By Per Ake Persson
WBA I/C champ Ryad Merhy (23-0) defends the title against American Nick Kisner (19-3-1) at the Spiroudome Arena in Charleroi in Belgium on December 16. The show is staged by 12 Rounds Promotion. Merhy is ranked # 3 by the WBA and # 11 by the WBO and a world title fight could be near depending on how the World Boxing Super Series Tournament develops.
It´s official: IBO light heavy champ Igor Mikhalkin (20-1) defends the title in Le Cannet (France) on December 2 but not against Mickael Diallo as planned. Diallo is unfortunately sidelined with an injury and is replaced by veteran Doudou Ngumbu (31-4).
It´s the third time Mikhalkin and Ngumbu clash and it´s been close both times with Igor winning a split decision in France in 2013 and a majority decision in Germany back in 2009.
Mikhalkin, from Russia, is promoted by EC Boxing in Hamburg, who during December also has Karo Murat defending the EBU 175 lb title against Dominic Boesel and heavyweight Christian Hammer up against Alexander Povetkin.
Cruiserweight prospect Tervel Pulev (5-0) headlines a memorial show for the late Fritz Sdunek, one of the best coaches in what used to be East Germany and later a top class trainer for Universum, on November 18 in Neustadt Glewe (Germany).
Tervel will of course have big brother Kubrat with him in the corner when he takes on Georgian veteran Mikheil Khutsishvili, who began his long career as a welterweight.
Two-time Olympic medallist Paddy Barnes is the third member of Belfast’s famous fighting ‘Three Amigos’ featuring in big bouts tonight with the European amateur champion and WBO European flyweight champion aiming to claim his second pro belt.
The 30-year-old (4-0 as a pro) takes on experienced Nicaraguan Eliecer Quezada (21-6-3) after some drama on the scales yesterday.
Barnes was forced to strip off in front of his Belfast fans in order to make the 112lb flyweight limit, with trainer Danny Vaughan shadowing the fighter with a towel as he successfully weighed in.
However, Quezada was unable to make the weight after two attempts, meaning the vacant WBO inter-continental title will only be on the line for Barnes when they clash tonight.
“It doesn’t make a difference to me,” said Barnes. “I still have a job to do. I had to whip off my boxers to make the weight, but I was happy to give the fans something to get excited about!
“I want a world title and I want one now. This will show me where I’m at. Maybe it’s too soon to take on such an experienced fighter at this early stage, but we’ll soon find out. I need to win this to get where I want to go.”
A total of 11 MTK Global-managed fighters feature on the ‘Frampton Reborn’ fight card, which will get underway at 4.30pm (approx) with TV coverage starting at on BoxNation from 7.25pm and on BT Sport 1 from 8.30pm.