By: Sean Crose
Anthony Yarde is a game and terrific fighter. What’s more, he had the fight of his life Saturday night in London. He hit well, moved well, fought smart and showed the heart of a lion. Unfortuntaely for Yarde, his opponent this past weekend was IBF, WBC and WBO light heavyweight titlist Artur Beterbiev. For Beterbiev is a fighter who has the talent to remain patient while his opponent is temporarily getting the better of him, as was the case against Yarde. By continuing to apply relentless pressure, while piling on one thunderous punch after another, Beterbiev was able to stop the impressive Yarde in the seventh round.
Walking into the fight, the 19-0 Beterbiev had won every one of his previous ring encounters before the sound of the final bell. Saturday’s bout proved to be no different. Yet Sky Sports wrote beforehand that “the last time Beterbiev boxed in London was a decade ago in the 91kgs quarter-final of the 2012 Olympic Games…he lost that bout to Oleksandr Usyk, the Ukrainian who became the undisputed cruiserweight champion as a professional and is the reigning unified WBO, WBA and IBF heavyweight titlist now after beating Anthony Joshua twice.”
Sky Sports raised the question of whether or not Beterbiev would be willing to face Usyk again. “No problem,” he answered good naturedly. “If you organize.” In truth, Beterbiev holds no will will for the man who defeated him in the amateurs over a decade ago. “He’s successful. He did a good job,” he said of Usyk. “He’s a good fighter and he did a good job. I’m not really interested (in keeping up on Usyk news, it seems). I’m not following Usyk or someone else.” Still, Beterbiev wasn’t going to brush off the matter of possibly facing Usyk in the future.
“I could move up, it’s interesting but another champion is good too,” he claimed. “I try to be ready for everything. If it comes, we will try to do it.” At the very least, the battle would be an intriguing one.
Send this to a friend