-class fights.
(July 6th) The World Boxing Council (WBC) will honour the World Boxing Super Series by awarding its prestigious WBC Diamond Belt for both the Cruiserweight as well as the Super-Middleweight tournament. As of today, the inaugural season of the revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament already features five world champions and three former champions as well as three rising contenders, which has led to an outcry of media and fan approval.
The WBC Diamond Championship has been created as an honorary championship for the winner of a historic fight between two elite boxers, such as the blockbuster between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao.
“This tournament is all about the best fighting the best,” said WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman. “There will be no easy fight and whoever wins will clearly be recognised as one of the most extraordinary and elite boxer in the sport. Hence, we are proud to put the WBC Diamond Championship on the line, which marks the biggest honour the WBC can grant. The WBC is proud to support and fully embrace the tournament and we look forward to a terrific start at the Gala in Monte Carlo on July 8, joining the greatest icon in boxing Muhammad ALI as the inspiration to all participants.”
Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa`s Head of Management Board, is delighted that the revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament has been received so well by federations, fans and fighters. “We are thrilled that the WBC honours the tournament with the Diamond Championship, their biggest prize. We´re in for a lot of exciting fights and this is a real honour. We look forward to also working closely together with WBC and its President in order to bring the sport forward inside and outside the ring.”
In the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series, 16 elite fighters – eight super-middleweights and eight cruiserweights – will battle out a bracket-style elimination tournament. In both divisions, there will be four quarter-finals (September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), making for a total of 14 high-class fights. The winners will receive The Greatest Prize in Boxing, the Muhammad Ali Trophy. The quarter-finals will be set during the live Draft Gala at the famed Grimaldi Forum in Monaco on Saturday, with the top seeds (determined by the Comosa Board) picking their opponents from the unseeded boxers.
(July 5) The World Boxing Super Series is delighted to present the seventh of eight participants in the cruiserweight division. Dmitry Kudryashov has joined a star-studded tournament line-up that features the four reigning world champions Oleksandr Usyk (WBO), Mairis Briedis (WBC), Murat Gassiev (IBF) and Yunier Dorticos (WBO) as well as former champions Marco Huck and Krzysztof Wlodarczyk. The Russian Hammer (21-1, 21 KOs) enters the Muhammad Ali Trophy with a fearsome KO ratio of 94 %, with all of his 21 victories coming by the way of knockout.
“I am the Russian Hammer and I will hammer my way to four titles and the Muhammad Ali Trophy,” Kudryashov said. “The tournament is loaded with champions and former champions but nobody has a better KO ratio than me. I have a lot of respect for my fellow participants but whoever gets in my way will be knocked out.”
Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa´s Head of Management Board, believes the stage is set for a great tournament. “Four undefeated world champions, two former champions and a KO king battling it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament – it hardly gets any better than this,” he said. “The World Boxing Super Series will set new standards in terms of quality and entertainment.”
With the addition of Kudryashov, the combined KO ratio of all participants in the cruiserweight division has gone up to 74 percent. “A KO tournament for the KO machines – this is what fans have been dreaming of for a long time,” said Richard Schaefer, Comosa`s Chairman of the Americas. “You wouldn´t want to miss a single second of the tournament, not just because of the fighters` overall quality but especially because of their punching power. With a line-up like this, any fight can be over at any second. The fans will love the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
In what will be a historic moment, all participants will come face-to-face during the Draft Gala in Monaco on Saturday. The top four seeds will hand-pick their opponents from the unseeded boxers. “The drama begins live on stage at the famed Grimaldi Forum when these warriors will see eye-to-eye with their biggest rivals and try to select the easiest opponent,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa`s Chief Boxing Officer. “However, between four world champs, two former champs, a KO king and another high-profile challenger to be announced shortly, there will be no easy opponents. It´s intriguing to debate about who will pick whom. We can´t wait for Saturday.”
Once the quarter-final match-ups have been set, the dates and venues will be announced.
(June 23rd) The World Boxing Super Series will kick off in dramatic fashion on July 8 when the famed Grimaldi Forum will host the official Draft Gala for the Muhammad Ali Trophy, The Greatest Prize in Boxing.
