Whilst Billy Joe Saunders makes his return this Saturday fighting in a leisure centre, over in Moscow the IBF & WBA Cruiserweight Champion Denis Lebedev takes on undefeated challenger 24 year old Murat Gassiev. Lebedev comes into the fight with a record of 29-2-0 (22ko’s) and Gassiev comes in with a record of 23-0-0 (17ko’s)
There is quite a significant age difference between the two Russians, Lebedev aged 37 and Gassiev coming in aged just 23. Gassiev is a big puncher and stands 4 inches taller than Lebedev which will likely give the champion problems. Lebedev is a huge draw in Russia and a domestic clash on home soil is a big deal this weekend.
Photo Credit – (@denislebedev_official)
I absolutely love watching Lebedev fight, the guy is a machine. One of the scariest looking blokes in the sport, his style of boxing will clash nicely with Gassiev’s as both men are come forward fighters that can carry a bang. Both men will be looking for the knockout and its likely to be a war.
The Cruiserweight division is exciting at the moment and this year it has gained two new world champions in Tony Bellew and Oleksandr Usyk. With Bellew fighting Haye at heavyweight its unsure whats going to happen with his WBC strap, but a fight in the future against Lebedev in Russia would be class. The last time Lebedev fought on British soil he stopped Enzo Maccarinelli and left the Welshman’s face in pieces.
Most known for his war with Guillermo Jones back in 2013, Lebedev suffered one of the most brutal injuries in the sport, ending up looking like an alien with an eye injury that almost cost him his career. He also was criticized over his knockout of Roy Jones Jr, Jones was out on his feet and unconscious up against the ropes when Lebedev hit him cleanly in the head even though he knew the referee should have intervened and stopped the fight. Leaving Jones unconscious on the floor for five minutes.
Sky have announced the fight will now be live on Sky Sports 5 from 7pm