Wladimir Klitschko Still Interested In Facing Alexander Povetkin, Says He’ll Be “Disappointed” If Povetkin Loses To Hasim Rahman

By James Slater: Heavyweight top dog Wladimir Klitschko, the Ring Magazine, IBF, WBA, WBO, IBO king, has set his stall out. Set to take on 40-year-old Tony Thompson in a rematch in July, “Dr. Steel Hammer” is looking at facing a couple of young contenders afterwards.

Klitschko has recently spoken about his desire to fight in America at the end of the year, primarily to make up for his last bout on U.S soil: that terribly dull points win he picked up against Sultan Ibragimov in Feb. 2008. Wladimir, recently turned 36 and seemingly at his mental and physical peak, says he wants to show the American fans he can provide exciting fights, and two young contenders, in Chris Arreola and the unbeaten Seth Mitchell, are the two U.S fighters Klitschko has in mind for defending against in November.

Another fighter Wladimir has interest in facing, and has done for some time now, is unbeaten Russian Alexander Povetkin, the “regular” WBA heavyweight champ. Povetkin, under the guidance of former trainer Teddy Atlas, withdrew from a date with Klitschko some months back, agreeing with the Friday Night Fights commentator that he was not yet ready for the giant task. Klitschko has kept an eye on the former Olympian since though.

Next up for Povetkin will be a mandatory defence of his “regular” title against veteran former ruler Hasim Rahman. Wladimir feels Povetkin will win that one, and then hopefully face him soon afterwards.

“I’ll be surprised and disappointed [if Povetkin loses to Rahman],” Wladimir told “After all, he is one of the contenders to fight me. I am the WBA super champion, and he owns the ‘regular title.’ In general, the presence of several belts looks a bit strange. I became the champion of this organisation only last July when I beat Haye, so I myself can’t fully explain their rules. Probably, that’s the way they promote our future match.

“I’m interested in Povetkin.”

As we all know, Wladimir does not have to defeat Povetkin to in any way prove he is the real WBA heavyweight champ, and any “unification” tag the promoters would possibly add to the fight if it happened would be viewed with nothing but cynicism from the fans. Still, as Wladimir said, this is what will likely happen; IF Povetkin ever agrees to step up and challenge the world’s number-one, that is.

Once he’s gotten Rahman out of the way (as he surely will in July, barring a big upset), Povetkin must then focus on stepping in with the real heavyweight king. Klitschko is fast running out of adequate challengers, and unless “Nightmare” Arreola (a loser to big brother Vitali) or “Mayhem” Mitchell can sensationally upset Wladimir at the end of the year, it should be Povetkin’s turn to try early in 2013. But does Povetkin actually want to try and become a real world champion?

Article posted on 28.04.2012

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