Starting in September, eight top cruiserweights, including the three undefeated world champions Mairis Briedis (WBC), Yunier Dorticos (WBA) and Murat Gassiev (IBF), as well as eight elite super-middleweights, including WBA Super Champion George Groves, will battle out a bracket-style elimination tournament to determine the undisputed number one in each division.
To set the hotly-anticipated quarter-final match-ups, a special procedure has been put in place. “In the stunning venue of the Grimaldi Forum and through a never-seen-before live process, the fight calendar will take shape,” said Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa´s Head of Management Board. “For the first time in boxing history, 16 stars will be on the same stage, with the top seeds picking their opponents from the unseeded boxers during a live broadcast. There could not be a more spectacular way to kick off the quest for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
Richard Schaefer, Comosa`s Chairman of the Americas, believes the unique setting will create a very special atmosphere inside the Grimaldi Forum, which will be crowded with high-profile guests from the world of sports, television and media.
“Just imagine all the 16 gladiators lined up on stage, surrounded by rivals, looking into each other’s eyes knowing that only one man per division can take home all the belts and the Ali Trophy,” Schaefer said. “You never know what´s going to happen in such an explosive setting. There will certainly be a lot of testosterone on stage.”
As of today, five fighters – four world champions one former world champion – have signed up for the revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament, with 11 more to be announced shortly. The Comosa Board will then seed the participants based on a fixed set of criteria, including stardom and recent form.
“The fact that the top seeds can hand-pick their opponents will fuel a lot of intriguing speculation among fighters and fans,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa´s Chief Boxing Officer. “Who will pick whom? Who will be avoided? How will fighters select their opponents? Intuition? Recent form? Or do they just flip a coin since there are no easy fights in the World Boxing Super Series? We will find out in Monaco on July 8.”
In the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series, 16 elite fighters – eight super-middleweights and eight cruiserweights – will battle out a bracket-style elimination tournament. In both divisions, there will be four quarter-finals
(September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), making for a total of 14 high-class fights.
WORLD BOXING SUPER SERIES AT A GLANCE
Combined Record of World Boxing Super Series Participants:
146 wins, 6 losses, 111 KOs
Confirmed Cruiserweights (4 of 8)
Yunier Dorticos (21-0, 20 KOs), WBA World Champion o Murat Gassiev (24-0, 17 KOs), IBF World Champion o Mairis Briedis (22-0, 18 KOs), WBC World Champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (53-3-1, 37 KOs), former IBF / WBC World Champion & IBF top-ranked challenger
Confirmed Super-Middleweights (1 of 8)
George Groves (26-3, 19 KOs), WBA Super Champion
ABOUT THE WORLD BOXING SUPER SERIES Organised by Comosa AG, the World Boxing Super Series will kick off in September 2017, featuring the Cruiserweight and Super Middleweight divisions. In each weight class, eight elite boxers will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament, with four quarter-finals (fall 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018). This makes for seven top fights per weight class, and a total of 14 fights in Season One to be staged in premier venues around the globe. The winners of the World Boxing Super Series will rightfully receive The Greatest Prize in Boxing, the Muhammad Ali Trophy. Please visit our website www.WorldBoxingSuperSeries.com for more information or follow @WBSuperSeries on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.
(Gassiev, Briedas, Wlodarczyk)
(June 2nd) The first three star names have signed up for the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series. IBF Cruiserweight World Champion Murat Gassiev (24-0, 17 KOs), WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (22-0, 18 KOs) as well as former IBF / WBC champion & IBF top-ranked challenger Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (53-3-1, 37 KOs) will all participate in the revolutionary global knock-out tournament, with five more elite fighters to be confirmed shortly. The winner will receive the GREATEST prize in boxing, the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
Boasting a combined record of 99 wins and 3 losses along with 72 KOs, Gassiev, Briedis and Wlodarczyk can´t wait to get in on and write history.
"It is an honor to be in the World Boxing Super Series," said Gassiev, who holds the IBF title. "This is the best fighting the best. I have never lost a fight, I am the IBF champion and I look forward to winning the other belts as well to cement my position as the best fighter in the division!"
WBC Champion Briedis is also thrilled to participate. "This is the Champions League of boxing and I am going to prove that I am the world´s best cruiserweight," he said. "The competition will be tough, but to be the best, you have to beat the best."
