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Feature Story

Q&A: Nikolay Valuev

By Alexey “Oscar” Potapov

Sauerland Event

In an exclusive interview, former WBA heavyweight champion Nikolay Valuev (50-2, 34 KOs) spoke about a possible fight against WBC heavyweight Vitali Klitschko (40-2, 38 KOs), as well as a rematch against David Haye (24-1, 22 KOs). The largest heavyweight champion in boxing history also said he’s staying in shape as he waits to make his next move.

Nikolay, a long time has passed after your last fight against David Haye. When do you plan to return to the ring? Or are you now having a rest from boxing?

I will have a rest from boxing upon the termination of my career as a boxer. Currently I continue to train with my trainer Alexander Zimin and we have spent a long time preparing. It was planned that I would return to the ring in the spring or in the summer, but now I won’t fight til the the autumn.

Will you be fighting Odlanier Solis in an eliminator to become the mandatory challenger to WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko?

No, that fight fell through. The promoters didn’t manage to agree to a deal.

In the contract with David Haye, there was a clause which allowed you to organize a rematch. Has the term of this rematch clause expired? Personally, would you like to get in the ring again with Haye?

My German promoters have not informed me about such a clause. Besides it’s not interesting to me to fight a boxer who is engaged in a ring in track and field meet in the ring.

Recollecting fight against Haye, if it was possible to go back in time to that fight what would you change?

Maybe in tactical boxing I incorrectly carried out the plan, but I don’t feel that I lost. Haye didn’t really become world champion.

Nikolay millions of boxing fans are following your negotiations with Vitali Klitschko. Why can’t you agree?

Money. Boxing is business. Conditions which were offered by Vitali which didn’t satisfy either my promoters or me. Klitschko likes to say that it’s Don King, but the Klitschko brothers stack everything in their favor and they don’t think about the interests of others. It’s impossible to deal with them.

Vitali has said that you are afraid of him…

I am not afraid of him! Let him send us a good fight contract! He says he’ll give me $1.5 million dollars, but I won’t get this money. I have a big team.

Is it true that you have demanded from Klitschko a percentage from the TV rights?

Yes, and that has probably also been a reason of the termination of negotiations.

There was news that you and your manager Boris Dimitrov are no longer together.

Yes, but it hasn’t changed our relationship. He’s the father of my wife, and all is very good.

Recently Vitali was in Saint Petersburg. You met him?

Yes. Vitali called me and asked whether I was in the city. I answered yes, we met, had some coffee, and discussed our possible fight. Vitali has offered me $1.5 million for the fight, but for such money Don King can’t agree. I will not fight Vitali if he doesn’t offer more money for the fight.

Fightnews.com wrote that a Klitschko-Valuev could be in October.

This date to me was offered by Vitali Klitschko, which suits me. If the promoters can come to an agreement, I assure you that I can be in good condition.

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