Sergey Lyakhovich To Return On Valuev-Haye Card?

by James Slater - Former WBO heavyweight champion Sergey Lyakhovich of Belarus has not been seen in or near a boxing ring for quite some time. In fact, the 33-year-old "White Wolf" has only boxed twice in the last three years; losing both bouts. Back in November of 2006, in defending the WBO belt he won in a thriller of a 12-rounder with "Relentless" Lamon Brewster, Lyakhovich was sensationally knocked clean out of the ring in the 12th and final round of his fight with Shannon Briggs, and in his next fight, which took place in February of last year, Sergey was shut out over 12 by current WBA ruler Nikolai Valuev..

Now, some 21 months on from his UD setback at the hands of the towering Russian, Lyakhovich is set (according to Box Rec) to fight again on the under-card of Valuev's defence against David Haye on November 7th in Nuremberg. So far no opponent has been named for the 33-year-old who is now 23-3(14) but it will be interesting to see what Lyakhovich looks like in his return.

Still young enough to make a further impression on the division at 33, there could also be some interesting fights to be made for the man who has good wins over fighters such as Friday Ahunanya, Dominick Guinn and Brewster to his name. Once he's gotten the ring-rust off, Lyakhovich could be a good opponent for a number of top names. How about a return with the also comebacking Brewster, for instance?

Their first fight, held back in April of 2006, was a most enjoyable battle. Though both guys are older and slower now we could stand to see the two big men going at it in a second fight couldn't we? Or could Lyakhovich, who has only ever been stopped two times as a pro, by Briggs, and in 2002 by Maurice Harris, be a good test for a guy like Chris Arreola? And what about a rematch with the aforementioned Briggs?

Okay, on second thoughts maybe that's not such a great idea. The last few seconds of the 2006 bout aside, Briggs-Lyakhovich I was a pretty dull affair, after all. But these guys, the heavyweight veterans who insist on coming back, have to fight somebody - why not match them up with fighters who are at or around their own age. It's either that or put them in with young guys who are either on their way up and need a test or are on the way back from a loss and need a re-test.

Lyakhovich, while still a former champ who has seen better days, is a rather unusual case. Despite having been a pro for over ten years, "The White Wolf" has only had 26 paid fights. Also, the Brewster fight aside, he hasn't really taken all that much punishment. With only three losses to his name, it's easy to see why Lyakhovich would want to come back.

Let's first see how he looks in his scheduled eight-rounder next month, but then maybe the former WBO champ will go on to engage in some reasonably big fights.

Article posted on 23.10.2009

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