Wlodarczyk, the former IBF & WBC Champion who now occupies the number one spot in the IBF rankings, is equally confident of success. "I will stamp my authority on the division by beating the best cruiserweights out there and winning the World Boxing Super Series," he stated. "There is a reason the winner gets the Muhammad Ali Trophy. He was the Greatest of all time, and the winner of this tournament has the right to call himself the greatest cruiserweight of our time."
Saturday will mark the first anniversary of Muhammad Ali´s death. Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa´s Head of Management Board, paid tribute to the GREATEST of all time. "Nobody will ever forget what Ali has achieved," he said. "He was the GREATEST of all time because he defeated the best opponents out there. The World Boxing Super Series is all about the best fighting the best, and that is why we named the trophy after him."
With three high-profile signings confirmed and many more to come, the stage is set for an exciting tournament. "The quest for the Muhammad Ali Trophy has officially begun and we are thrilled to welcome two unbeaten world champions and a top-ranked challenger, who is a former champion, to the World Boxing Super Series," Dalmiglio said. "They have accepted the ultimate challenge to determine the best cruiserweight in the world."
Season 1 of the World Boxing Super Series will feature the cruiserweights and super-middleweight divisions. In each weight class, eight top fighters will battle out a bracket-style elimination tournament. There will be four quarter-finals (September / October 2017), two semi-finals (early 2018) and one final (May 2018), which makes for a total of 14 high-class fights. "We have received a massive amount of applications for both divisions," said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa`s Chief Boxing Officer. "The best fighters are lining up to be in the tournament. Just like the fans, they love the format and the fact that there will only be one man standing at the end."
Richard Schaefer, Comosa`s Chairman of the Americas, added: "We promised you the biggest names and champions in the divisions and here we are delivering. More names will follow shortly. We simply can't wait to get the action started!"
The quarter-final pairings will be determined during the Draft Gala in Monaco in early July. In each weight class, the four top-seeded boxers (which will be determined by the Comosa Board) will select their quarter-final opponents from the four unseeded boxers. Once the pairings are set, the exact fight dates and venues will be announced. Details about the participants in the super-middleweight division will be revealed shortly.
(May 9th) Comosa AG, the organiser of boxing´s first global knock-out tournament, is delighted to announce that the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series will feature the fiercely-competitive cruiserweight and super middleweight divisions. In each weight class, eight fighters will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament. The last man standing will receive the GREATEST prize in boxing, the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
"We are thrilled to kick off the World Boxing Super Series in style with two of the sport's most exciting divisions,"said Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa's Head of Management Board."The tournament will create never- seen before drama for fans around the globe."
Richard Schaefer, Comosa's Chairman of the Americas, believes the World Boxing Super Series will lift boxing to a new level. He said: "The cruiserweights and super-middleweight have time and time again thrown up thrilling contests - but nobody has ever pitted the top fighters against each other in a fan-friendly, easy-to- understand way within a short period of time. Our revolutionary KO tournament will take less than a year and deliver the crème de la crème in these weights with a blend of past, present and future from the world's finest fighters."
The tournament will kick off in September, with four quarter-finals per division. The semi-finals will be held in early 2018, and the winners will be crowned in May 2018. "We have an exciting format, two exciting divisions and now we will sign exciting fighters," said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa´s Chief Boxing Officer. "These weights give a great opportunity for us to deliver a huge geographic spread. On top of that, I can imagine champions and challengers from other divisions, such as light heavyweight, stepping up or down in weight to join the quest for the Ali Trophy."
A special boxer selection process has been put in place to determine the contestants for Season One.
On May 15, tournament enrollment will commence where all WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF Champions as well as all top 15 world-ranked contenders (or their respective promoters, agents, managers or trainers with legal entitlement) can make their application to enter the tournament via enrollment@WorldBoxingSuperSeries.com.
Enrollment closes on May 26. All applicants will be verified and evaluated by the board of Comosa. The Comosa Sports Division will then contract eight fighters per weight class as well as potential back-ups.
In early July, Comosa will stage an official Presentation Gala in Monte Carlo to publicly announce all 16 participants and determine the draw. In each weight class, the four top seeds will select their quarter-final opponents from the four unseeded boxers in a live TV show.
World Boxing Super Series: Revolutionary $50-Million Elimination Tournament Launched In New York
Winners to Receive the GREATEST Prize in Boxing,
KO Tournament to Kick Off in September 2017!
