By: Hans Themistode
Before Artur Beterbiev defends both his IBF and WBC light heavyweight world titles, he’ll need to get healthy first. The unified champion’s title defense against fringe contender Adam Deines, which was set for October 23rd, will now edge closer to the end of the year as Beterbiev has suffered a rib injury during training.
A new date has not yet been named, but per a TopRank press release, they fully expect him to enter the ring before the year comes to a close.
For the Russian native, he just hasn’t been able to build off his recent success. In October of 2019, Beterbiev (15-0, 15 KOs) found himself on the winning side of a unification matchup with then undefeated WBC belt holder Oleksandr Gvozdyk.
After getting out boxed during the early rounds, Beterbiev’s non-stop pressure finally cracked his man. He tagged Gvozdyk in the tenth round to the tune of three knockdowns during the period before ultimately scoring the stoppage. The win not only gifted him with another world title, but it also preserved his perfect record and knockout ratio.
Yet, with a global pandemic, coupled with now injured ribs, Beterbiev’s ring return has been stymied.
The number six IBF contender in Deines (19-1-1, 10 KOs) won’t complain and will use the extra time to prepare.
After coming off a close loss against Fanlong Meng in mid 2019, Deines has reeled off back to back stoppage victories. With his confidence soaring and Beterbiev inching towards 36 years of age, the 29 year old Deines will look to take full advantage when he gets his first crack at a world title later on this year.