The night of May 4th was already going to be a big, big night of boxing, what with world middleweight king Canelo Alvarez set to defend against Danny Jacobs in what many are saying is Canelo’s toughest fight this side of a third war with Gennady Golovkin – and now fans will see two more world title fights that night. As per a news story from RingTV.com, IBF light-heavyweight champ Artur Beterbiev will defend against little-known Swedish contender Sven Fornling in California, with Jerwin Ancajas to defend his 115 pound belt against Ryuichi Funai also set for the card. The two fights will go out on ESPN.
Beterbiev, for some the hardest-hitting 175 pounder on the scene today, if not the best light-heavyweight, period, wants bigger fights – such as a unification with countryman Sergey Kovalev – but for now he has Fornling, 15-1(7) to deal with. Beterbiev is a significant favourite to win in May.
Now a Top Rank fighter (though the deal has not yet been officially announced) Beterbiev is still just 13-0(13) and he has seen a fight with Joe Smith Jr. fall through twice. At age 34, Beterbiev must get moving if he’s to get the big, big fights and win them. Fornling, who will be having his first fight outside of Europe, is not a big puncher and not too many fans have seen the 30 year old in action.
Fornling is coming off a good win, a decision victory over Karo Murat, but it’s tough to make much of a case for him scoring the big upset and beating Beterbiev. In fact, it could be a short night in this, Fornling’s first shot at a world title. Beterbiev has never been taken the full distance as a pro and this seems unlikely to change here. Still, with Ancajas also defending his world title, and with the big one between Canelo and “The Miracle Man” going down the same night, fight fans should be in store for some terrific action on May 4th.