By Alexey Sukachev
Following a previously announced doubleheader, the full card being presented by “World of Boxing” on May 22 in Moscow, Russia, has been announced in a series of statements and articles; both sent over media and posted on the WoB’s official portal. As always, the card will be held in GCKZ “Rossija” (State Central Concert Hall “Russia”), a part of “Luzhniki” territory.
A total of six bouts will be presented. In the main event, top-rated heavyweight Alexander Povetkin (28-1, 20 KOs) will risk his WBC Silver title against Cork-based TBRB #10 Cuban Mike Perez (21-1-1, 13 KOs). Perez, 29, is also rated #2 by the WBC, whilst Povetkin, 35, is #1 under the same sanctioning body. The bout has been ordered as a final eliminator by the World Boxing Council.
In a co-main event, WBC cruiserweight champion Grigory Drozd (39-1, 27 KOs) will defend his regalia against the fighter he had won it against – Polish former two-time champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (49-3-1, 35 KOs), 29, who is ranked #4 by the WBC and #6 by the TBRB. 35-year old Drozd is the fourth-rated TBRB cruiserweight.
A vacant IBO cruiserweight title will be contested between Rakhim Chakhkiev (22-1, 17 KOs) and Italian Mirko Larghetti (22-1, 14 KOs). Chakhkiev, 32, who is 2008 Beijing heavyweight gold medalist, is ranked #1 by the WBC, #5 by the IBF, #6 by the WBO and #11 by the WBA. He is also TBRB #8 rated cruiserweight. WBC #9 and WBO #14 Larghetti, 32, is best known for his spirited effort against WBO champion Marko Huck the last year, losing on the scorecards but being knocked out badly seconds after the final bell. Larghetti has a tune-up, scheduled for May 16 in Italy, which is most certainly getting called off.
Another highly regarded cruiserweight kayo artist Dmitry Kudryashov (17-0, 17 KOs), whose opponents have never heard the final bell, will test his lethal (to this point) power versus durable WBO #4 Namibian Vicapita Meroro (28-4, 14 KOs), 30, who is 7-0 since transition to a higher weight class from the light heavyweight division.
Kudryashov, who stopped former cruiserweight champion Juan Carlos Gomez and two-time world title challenger Francisco Palacios both inside a round in his latest fights, is rated #5 by the WBC, #6 by the WBA, and #12 by the IBF. He is also #9 ranked TBRB fighter.
In a heavyweight match-up, Manuel Charr, 30, who is just 1-2 since signing with the WoB, will try to re-establish himself versus recent world title challenger Alex Leapai (30-6-3, 24 KOs), 35, who is himself just 0-2 in 2014 with a stoppage loss to the heavyweight king Wladimir Klitschko and one-sided decision loss to Malik Scott.
Finally, undefeated super lightweight Svetlana Kulakova (9-0-1, 1 KO) will risk her WBA interim light welterweight title versus German Marie Riederer (15-2-1, 10 KOs) in a title ten-rounder.
The whole card will be announced by the Voice of Boxing, legendary Michael Buffer.