Boxing

Alexander Povetkin To Box One Final Tune-Up Before September Date With Wladimir Klitschko

by James Slater - Unbeaten 29-year-old Russian heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin is scheduled, apparently, to take one final bout before his mandated crack at IBF and WBO ruler Wladmir Klitschko. Povetkin is due to face "Dr. Steel Hammer" no later than September, and it looks like he will box again on April 4th in Germany. According to a recent news article on The Boston Herald.com, Povetkin may wind up facing fellow upcoming big man Jason Estrada of Providence, Rhode Island..

This would be an extremely interesting "tune-up" for Povetkin, and a very dangerous one at that. Both men are former Olympians - with Povetkin capturing a gold medal at super-heavyweight in 2004, and Estrada coming home empty handed after just one win - and both guys have considerable talent. Surely it would make more sense for the two to meet only after one of them has captured a major belt? What if Estrada were to upset Povetkin (a very real possibility), would the Russian star still go ahead with his shot at Klitschko?

A Povetkin-Estrada match-up is far from set in stone, but according to the Boston Herald article the fight is under negotiation as we speak. And according to BoxRec.com, Povetkin is due to fight on April 4th in Germany. Could it be against his fellow Olympian? It would be a risky fight for the Russian contender, while the fight would offer Estrada a huge opportunity to break into the world's top-ten. There is no question who would stand to gain more from this prospective bout - Mr. "Big-Six" himself.

Though the 28-year-old - who, in his only pro loss, was out-pointed (while out of shape) by Travis Walker- was a major letdown at the Athens Olympics, Estrada has seemingly been making more of an effort to keep his weight down as of late. The critics made no bones about the fact that it was a lack of desire and a willingness to carry excess poundage that led to Jason's flop at the 2004 games, but it cannot be denied that the man with the 15-1(3) record has talent. Not a puncher, Estrada has genuine gifts, such as exceptionally quick hands, a good left jab and a fine boxing brain.

Now down to the 240-pound mark (in truth Jason could get lower), the 28-year-old says he is ready to make his move into the big time. A win over Povetkin would be an excellent start. Both men have similar records at 16 pro bouts each (though Povetkin has never lost) and both are almost the same age. The match-up would be a very good one, and a most intriguing one. But for Povetkin to take such a risk before his guaranteed shot at Klitschko? Would that make sense?

Of course, Povetkin has beaten a fast-handed, relatively light-hitting heavyweight before - when he out-pointed the talented Eddie Chambers. As such, the 29-year-old would feel he would do the same again against Estrada. The difference is, Povetkin had to take the fight with "Fast" Eddie to earn the IBF #1 position he now holds. Would he really be willing to take a fight with Estrada with no such reward on offer?

I'll bet Estrada is hoping he will.

Article posted on 19.01.2009



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