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Oleksandr Gvozdyk and Arthur Beterbiew to unify light heavyweight titles on October 18

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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WBC light heavyweight champion Oleksandr ‘The Nail’ Gvozdyk 14-0 (14) will clash with IBF counterpart Artur Beterbiev 17-0 (14) will meet in a clash of undefeated punchers at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia on October 18.

“This could very well be the fight of the year,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “These are two evenly matched, undefeated light heavyweight champions. There is nothing better in the sport of boxing.”

Gvozdyk, 32, from the Ukraine won the WBC championship with an 11th round knockout of longtime champion Adonis Stevenson in December last year. In his last outing in March he scored a fifth round TKO over fringe contender Doudou Ngumbu.

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“My first goal was to win a light heavyweight world title. Now, I want to unify the belts, and that mission starts with Artur Beterbiev,” Gvozdyk said.

“This is going to be a spectacular fight, one that the fans will enjoy. The fans asked for this fight, and we will deliver.

“One thing I know is that I will be the unified champion. I have the best trainer, Teddy Atlas, in my corner. This is our third fight together and under his guidance, I will continue to get better.”

Beterbiev claimed the IBF strap with a 12th round knockout of Enrico Koelling in November 2017 and has defended the belt twice since with a knockouts of Callum Johnson last October and Radivoje Kalajdzic in May.

“I wish to thank Top Rank and my opponent, Oleksandr Gvozdyk, for making this unification bout possible and giving the fans around the world what they want,” the 34-year-old Russian said.

“This will be a great fight between the two champions who aspire to become the undisputed light heavyweight world champion. I am looking forward to stepping into the ring on October 18.”

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