Kudratillo Abdukakhorov has a new date and opponent for his next ring assignment.
The unbeaten welterweight contender—who has been out of the ring since Oct. 2019—will have to wait four more weeks to end his inactive period. It will prove worthwhile, as Abdukakhorov will now face Cody Crowley on April 10 as part of a Showtime-televised tripleheader, representatives from both camps confirmed to BoxingScene.com.
The show is tentatively scheduled to take place at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. Headlining the card is another terrific welterweight matchup between Philadelphia’s Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis (26-0, 24KOs; 1NC) and former 140-pound titlist Sergey Lipinets (16-1-1, 12KOs).
Uzbekistan’s Abdukakhorov was due to appear on the March 13 Showtime card headlined by former two-time super middleweight titlist David Benavidez. The 27-year old contender was forced to accept the four-week delay in plans when originally scheduled opponent Javier Flores (15-2, 13KOs)—a 34-year old southpaw from Aguadilla, Puerto Rico—was not able to get his medicals cleared in time to remain on the card.
The development came too late for event handlers to secure an approvable opponent in time for Abdukakhorov to keep the date, although his team is fine with the change of plans.
The showdown with Crowley (19-0, 9KOs) is a considerable upgrade in competition.
Crowley turned in an impressive performance in his most recent start, a 10-round unanimous decision win over Josh Torres last September on FS1, as part of a lead-in telecast to a Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on Fox show from Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. The 27-year old southpaw from Las Vegas by way of Ontario, Canada has long ago earned a reputation for his role in helping all-time great Floyd Mayweather prepare for the two highest-grossing fights in boxing history versus Manny Pacqiuao and Conor McGregor.
The time has since come for Crowley to carve out his own identity, a journey which continues in stepping up to face a legitimate Top 10 welterweight contender.
Interestingly, Abdukakhorov and Lipinets now appear on the same show months after they were due to collide in an interim IBF welterweight title fight last fall. The long-ago agreed upon bout was twice postponed and ultimately canceled when visa issues prevented Abdukakhorov from being able to leave Malaysia—where he now lives and trains—to arrive in the United States in time to go through with the fight.
Between that situation and the current change in opponents, Abdukakhorov will have spent 18 months out of the ring by fight night next month. His last ring appearance came in a technical decision win over former welterweight titlist Luis Collazo in an Oct. 2019 ESPN-televised bout from Philadelphia.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox