Chagaev Ready For Skelton

WBA heavyweight champion Ruslan Chagaev (23-0-1, 17 KOs) says he can't wait to get back in the ring to make his first world title defense. The undefeated Chagaev and challenger Matt Skelton (21-1, 18 KOs) met today at a press conference in Düsseldorf to officially announce their January 19 showdown at the Burg-Wächter Castello..

Since a impressive decision victory over the "Russian Giant" Nicolay Valuev in April 2007, “The White Tyson” was forced to cancel the unification bout of the WBA and WBO belts in a October against Sultan Ibragimov. Chagaev had to withdraw because of a serious illness.

At today's press conference in Gino's Restaurant, the champion Chagaev was in a good mood. "Düsseldorf is a good place for my first title defense," he said. "After my victory against John Ruiz here, the city is a good omen for me. Now I am fit again and the training is going super. It's unfortunate that the title unification with Sultan Ibragimov fell through, but I'll try to work that out again. Matt Skelton should not be underestimated, he is a tough fighter. In comparison to my victory against Valuev, my tactics will be very different with him."

Chagaev's trainer Michael Timm said: "Ruslan has a clean bill of health, has been in full training since late September and has made good progress. "His great victory against Valuev, and the world title have released new energy in him. He's looking forward to a new task."

The 6'3 challenger and Commonwealth-Champion Matt Skelton (21-1-0 (18)) comes to Düsseldorf with only one defeat in his 21 fights and has an impressive KO record. A tough opponent for Chagaev.

Matt Skelton stated: "This is his second time in Germany and it will be a great honor to fight one of the best fighters. "I will beat him," he promised. "I am always in training. When I'm not with my family, the gym is my home."

Skelton's manager Kevin Saunders added: "Matt is in good shape, is super fit. We've studied Ruslan Chagaev via DVD, particularly in the fight against Valuev. He was very strong, but we are stronger and will win."

Additional matchups for the "Universum Champions Night“ at the Burg-Wächter Castello will be announced in the next few weeks.

Tickets for this event will be available from December 13, starting at 17,20 €:

Universum Ticket Hotline: +49 40- 696 559 59
CTS-Eventim Hotline: +49 1805-5 70 000
Düsseldorf-Marketing: +49 1805-644332
and at all known Ticket Shops

Article posted on 13.12.2007

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