Presser in Odessa
In the main event Avtandil Khurtsidze (18-1-2, 11 KOs) will defend his WBA Inter-Continental middleweight belt in the title bout against 29-year-old Jamel «The Elegant» Bahki (19-2-2, 5 ÊÎs) from Belgium.
Vitali Klitschko: «Ukrainian fans will see three boxing stars who will step into the ring on July 18th in Odessa where with the support of world famous brand «Nemiroff» and «Inter» media-group we will hold a big fight card «Champions' Summer». Those stars are: Avtandil «Tornado» Khurtsidze, Vyacheslav «Steel Power» Uzelkov and Maks «Tiger» Bursak. Khurtsidze will be defending his WBA Inter-Continental middleweight belt for the third time. It is interesting to know that Avtandil won his belt in the same ring in Odessa in June of 2008. Khurtsidze will face a solid opposition in Jamel Bahki who won 19 fights and was defeated two times only».
Last year in Odessa Sportpalace Avtandil Khurtsidze, a Ukrainian based Georgian, clashed against an experienced Argentinean Javier Alberto Mamani for vacant WBA Inter-Continental middleweight title and got a MD victory. After that Khurtsidze successfully defeated his belt twice leaving no chance to his rivals Valentin Antonio Ochoa and Attila Kovacs. Now Khurtsidze occupies the fourth position in WBA world rankings.
A hot middleweight slugger Khurtsidze is extremely popular among boxing fans in Ukraine due to his aggressive style. He got the moniker «Crack-burglar» among his boxers associates for his specific style – Avtandil usually immediately breaks into defensive walls of his rivals.
His opponent in the upcoming bout Jamel Bahki is a solid fighter with 19 victories in his record, 2 losses only and 2 draws. After those 2 draws the Belgian won both rematches and as far as his defeats are concerned they occurred in close fights against strong boxers. One of them – Domenico Spada – recently became mandatory challenger for interim WBC middleweight title and will collide against Sebastian Zbik on July 11th in Germany. Bahki is not a puncher but at the same time he has quite a solid chin: he was neither stopped nor even dropped during his boxing career.
In the co-event of «Champions’ Summer» fight card Vyacheslav Uzelkov (20-0, 12 KOs), WBA Inter-Continental light heavyweight champion will fight in a non-title ten-rounder. In a tune-up fight he will face Istvan Varga (14-7, 5 KOs) from Romania. Uzelkov is a mandatory challenger for WBA World light heavyweight title which now decorates waist of Spaniard Gabriel Campillo (18-2-0, 6 ÊÎs). It is interesting that in September of 2007 Uzelkov and Campillo clashed in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine for vacant WBA Inter-Continental light heavyweight title and Uzelkov KO'd the Spaniard in round 6. Now «K2 East Promotions» is in the process of negotiations with Campillo’s managers.
On July 18th boxing fans also will see Maxim «The Tormentor» Bursak (18-0-1, 7 KOs) who will fight in an eight-rounder against Olegs «Viking» Fedotovs (10-6, 6 KOs) from Riga, Latvia.
Among other fighters who’ll step into the ring on the undercard of «Champions’ Summer» boxing tournament one will see Valery Brazhnik (21-0-1, 14 KOs), Alexander Spirko (5-0, 2 KOs), Nikita Lukin (9-17-2, 2 ÊÎ), Sergey Ryabchenko (8-0-0, 4 ÊÎs), undefeated middleweight from Belarus and British-Iraqi fighter Ali Adams (5-2-0, 2 ÊÎs).
Vitali Klitschko also pointed out that the upcoming fight card will be special one because it will be broadcasted all over Europe: «It will be a special event because it will be broadcasted not only for Ukrainian fans but by «Eurosport» TV channel for European fans too. We are very glad about that».
After Vitali Klitschko two boxers – Avtandil Khurtsidze and Vyacheslav Uzelkov one by one took the floor.
Avtandil Khurtsidze: «I will face a strong opponent. He is a good boxer and a real professional; however, I’m sure I’ll come out the victor. I have been training for one month and a half and completely fulfilled my training plan. As always, I plan to win by KO. In any case the bout will be quite an interesting one».
Vyacheslav Uzelkov: «In spite of almost 8 months interval in fighting I am in very good shape – although my upcoming fight is not a title bout I have been training for it like it would be a championship clash. I missed the ring very much. I do not know much about my rival so far but it does not matter. I am sure of myself and will go my way – to the world title bout».