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Duva: Zhang Zhilei Proved That He Belongs in Heavyweight Mix

On Saturday, November 30th, Roc Nation Sports’ Chinese heavyweight star Zhang “Big Bang” Zhilei (21-0, 16 KOs) dominated tough veteran contender  Andriy Rudenko (32-5, 20 KOs) of Ukraine in a 10 round bout at the Casino de Monte-Carlo in Monaco. Zhilei has now skyrocketed to the top of the heavyweight division, beating Rudenko by way of unanimous decision. The score was 99-91, 98-92, 97-93.

“Being away from the ring for 14 months, I really enjoyed how I felt during the fight,” said Zhilei. “I like such an opponent that could bring the real challenge. He can really take a punch and is hell of a fighter. I dream to face opponents like this, I want to challenge the strongest.” 

zhilei-rudenko (13)

With this win, “Big Bang” has exploded back onto the heavyweight scene, placing him amongst the biggest names in the division. Zhilei now expects to be ranked among the best Heavyweight contenders and will look to take on more to contenders in order to realize his dream of fighting for the world, heavyweight championship. Zhilei and his team expect 2020 to be a monumental and historic year for the Chinese heavyweight. 

“It was wonderful seeing ‘Big Bang’ Zhilei’s return to the ring,” said Roc Nation Sports boxing promoter Dino Duva.

“He proved to the world that he deserves to be in the mix for a heavyweight title shot in 2020.  Quite frankly, he showed a little ring rust, but he hasn’t fought in 14 months. He has dealt with a lot of obstacles over the past 2 years, mostly due to unfairly being held up on his U.S. visa. Not many fighters would have taken an opponent the caliber of Rudenko after being off for so long, but that’s what he wanted, and I commend him for that.

"He had Rudenko, who has a granite head, hurt a few times, and it would have been great to see him get a knockout, but it was good for him to get the rounds in. Also, Zhilei’s trainer, Shaun George, is doing a great job with him. His next fight will be against a world rated contender in early 2020. If he keeps working hard to get into tip-top shape, the sky’s the limit for him and my prediction is he will fight for the Heavyweight Championship in 2020.

"I sincerely thank Eddie Hearn, Frank Smith and the entire Matchroom Boxing team for this opportunity and look forward to working together with them to continue ‘Big Bang’s’ historic journey.”

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by richardt on 12-02-2019

How do you prove you are in the mix without fighting someone in the mix or at least near the mix??? Andriy Rudenko isnt on anyone's lips except the announcer before the start of the fight.

Comment by _Rexy_ on 12-02-2019

[QUOTE=Lemonhead_Jeff;20225260]Who is the "she" that you speak of? Did you even bother to read the article?[/QUOTE] Not at all. At this point, I just assume Duva is Kathy and not Dino or Lou...since he's dead and all.

Comment by YoungManRumble on 12-02-2019

[QUOTE=Lemonhead_Jeff;20225260]Who is the "she" that you speak of? Did you even bother to read the article?[/QUOTE] He prolly assumed it was Kathy Duva who you see and hear more of than Dino Duva usually.

Comment by Lemonhead_Jeff on 12-02-2019

[QUOTE=_Rexy_;20225105]Well, All the big heavyweights need tune up opponents. She didnt say that Zhang was one of the decent ones, did she? :lol1: Zhang vs Ruiz Jr would be such a lopsided speed disadvantage. Would be insane to watch.[/QUOTE] Who…

Comment by baroidi on 12-02-2019

Zhang vs Joyce would be a fun fight, but I would have to watch the replay and play it at 2x speed.

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