IBF: Beterbiev vs. Koelling Officially Approved For Vacant Title

By Luke Furman

Th reshaping of the light heavyweight division has officially begun. Two weeks ago, IBF, WBA, WBO light heavyweight world champion Andre Ward shocked everyone by announcing his retirement from the sport.

With has withdrawal from the sport, there will be three new champions in the sport.

On November 11 in Fresno, California - top contenders Artur Beterbiev (11-0, 11 KOs) and Enrico Koelling (23-1, 6 KOs) will collide. ESPN will televise the contest as part of their TV deal with Top Rank.

artur-beterbiev (10)_3

The fight between Beterbiev and Koelling was originally set as an IBF final eliminator, with the winner receiving an immediate shot at Ward.

But now with Ward's retirement, the IBF has advised that Beterbiev vs. Koelling has been officially approved as a world title fight.

"The IBF has received official notification that IBF light heavyweight champion Andre Ward has retired leaving that title vacant.  The Artur Beterbiev vs. Enrico Koelling bout originally scheduled to be an eliminator for the #1 position has been given formal sanction approval and will be for the IBF vacant light heavyweight championship," the IBF confirmed in a statement.

The promotional future of Beterbiev is still not clear. He is currently going through a legal battle with Yvon Michel of Canada. The fight with Koelling was secured by Top Rank, because they won the IBF's purse bid. If Beterbiev is able to break away from Michel, he is likely going to sign with Top Rank. Michel claims to have a lot of time left on his promotional agreement with Beterbiev.

Koelling has won his last seven fights, since losing a decision to Mirco Ricci in February 2015.

Beterbiev will be returning to the ring after a nearly one year layoff. He was in the ring back in December, when he broke down and stopped Isidro Ranoni Prieto.

Luke Furman covers boxing for

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Lou Cipher on 09-28-2017

[QUOTE=bluebeam;18097067]how did ward turn his back on his fans? all his fans seem to be happy that he went out as the wba,ibf,wbo light heavyweight champion of the world. no losses[/QUOTE] Because he ducked GGG, ducked Stevenson, ducked Bellew and…

Comment by bluebeam on 09-28-2017

[QUOTE=Lou Cipher;18096003]Nah he was WAY overpaid by Roc Nation and they lost major cash on him to date. There's no way they would have let him do a fight that didn't yield some kind of return potential. Ward turned his…

Comment by kennyrealchan on 09-28-2017

I actually would like to see how ward would work on beterbiev given that beterbiev seems to be a more complete package when compare with kovalev...yet ward body seems to wear down quite alot when I checked out his fight…

Comment by Pigeons on 09-28-2017

Beterbiev and Bivol are getting easy rides to a world title. Let's see what happens with Gvozdyk and the WBO. Kovalev is currently #2 but something tells me Top Rank will maneuver him into a fight with an easier opponent…

Comment by GGG Gloveking on 09-28-2017

A eurobum fighting for a vacant title, imagine that. Next, he'll be dragging up welters

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (9)
Top Headlines Felix Valera, Luis Lebron Grab Knockout Wins in Santo Domingo Sam Soliman, Wes Capper Fight To a Twelve Round Draw Ryuya Yamanaka Retains WBO Strap, Canizales Wins WBA Belt Photos: Gvozdyk Earns WBC Shot, Michael Conlan Excites Crowd Joe Joyce-Dereck Chisora Likely To Be Confirmed For Bellew-Haye Photos: Jose Ramirez Breaks Down Amir Imam For WBC Belt Roach: Linares Has Fight Left in Him; Might Be Too Old for Loma Photos: Antonio Lozada Drills, Stops Felix Verdejo in Shocker Photos: Joe Joyce With Crushing One-Punch KO of Donnie Palmer CompuBox: Jose Ramirez's Pressure, Power Shots Was Difference Robert Helenius Wins Split Decision Over Yury Bykhautsou Gvozdyk: I Want The Stevenson vs. Jack Winner in My Next Fight! Giovanni Cabrera Mioletti Shocks Ray Lampkin With KO in Two Lozada: I Knew I Would KO Felix Verdejo, I Went For it in Tenth Cristian Mijares Gets Stoppage Win Over Fernando Saucedo Jaime Munguia Knocks Out Johnny Navarrete in The Third Roach: Ramirez Won Every Round, 2 Judges Should Be Investigated! Don King: Imam Didn't Throw Enough, Ramirez Was Relentless Michael Conlan Demolishes David Berna in Two Rounds Jose Ramirez Lands Gold, Decisions Amir Imam For WBC Title Jose Ramirez vs. Amir Imam - LIVE BoxingScene Scorecard Gvozdyk Wins Tough Decision Over Amar, in Line For WBC Shot Ramirez: I'm Ready To Fight Best, No Matter What Critics Think Yeison Cohen Passes Away After KO Loss Earlier This Month Antonio Lozada Drops, Stops Felix Verdejo in Tenth Round Joe Joyce Destroys Donnie Palmer With Big Knockout in One Christopher Diaz Wins by TKO, Rodriguez Suffers Hand Injury Jose Pedraza Sheds Rust, Pounds Out Decision Over Rodriguez Whittom Dies After Being in 10 Month Coma Following KO Loss McKinley: Ramirez Doesn't Have Power, Imam By Far Best Opponent Danny O'Connor, Steve Claggett To Collide at House of Blues Roach: Imam Isn't Anything Special; Ramirez Should Stop Him Virgil Hunter Hospitalized Due To Health Scare, Recovering Jose Ramirez: I Learned So Much Working With Pacquiao, Cotto Sam Maxwell Moves To 6-0, Returns In Belfast Next Month Jose Ramirez vs. Amir Imam: Stats & Stakes Prograis Leaning Toward Ramirez Over Imam in '50-50 Fight' Don King: Imam Will Knock Out Ramirez; Give Us Pacquiao Next Luis Ortiz Coach Talks Loss, Confident Wilder is KO'd in Rematch Daily Bread Mailbag: Canelo, Mikey Garcia, PEDs in Boxing, More

Latest Active Forum Threads