(March 9th) Partners from the world of boxing, marketing and broadcasting behind the project Comosa AG are pleased to announce the launch of the World Boxing Super Series, a revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament featuring the world`s best boxers and a total of $50 million in prize money. The winner will receive the GREATEST prize in boxing - the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
"The World Boxing Super Series will change the world of boxing," said Roberto Dalmiglio, Comosa's Head of Management Board. "The tournament will set new standards, ensure coherent storylines and provide top-class boxing throughout the year. It is Comosa's ambition to turn the World Boxing Super Series into the world's biggest and best boxing tournament."
The tournament will be organised by newly-founded Comosa AG, a Swiss-registered company with principal owners from the world of marketing (Highlight Event & Entertainment), broadcasting (Modern Times Group) and boxing (Team Sauerland).
The tournament, the first of its kind, will kick off in September 2017. It will be taking place on an annual basis. The inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series will feature two weight classes, 16 fighters and a total of 14 main events. In each weight class, eight boxers will battle it out in a bracket-style elimination tournament, with four quarter-finals, two semi-finals and one final. This makes for seven top fights per weight class, and a total of 14 fights in season 1 to be staged in premier venues around the globe. An expert panel will invite the world's best boxers, namely the top 15-ranked fighters of the four big federations WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO.
Matthew Hooper, Executive Vice President, Modern Times Group, said:
"The fighters can earn a lot of money in the World Boxing Super Series and also prove that they are the number one in their division. We will set out a clear and consistent schedule and stick to it."
The eight Quarter Finals - four in each weight class - will take place in September and October 2017, with the four Semi Finals scheduled for January and February 2018. The two Finals will then go down in May 2018.
"Comosa is proud to announce a close cooperation with the family of the greatest boxer of all time, Muhammad Ali, and we are delighted to honour his legacy with this tournament," said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa's Chief Boxing Officer. "Whoever emerges as the winner of the World Boxing Super Series will rightfully receive the GREATEST prize in boxing, the Muhammad Ali Trophy."
Added Richard Schaefer, Comosa's Chairman of the Americas: "I have been involved in the sport for a long time and boxing has really been missing a big tournament like the World Boxing Super Series. Every major sport has one. This is a fascinating project and I am thrilled to be involved. The quality of the people behind this tournament ensures it will be a success."
The weight classes for the inaugural season of the World Boxing Super Series - as well as the respective participants - will be announced at the Draft Gala, a live-televised kick-off event in June 2017. To avoid each other in the Quarter Finals, the top four boxers will be seeded. During the Draft Gala, they will pick their Quarter Final opponents.
Comosa will partner up with boxers, promoters and managers from around the world, and in accordance with the four major World Boxing Federations, creating a new platform for the sport to thrive on.
Comosa has signed an agreement with MP & Silva, which is the exclusive sales agent of World Boxing Super Series tournaments for the next 3 seasons (2017/18, 18/19 and 19/20) on a world-wide basis excluding USA and Scandinavia. The rights will be available for international territories on all broadcast platforms, including digital and OTT formats.
Alongside action-packed Fight Nights, there will be extensive TV & online programming produced for fans around the globe. More information will be announced in due course.
Frequently Asked Questions - New York - 9th March 2017
Which Boxers will be participating in the World Boxing Super Series?
All professional licensed boxers, ranked in the top 15 of the four official federations, who have previously participated in the Seasons' chosen weight classes will be invited to the Tournament. Any boxer, or their representative, that fulfils these criteria can contact the World Boxing Super Series or will be contacted directly to be part of the Tournament.
How will World Boxing Super Series boxers be chosen?
Boxers rated within top-15 on the current World Rankings in the four main federations (WBA, WBC, IBF, WBO) will be considered. An expert panel will choose who to invite to the Tournament. The expert panel will be nominated by the board of Comosa and will consist of former pros, journalists, respected experts and people with a strong and respected public connection to the sport.
Which weight classes will be in the tournament?
Each season, the weight classes will be decided by Comosa and announced several months before start of the Tournament.
How will World Boxing Super Series Match-ups be determined?
All 8 boxers will be seeded by an Expert Panel prior to the start of the Tournament. The Top 4 seeds will be kept apart in the Quarter Finals and will chose their opponent in a live televised broadcast draft gala. The tournament directors will select the location of the fights.
