Undercard for Kovalev-Ward Announced
All of the matches for the undercard of the Sergey Kovalev vs. Andre Ward match-up have officially been announced, with one notable name holding a spot.
Claressa Shields, who made history by becoming the first boxer in American history to win back-to-back gold medals at the Olympics, will be making her professional debut. She will be taking on Franchon Crews, who will also be making her professional debut. These two have met before, as they fought one another in the 2012 US Olympic Trials, a bout which Shields won in upset fashion, as Crews was the then-top ranked American female middleweight.
Also on the undercard will be a battle between Brice Ritani-Coe and undefeated prospect Darmani Rock. Since debuting in May, Rock has won all five of his bouts, including four by way of TKO. This will be Ritani-Coe’s first bout since July 2015, though that was also his first fight back since fighting twice on June 4, 2014. Ritani-Coe is riding a two-fight losing skid.
An eight-round featherweight match will take place, as the undefeated Tyler McCreary will battle Vincent Jennings. With an 11-0 record coming into this fight, McCreary last fought back in August, where he scored a unanimous decision win over DeWayne Wisdom. In his first bout this year, Jennings was defeated by Jarret Jeter last month, putting him on a two-fight losing streak. Jennings only fought once in 2015, but prior to that had not lost one bout.
An eight-round battle between unbeaten heavyweights with six wins each will feature Bakhram Murtazaliev of Russia and Botirsher Obidov of Uzbekistan. Obidov scored his first TKO in his last bout, which took place in July. This will be Murtazaliev’s first bout outside of Russia. In a six-round middleweight bout, Meiirim Nursultanov will be making his professional debut, taking on Henry Beckford.