Kovalev to Beterbiev: ‘Get in Line’
WBO Light Heavyweight Champion Sergey Kovalev brushed off a call out from a fellow champion in his division, IBF champ Artur Beterbiev.
Kovalev and mandatory challenger Anthony Yarde are slated to face off on August 24, though there has also been an expressed possibility of a superfight between him and current two-division champion Canelo Alvarez.
But when Kovalev won his WBO championship back in February with a dominant win over Eleider Alvarez, he expressed interest in getting some revenge on an old rival in Beterbiev with a title unification bout. Beterbiev scored two wins over Kovalev in an amateur tournament in Russia, in which Kovalev claims he was robbed on the scorecards.
Beterbiev recently sent a message to Kovalev, claiming he has welcomed a fight with his Russian rival and Top Rank stablemate but Kovalev has now ignored him.
“Hi, Sergey Kovalev. After your rematch against Eleider Alvarez you regained the WBO title and told the media you wanted a unification fight against me. I immediately agreed and instructed my promoter to contact your team and organize the fight,” Beterbiev said. “And despite your numerous interviews about your desire to fight me, you have not still accepted my invitation. So I am addressing this invitation to you again, but this time personally and publicly.
Sergey, let’s put an end to our boxing relationship once and for all! No plausible reason could be given to prevent our fight from happening: a unification title bout is a top priority for any major boxing organization and Top Rank would only welcome such a fight.
“In Russia you were nicknamed ‘Noodles’ and in the US you named yourself ‘Krusher.’ So which of these nicknames suits you best? It depends on your answer. Our fans are waiting for it. I am waiting for it. The clock is ticking.”
Kovalev, in response, laughed at his opponents’ words and claimed to be too busy with Yarde, who the WBO ordered Kovalev to defend his title against next. He opted to even not mention Beterbiev by name.
“I have read the information on the internet that the IBF belt holder in my division is excited and wants a unification fight with me,” Kovalev said. “So, I will answer you about this. For now he can stand in line. According to the plan, I have a mandatory defense against Anthony Yarde from England.”
Original Story: Boxing Scene