The one could prove exciting. RingTV.com reports how a WBC cruiserweight elimination bout between former light heavyweight champ Sergey Kovalev and former WBC cruiserweight title challenger Thabiso Mchunu is in the works. The two sides will either come to a deal, or the WBC will, Ring reports, conduct a purse offer on Friday, February 24th.
Kovalev, 35-4-1(29), is getting on in years at age 39, and he has not been seen in a ring since May of last year when “Krusher” won his cruiserweight debut by pounding out a ten round UD over Tervel Pulev. That fight marked Kovalev’s first fight back following his November 2019 stoppage defeat at the hands of Canelo Alvarez. Kovalev did look pretty good in the Pulev fight, and he said at the time how he had rediscovered his dedication (and had put down the bottle) and was again motivated to do things in the sport.
Mchunu of South Africa is 34 years of age, and he is currently 23-6(13). “The Rock” dropped a split decision to reigning WBC cruiserweight champ Ilunga Makabu back in January of 2022, the loss snapping Mchunu’s four-fight win streak. Stopped three times as a pro, lefty Mchunu is a tough, determined, constantly well-conditioned operator who always looks to win. Mchunu still fully believes it is his destiny to become a world champion.
WBC 200 pound boss Makabu is scheduled to defend against Badou Jack in Saudi Arabia, this on the hyped Jake Paul-Tommy Fury card, and that one could prove tough for Junior. Kovalev, if he can get past Mchunu, would make a very interesting and very possibly dangerous challenger for the Makabu-Jack winner.
The cruiserweight division is somewhat interesting right about now, as well as open, with good fighters Jai Opetaia, Lawrence Okolie, Arsen Goulamirian, and Makabu all jostling for poll position. There are some good contenders coming through also, such as the unbeaten Richard Riakporhe. A Kovalev-Mchunu scrap could prove to add more excitement to the weight division. Can Kovalev become world champion again at this advanced stage of his career?