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Sergiy Derevyanchenko “Frontrunner” For Jermall Charlo Says Trainer Ronnie Shields


By: Hans Themistode

Middleweight contender Sergiy Derevyanchenko has found himself on the losing end of two razor close decisions in championship contests. The first came against Daniel Jacobs in October of 2017 for the vacant IBF crown. The second, ironically enough, also had the vacant IBF title up for grabs in October of 2019 against Gennadiy Golovkin. 

For Derevyanchenko, he’s hoping that the third time’s the charm. At the moment, he finds himself rated number one in the WBC sanctioning body. Standing in between Derevyanchenko and his first title reign, is belt holder Jermall Charlo. 

There is interest from Charlo and his trainer Ronnie Shields in a possible showdown. However, if it were up to them, they would much rather a high profile fight with another belt holder in the division.

“I definitely want to see him fight Canelo,” said Shields to Ray Flores of Premier Boxing Champions. “Right now we have a guy that’s ranked at number one in the world right now, that’s Sergiy Derevyanchenko. We’re looking at him and I think right now he’s probably the frontrunner for who we’ll fight next. We just want to fight the best guys. Jermall says every day, he tells me every day ‘I just want to fight the best guys out there.”

A fight with Canelo was Charlo’s for the taking. Or at least, that’s what he believed just last year. The middleweight belt holder spent the better part of 2018 and 2019, running through his competition. Wins over Jorge Sebastian Heiland and Hugo Centeno Jr. netted him the WBC interim title and a number one ranking within the sanctioning body. 

Holding the full title at the time, was none other than Alvarez. For Charlo, he believed that he backed his man into a corner where he was given no other choice but to face him inside of the ring. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman elevated Alvarez to “Franchise” champion, which left Charlo without a date with the man he had been chasing. 

According to Sulaiman, a franchise champion is free from making mandatory title defenses. The elevation of Alvarez worked in Charlo’s favor as well as he was awarded full champion status, but a matchup with Alvarez once again slipped through his fingers.

“We really thought that once he became the number one contender, the fight would be easy to make,” explained Shields. 

Charlo has now taken another route in order to face Canelo. He’s hoping that beating the likes of Derevyanchenko and whoever else is placed in front of him will “draw Canelo out.” 

Even with Alvarez competing in several weight divisions, the six foot tall Charlo is alright with chasing him down.  

“Maybe he will see that he’s beating all these guys and goes back down to 160 or we’ll go up to 168 to fight him.”

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