WBO world light-heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly and challenger Sergey Kovalev will collide at the Cardiff Motorpoint Arena on Saturday 17th August in an explosive clash of unbeaten fighters. Cleverly, 26, puts his title on the line for the sixth time against the iron-fisted Russian who’s knocked out 19 of 21 opponents with a staggering 18 coming inside three rounds. The fight will be televised live on HBO. Cleverly is delighted that he’s got the fight he wanted and is now focused inflicting the first defeat on Kovalev’s record and prove that’s he’s not invincible.
“I’m over the moon that Kovalev has confirmed that he’s fighting me,” said Cleverly. “I’ve wanted Kovalev all along and I spoke to my promoter Frank Warren and said that this is the guy I want to fight. He’s making big waves in America and he’s a fighter that people know. His knockouts are frightening to watch and give you a neck mohican, but that’s when I perform to my best, when the adrenalin is flowing and the odds are stacked against me. This will be Kovalev’s thunder against my lightening and he is going to get a serious shock. The viewers in the UK are going to see something special on BoxNation and I’m delighted that the fight will be in America on HBO, the market that I’m looking to conquer next.”
“Krusher” Kovalev is so confident that he can beat Cleverly that he is happy to travel outside of the US and Russia for the first time to face the Welsh hero in his backyard. The 30-year-old from Chelyabinsk, who now fights out of Florida, dropped Cornelius White three times on-route to a third round stoppage last Saturday and is ready for his first world title challenge. “My goal has always been to win the world title as soon as possible,” Kovalev said. “So I decided to take the first opportunity that was offered to me. And I have dreamed for many years about fighting on HBO. I look forward to going to Wales to fight with Cleverly and I congratulate him for accepting this challenge.”
Cleverly’s promoter Frank Warren believes it will be great fight. “This is a fantastic opportunity for Nathan against a very dangerous and massive puncher where he can really take his name to the next level.” Said Warren. “Kovalev is getting big praise in America and they are really excited by him so if Nathan beats him and does it spectacularly then his stock will rise ten-fold. Remember, Jeff Lacy was the next big thing until he came across Joe Calzaghe and I think in this case Kovalev is Nathan’s Lacy. It’s going to be an exciting fight and one that you can’t miss.”
Kovalev’s promoter Kathy Duva from Main Events believes her fighter will be crowned world champion in the Welsh capital. She said, “Sergey is very excited to get the chance to win his first world title on August 17th in Wales. This cannot help but be a non-stop, all-action brawl. The real winners will be the fans who get to watch this great fight in Wales, on HBO in the United States, Box Nation and throughout the rest of the world, including Sergey’s home country of Russia.”