UK Boxing: Sergey Rabchenko; Bradley Saunders
MANAGER Philippe Fondu believes European light-middleweight champion Sergey Rabchenko could soon earn the right to box for a world title.
The European Boxing Union (EBU) has this week nominated Italy’s Emanuele Della Rosa to face the Ricky Hatton-trained Belarussian within the next six months.
And with both boxers ranked in top five by the WBC, Fondu feels that the match-up may well double up as a final eliminator for Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez’s 154lb crown.
“At this moment in time, it is difficult to say who will be the WBC world champion in nine months, as Saul Alvarez might face Floyd Mayweather, but some great opportunities are waiting for the winner of Rabchenko – Della Rosa,” he said,
“For Sergey a world title is the ultimate goal and I’m convinced that, with the support of Ricky Hatton, the sky is the limit”.
Unbeaten Rabchenko defeated a mandatory challenger when he saw off tough French southpaw Cedric Vitu on points in November so is able to make a voluntary defence of his title in the interim if he wishes.
No matter when the fight mandatory fight is made, Rachenko is sure to come up against a worthy adversary.
32-year-old Della Rosa is already the WBC International champion and his only defeat in 32 professional contests came on a split decision in a world title fight with the well-respected Sebastian Zbik.
SAUNDERS RECOVERING FROM SURGERY
North East’s unbeaten professional boxer, Bradley Saunders has undergone career changing surgery.
After suffering for a long time, the decision to operate came after injuring the hand in the 5th round of last fight against Peter McDonagh.
“Got it done 19th December, they took bone from my hip. I’ve always had problems with it and triggered it in the 5th round of my last fight against Peter McDonagh.”
Saunders showcased his class in front of millions by beating highly ranked McDonagh in an excellent display of boxing skills over 8 rounds. The fight received huge TV ratings and was sandwiched between heavyweight David Price’s 2 round destruction of Matt Skelton and well loved ex-cricketer Freddie Flintoff’s history making debut boxing win.
Recovery is going smoothly so far and the eager light welterweight is desperate to get back into training.
“I’ve only got 1 more week and pins are due out so I’ll be back training. The hand feels good now and I can’t wait to be back.”
The hospital has an excellent record performing this type of operation and the unbeaten prospect is confident of a strong return to the ring.
“Had it done by Mike Hayton of Manchester who is one of the best, if not ‘the’ best so I’ve got full faith in him.”
The majority of Saunders’ fights have been held at welterweight but the star from Sedgefield is keen to get back to his natural fighting weight and in the ring again.
“I think I’ll be back out in May at light welter and I can’t wait.”