Finally, as fans may have read, Filip Hrgovic has got himself a meaningful fight; a final eliminator of a meaningful fight. After months of frustration at not being able to get another highly ranked heavyweight (with the IBF) to agree to face him in a final eliminator for the belt Oleksandr Usyk currently holds, the undefeated Hrgovic now has a dance partner. Much credit goes to Tony Yoka, also unbeaten, for agreeing to face the Croatian.
Frenchman Yoka actually defeated Hrgovic back during the 2016 Olympics, with Yoka getting a close decision victory and then going on to win gold at super-heavyweight; Hrgovic taking home a bronze medal. Since then, neither Hrgovic, 14-0(12) nor Yoka, 11-0(9) has faced an elite heavyweight. So who wins the fight when these two hook up? The venue of the fight that is now headed for discussions will prove interesting. At pro level, Yoka has yet to fight outside of his home country of France, while Hrgovic has fought all over, including Mexico, USA, Saudi Arabia and Denmark; with just two of his pro fights being held at home.
As big and as important as Hrgovic-Yoka is, it seems unlikely either fighter will enjoy home country advantage this time. Both guys are tall and athletic and both men clearly have skills. Both men can also punch. Yoka is the taller man at 6’7” to Hrgovic’s 6’6” and both are the same age at 29. This one really is a quite fascinating match-up and the winner will have earned a shot at Usyk (or whoever it is that holds the IBF belt when the time comes).
Credit to both men for agreeing to risk their unbeaten records at a time when it’s more and more rare to see fighters laying it all on the line. This one is pretty much a 50-50 fight and a good case can be made for either guy winning. Hrgovic last fought in December, when he stopped a relatively unknown fighter in Emir Ahmatovic. Yoka last boxed in September of last year, when he stopped an unbeaten Petar Milas.
Roll on Hrgovic Vs. Yoka.