Vladimir Hryunov, manager of the mandatory challenger for IBF heavyweight Alexander Povetkin, spoke with Russian reporter Alexander Pavlov about the upcoming fight against WBO/IBF/IBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko on September 11 in Frankfurt, Germany.
Hryunov was not pleased with Klitschko’s actions at the recent press conference in Frankfurt. Povetkin suffered a sinus infection and was unable to fly to Germany for the conference. Klitschko took a life-like cardboard image of Povetkin and painted black eyes with a marker and made several jokes for the crowd. Povetkin is training in America with Teddy Atlas. He said the contracts have yet to be signed, but he was very pleased that Klitschko agreed to take part in the WADA doping tests.
“We didn’t want to Sasha to go to this press conference. He went for four weeks to America, and he has two weeks left to complete his training there. Right now the United States is hot like Russia, and Alexander’s room is very strongly air conditioned. As a result of the temperature difference, Sasha emerged with inflammation of his nasal sinuses. The doctor had not recommended for him to go on such a long journey, and we notified the IBF and provided full medical records,” Hryunov said.
“Our task – I, as a manager, and Sauerland Event, as the promoter, – is to protect the interests of our boxers. A trans-Atlantic flight, especially with health problems – is a serious matter, if only because of jet lag. Moreover, the contract for the bout has not yet been signed. On the other hand, I am very grateful to Wladimir Klitschko for the fact that at the press conference, he agreed to undergo doping test under the rules of WADA [World Anti Doping Agency]. I never doubted that he was an honest man, and I am glad that he confirmed it.”
Hryunov believes Klitschko’s manager Bernd Boente was behind his fighter’s antics at the press conference with Povetkin’s cardboard image.
“This type of affectation is the style of Klitschko’s manager, Bernd. I have no doubt that this is his handiwork, like the Haye shirts with the detached heads of Klitschko. Boente is a brilliant public relations manager, working for a certain audience that is willing and able to sell tickets. But I would like to draw attention to the team of Klitschko on the social responsibility of his actions – you do set an example for children,” Hryunov said.
“It is better to sort things out, as an athlete , with an athlete – in the ring and not grimacing on a video on the internet. Last week during Alekseev-Lebedev, we saw how those things end.”