by James Slater – Usually, if or when a fighter claims he has zero interest in fighting a specific opponent, a number of fans will speak up and claim that there is a serious case of ducking being done on the part of the man who says he gets no motivation or has no urge to fight the guy. However, in the case of WBC heavyweight king Vitali Klitschko, who, it has been revealed by FightNews.com, has filed a complaint with the WBC about his mandated defence against Oleg Maskaev – the overwhelming majority of fans will be totally on Klitschko’s side..
This is not a case of fighter-A being fearful of fighter-B – it is a simple case of common sense being practised by “Dr. Iron Fist.” Klitschko had to defend his WBC crown against mandatory challenger number-one, Juan Carlos Gomez. He is doing so. But to have to also see off mandatory challenger number-two, Oleg Maskaev, 120-days after the Gomez fight, is something that the 37-year-old sees as unfair and just plain wrong.
In his own words, Klitschko feels that, “the fight with Maskaev won’t be interesting for me or for the spectators.” You can say that again! No disrespect to Maskaev – a guy who proved he was a decent enough and gutsy enough heavyweight in his day – but just how the 39-year-old former WBC champ is anywhere near close to a fight for the title is absurd. And Vitali Klitschko knows it, hence his complaint.
According to the FightNews article, Vitali, who has lodged his complaint at The International Court of Arbitration for sport, wants to face a much more formidable and fan-acceptable foe after the Gomez fight (which, naturally, he sees himself winning with no real trouble). Also, justifiably, Klitschko wants to face a challenger who will bring him some big bucks.
It will be interesting to see how the WBC responds to Vitali’s complaint, but it’s fairly safe to say – the most ardent fans of Oleg Maskaev aside – people will agree with what the champ has done. Why should “The Big O” get a crack at his belt when there are a number of other, far more deserving and attractive fighters out there? After all, Maskaev, who was knocked out by the same Sam Peter who looked so poor against Klitschko, has done nothing at all to earn a second world title shot.
Since his 6th-round TKO loss to “The Nigerian Nightmare” back in March of last year, the veteran has fought just once, winning a decision over the 23-11 Robert Hawkins back in September. You tell me, does that make him more worthy of a fight with Klitschko than guys like Chris Arreola, Alexander Dimitrenko or David Haye – all of whom are in the WBC’s current top-ten? No way.
Credit must be given to Vitali Klitschko and to his brother Wladmir – they both seem to want to do the right thing and face the best and most attractive opponents out there. They both care about their fans and also their legacy in the sport. As we all surely agree with Vitali, fighting Oleg Maskaev would help neither.