Sergiy Derevyanchenko still has his sights set on world titles in 2020, despite the COVID-19 outbreak putting a temporary halt on his progression towards the world title.
Derevyanchenko had arrived back Andre Rozier's Team Havoc's Brooklyn base in mid-February to begin training for a return in the middle of the year and had been sparring with the likes of highly-rated New Yorkers Edgar Berlanga, Joe Williams and Marcus Browne amongst other talents emerging from Andre Rozier's stable as well as Staten Island-based Gary Stark Sr's sister stable.
The Ukrainian was involved in arguably one of the fights of 2019, as he dropped a controversial decision against IBF/IBO world middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin, in a fight that really established 'The Technician' as one of the world's elite at 160. Derevyanchenko opened up about his return to clash with Golovkin and his plans for 2020.
The former Team Ukraine amateur standout said - "I look back at the fight with Golovkin and I am happy that the fans enjoyed it so much. It was a great fight and it was a privilege to be involved in such a great fight. I have to thank Andre Rozier, Gary Stark Sr, Sergiy Korchynskyy Jr for getting me ready for that fight and of course Keith Connolly, Lou DiBella and Eddie Hearn along with GGG Promotions who made it possible.
"I really felt like I showed the world the level I am at in that fight and I believe that I am still improving. I want the opportunity to get back in the ring and show that I am still an improving fighter. When you work with elite level fighters like Joe Williams, Edgar Berlanga and Marcus Browne you have to be at your best. They push you to improve and I do my best to always try to learn from everyone inside the Havoc Camp.
Derevyanchenko has since returned to Ukraine with his family following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the all-action middleweight remains in good spirits despite his ring return potentially being set back.
The world middleweight title challenger stated, "I was really enjoying training in Brooklyn with Andre Rozier and the team but of course it is important to be close to your family at this moment as it's a very serious situation so that is why I went back to Ukraine. My prayers are with the families of those affected by the virus all over the world. Boxing has to wait as we need to make sure the public is healthy first and foremost.
"I still believe 2020 will be a good year for me and I'm excited to get back to Brooklyn when I am permitted to do so and get back into the mix for the likes of a fight with Jermall Charlo and Canelo Alvarez. I would love a rematch with Golovkin if that was on the table but these are the level of fights I want to be involved in when I return as I am focused on becoming world middleweight champion."