By Alexey Sukachev
The Moscow fight card, which was tentatively scheduled to take place on December 25 in Moscow, Russia, is being re-scheduled for the beginning of 2012. The reason has been voiced tonight by Vladimir Hryunov, the promoter of the show.
“The main reason for this move is that Gary Hyde, who serves as Guillermo Rigondeaux's manager, has come out to suggest that a fight between his protégé and Alexander Bakhtin is possible for here in Moscow”, said Hrynov in his conversation with Radio Sport. “It’s a challenge for the Cuban champion. On the other hand, it’s a huge challenge for us, and we are very proud to accept such a deal”.
31-year old former amateur superstar Guillermo Rigondeaux started his pro career just two years ago. It took the famed Cuban refugee less than two years to take his first honors by capturing a WBA interim super bantamweight title after a narrow win over Panamanian Ricardo Cordoba in just his seventh bout in paid ranks.
This year Rigondeaux (8-0, 6 KOs) has been seen just once inside the squared circle. He spent less than a round annihilating Irish Willie Casey. However, the Cuban’s professional achievements are hardly comparable with his ultra stellar amateur career, which culminated both in 2000 and in 2004, when Rigondeaux won two consecutive gold medals in the Summer Olympics. Guillermo is also a seven-time Cuban national and two-time (2001 and 2005) world champion; he was widely regarded as one of the finest technicians ever to step inside a ring.
30-year old Bakhtin (28-0, 11 KOs) is a perennial contender at 118 and 122 lbs. He is presently being ranked #4 by both the WBA and the WBC. Bakhtin was first scheduled to fight Nehomar Cermeno and then Mario Briones in Moscow.
However, Rigondeaux is rumored to be in thorough negotiations for a fight with “regular” WBA champion Rico Ramos (20-0, 12 KOs) for January. They were scheduled to fight on December 31, but the card was canceled.
Moscow card was penciled to feature several familiar names - and among them heavyweight contender Jameel McCline and comebacking Russian cruiserweight Grigory Drozd. Former undisputed heavyweight king Hasim Rahman was also rumored to be a part of the show but his management never reached an agreement with the promoters of the show.