By Alexey Sukachev
Mandatory challenger Roman Karmazin (40-3-1, 26 KOs) who is starting his preparations for the upcoming IBF title shot against middleweight champion Sebastian Sylvester (33-3, 16 KOs) gave Fightnews several comments and expressed his feelings about the recent purse bid to define the organizing promoter of the event. Steven Bash of Bash Boxing, who represents IBF junior middleweight ex-titleholder, was an unexpected winner of the bid, held last Tuesday at IBF headquarters, taking advantage over Sauerland Event. Now IBF #1 Karmazin is in his hometown of Saint Petersburg getting ready to become (if successful against the German) the first Russian to acquire world titles in two weight classes.
Here is what Roman had to say: “I’m positively shocked with the outcome of the bid. I talked to Steven beforehand and he told me our chances were very slim so it came as surprise that we were able to outbid such a powerful company as Team Sauerland. Bash was the first man to tell me about this win and I couldn’t avoid crying myself out of joy and delight. It was really a grand surprise for everyone involved, including me, Steven, our partners and maybe even the German party. I wish to thank my Russian friends and partners, who were able to grant us with enough funds to take the better of Sauerland Event. Thank you guys!”
About the possible date and venue, “Nothing is resolved yet but I guess the Ice Palace in St. Petersburg will be a place to come. We don’t know the date yet but chances are high that it would be the 5th of June”.
About Sebastian Sylvester, “He is surely a strong, deserved champion with a big heart, always at his physical prime. I watched only his last fight against Billy Lyell but I noted how great his timing is. He knows the moment when it’s due to throw a punch or two and chooses the place to land perfectly. However, I don’t think he is unbeatable. I’m sure I have enough skills to exploit his weaknesses.”
About his preparations, “No, I won’t go to L.A. as usual to train there. I see no need in that as the fight will take place at my backyard. However, I need to be at my best and even better to defeat the champion. So, I’m starting to do exercises, to run and to get conditioning right away. Then, there will be time for sparring sessions. I hope a good friend of mine Gennady Martirosyan (WBO #5 ranked middleweight) will help me there. I’m also choosing between several other persons to help me in preparations. I don’t know their names yet but I guess there will be to more foreigners here. I hope Freddie Roach will be in my corner during the fight. His assistance will be very valuable.”