When will World Boxing Super Series Seasons take place?
Season 1 is scheduled to commence with the Quarter Finals in September & October 2017 and complete with the Finals in May 2018. The Semi Finals will take place in January and February 2018. Season 2 will commence in September 2018 and follow the same cycle.
How many Fight Nights will there be in Season 1?
Each weight class will include 4 Quarter Finals, 2 Semi Finals and 1 Final. There will be 2 weight classes in Season 1, resulting in 14 Fight Nights in total.
Where will World Boxing Super Series Fight Nights take place?
The fights will take place around the globe, but mainly in USA and Europe. Seven Fights in Europe will start at 11:00 PM CET and the other seven fights in USA will start at 11:00 PM EST. There will be one World Boxing Super Series fight per event plus undercard fights. Only first class arenas will host World Boxing Super Series events.
What happens if a World Boxing Super Series Boxer is injured, or must withdraw from the Tournament?
There will be a pool of 'Reserve Boxers', who will be contracted and made public. The Reserve Boxers will always be available at event the shortest notice should a Boxer have to withdraw for any reason. The Boxers on the reserve list will be Boxers who didn't quite make it in to the tournament, or, who performed well in previous rounds despite losing.
Who will Broadcast World Boxing Super Series Fight Nights?
Broadcast deals will be announced in the coming months, but the tournament will get TV coverage around the globe. Comosa has already completed a long term deal with leading sports rights agency MP and Silva who will represent the media rights of the World Boxing Super Series outside the USA. The rights holders will receive plenty of shoulder-programming around each individual Fight Night to promote the tournament, the package available for the fans viewing pleasure will be second-to-none, featuring revolutionary ideas and add-ons, during the build-up to the event in fight week and the event itself.
Will there be a World Boxing Super Series Anti-Doping programme?
Yes - all participants will be tested in accordance with WADA standards. No boxer can participate if they are in breach of any doping regulations and testing will run throughout the Tournament schedule.
Who will Judge/Referee World Boxing Super Series Fight Nights?
World Boxing Super Series events will be refereed and judged in accordance with the local rules of each fight. All Fight Nights will take place under the jurisdiction of local Boxing and Legal authorities (For example, events that take place in New York will adhere to the New York State Athletic Commission.)
Will the WBC, WBA, WBO & IBF (and others) be involved in the Tournament?
All four of the major federations will be invited to play an active role in the organization of the Tournament.
Will the Fights be for Championship and/or Belts?
If a fighter brings a title into the tournament this title is respected by the World Boxing Super Series, and the fights where one of the existing belts are on the line will be regarded as a world title fight within the World Boxing Super Series. The world title can then be carried on throughout the Tournament.
Which promoters are working with the Tournament?
World Boxing Super Series will seek to work with all promoters, ensuring the best possible Boxers are involved - creating an exciting tournament for fans.
Will there be other seasons in future years?
Yes. The Tournament will become an annual event, with different weight classes participating each year.
Will World Boxing Super Series Boxers receive prize-money in the tournament?
Season one has a budget of USD 50,000,000 to be distributed to the participating boxers. The break-down of prize-money will be communicated before the start of each tournament but will include bonusses for a win, so that fighters are not simply fighting for a purse but always competing for a 'prize' in every round of the tournament - the highest bonus will be paid out for winning the final.
What is the Muhammad Ali Trophy?
The winner of each Weight class in each season will receive the Muhammad Ali Trophy. The trophy was designed by Silvio Gazzaniga (the designer of the FIFA World Cup Trophy). It's named after The Greatest fighter in history, Muhammad Ali, to honour the 'Greatest of All Time.'
How much will Muhammad Ali legacy and name be involved in the Tournament?
The Tournament has been designed to honour Muhammad Ali, his accomplishments and legacy. Crowning new champions each year and celebrating Boxers skills inside the ring serves as a fitting reminder as to how much Muhammad Ali contributed to the sport of Boxing both inside and outside the ring.
How can I receive further information on the Tournament?
Everyone will be able to find further information and get news, videos etc. about the tournament on Facebook (www.facebook.com/WBSuperSeries), Twitter (twitter.com/WBSuperSeries) and online at www.WorldBoxingSuperSeries.com. The full website will be launched following press events in Europe. Further information will be disclosed in the coming weeks and months.