By Jake Donovan
Juergen Braehmer bides his time for an eventual title shot with a rare homecoming, fighting at home for just the third time in his career when he faces Italy's Stefano Abatangelo on August 24 in Schwerin, Germany.
The bout marks the first promotional venture into the Northeastern Germany city for Sauerland Event, with whom Braehmer signed earlier this year. The showdown with Abatangelo is his third under the Sauerland banner, and his first trip home in more than a year.
“It was a good decision to move to Team Sauerland," acknowledges Braehmer (40-2, 31KO), who has won nine straight dating back to 2009. "After signing with them I became the European Champion in February, and then I defended my title against Tony Averlant back in April."
Abatangelo (17-2-1, 6KO) fights outside of his native Italy for the first time in his career, but brings to Germany a 12-fight unbeaten streak.
“He will do everything he can to take the EBU Title back home to Italy," notes Hagen Doering, Director of Sports for Sauerland Event.
At risk for Braehmer is a mandatory title shot against Cleverly, which is expected to come later this year. The light heavyweight contender views the August fight as a necessary risk, means to stay active against quality opposition rather than grow stale on the sidelines waiting for an eventual title fight to materliaze.
"The second fight in Hamburg (versus Averlant) proved that I have developed over the past few months and I think I haven’t reached my peak yet, so there is still more to come," Braehmer suggests. "The fight against Abatangelo should give me even more confidence ahead of the world championship fight.”
Braehmer's last defeat came at the championship level, dropping a competitive 12-round decision to then titlist Hugo Gary in Nov. '09. Nine straight wins have followed, including two in his hometown of Schwerin.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox