The upcoming fights cast their shadows: on April 17 in Magdeburg (Zbik vs. Spada) and April 24 Hamburg (Kentikian vs. Raoui) Universum Box-Promotion will present two “Universum Champions Nights”. In order to be in perfect shape some Universum fighters have set up their training camp in the Austrian Alps to build up their fitness level. At the beginning of February trainer Magomed Schaburow took his team including Ruslan Chagaev, Susi Kentikian, Vitali Tajbert, Dimitri Sartison, Eduard Gutknecht and Alexander Alekseev to the skiing resort Soelden. Hansi Neuner and his team of Universum Partner of Boxing Austria have once again provided the best possible training opportunities.
Magomed Schaburow: “This training camp was chosen to set up the basis for the whole year. I am working with my athletes three times a day. This includes working in a team as well as lifting weights and climbing. We went up to 3.000 m with Ruslan Chagaev and Susi Kentikian.”
The purse bid of the WBA for the heavyweight eliminator fight between Ruslan Chagaev and Kali Meehan had been cancelled on short notice. Universum Box- Promotion and Meehan Promoter Don King have reached an agreement that Universum will stage the fight. Universum vice Dietmar Poszwa: “In a short time the date and the venue will be confirmed. I’m very happy for Ruslan that he will get this chance to become world champion after the defeat against Wladimir Klitschko. After a victorious fight against Meehan he will be facing the reigning WBA champ David Haye.”
Chagaev trainer Magomed Schaburow: “We are looking forward to the fight against Meehan. We could fight tomorrow if we need to. We have been in full training since September and it would be the first fight for Ruslan and me as a team. We have to see how it goes and on which level we are. There are boxers which are champions during their training and sparring sessions but it’s more important what you can deliver in a real fight.”
Since the summer of 2009 Schaburow is working with Ruslan Chagaev. Schaburow: “Ruslan is very fast and he is working very hard. His fitness level is good and he implements the given tasks. He is doing a lot of team work with Cruiserweight Alekseev. I’m very satisfied.”
Ruslan Chagaev is very happy about the fight: “I want to become a world champion again and want to make changes in my style compared to my fight against Wladimir Klitschko in June 2009. I took my time to think and now I’m extremely motivated to implement and carry out the things I have learned. I’m feeling great and want to show that inside the ring. I will do everything that I will win this fight. Meehan is not as tall as Valuev but he is about 6′ 4. I like to fight against taller opponents.” For his first fight after the defeat last year Chagaev has been working extremely hard: “It has been a very hard training for me here. Due to the high altitude the air is quite thin but that’s a basis for building up my fitness and power. We have a great team spirit and a great mood. I’m ready. Watch out and be ready Kali!”
Also in Soelden are Cruiserweight hopeful Alexander Alekseev, who prepares for a fight in May as well as the world champions Vitali Tajbert (WBC Interim Super Feather) and Dimitri Sartison (WBA Super Middle). Sartison shares a room with Eduard Gutknecht. “Eddy” Gutknecht will have the chance of his lifetime on April 17 when he challenges WBO Super Middlweight world champion Robert Stieglitz in Magdeburg: “It was a good choice with my “roomie”. We laugh a lot and have a good time. He adds: “We have here the perfect conditions, the fresh mountain air and an amazing view. We have to work extremely hard while others are here on their skiing holiday. Three times a day the alarm clock is set for 6:00 am. I’m so excited about the Stieglitz fight and I have been highly motivated from the first day in our training camp. We can work here very focussed and when we return to Hamburg on Sunday we will start concentrating on the boxing skills.”
The “Queen of the team” Susi Kentikian stated that this has been the hardest training camp she has ever been in. The “Killer Queen” commented: “Never in my life before I have been running so many hills up and down. ” After all the team also enjoyed a fun session when they had a photo shooting with the Felt Ötztal x-bionic World cup cycling team.