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Mairis Briedis and Yuniel Dorticos ready to battle it out for cruiserweight supremacy on Saturday

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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The long-awaited cruiserweight final of the World Boxing Super Series takes place this weekend when Mairis Briedis 26-1 (19) meets Yuniel Dorticos 24-1 (22) at the Plazamedia Broadcasting Center in Munich, Germany on Saturday night.

The fight will be for The Ring title at 200-pounds.

Latvian Briedis, 35, defeated Noel Gevor by unanimous decision in the quarterfinals of the WBSS in November 2018 and stopped Krzysztof Glowacki in three in the semi-finals in June last year.

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The final of the tournament has been repeatedly pushed back with the global coronavirus pandemic impacting the fight’s rescheduling.

“I am happy we are fighting in such a big boxing country as Germany,” said Briedis. “I trust my team, and I believe they and I have done a fantastic job preparing for this fight. So for Saturday, we should be ready. I can’t wait!

“Hopefully we can bring the fans a classic on Saturday night, a fight that people will remember and talk about for a long time.”

The 34-year-old Dorticos, originally from Cuba but fighting out of Miami, bested Mateusz Masternak on points in the quarterfinals of the WBSS in October 2018 and knocked out Andrew Tabiti in 10 in the semi-finals in June last year.

IBF cruiserweight champion Dorticos said that he will be fighting in the spirit of Muhammad Ali who fought in Munich in 1976.

“I am fighting on behalf of Muhammad Ali’s legacy, we have a special connection to him in our team,” Dorticos said.

“Forty-four years ago Muhammad Ali fought Richard Dunn here in Munich and he produced the last KO win of his career, and I am here to show why I am called ‘The KO Doctor’ and take home the Ali trophy, and become greatness just like the greatest of all times.

“Everybody knows that I come to give it my all, that’s what fighters do, that’s what champions do. To all my fans in Miami and worldwide I give you my love and support, and on Saturday night I will perform at the highest level possible.”

The cruiserweight final will close off the second season of the WBSS that also saw Naoya Inoue emerge victorious in the bantamweight final against Nonito Donaire and Josh Taylor come out on top against Regis Prograis in the junior welterweight final.

“Boxing is back, big-time boxing is back. Live from the Plazamedia Studios this Saturday night in Munich it’s the final of the World Boxing Super Series, the cruiserweight division, the best versus the best,” promoter Kalle Sauerland said.

“We have seen it this season already with Inoue vs Donaire, Prograis vs Taylor, the number ones against the number twos, and on Saturday night we have an absolute barnstormer!”

The undercard will feature showcases fights for three undefeated German rising stars.

Leon Bunn 15-0 (8) challenges Finland’s Timo Laine 27-13 (11) across eight rounds, IBF European middleweight champion Denis Radovan 13-0-1 (6) defends his title against tough Polish middleweight Robert Talarek 24-13-3 (16) and ‘Die Zukunft’ Sophie Alisch 5-0 (1) faces Edina Kiss 15-13 (9).

The final will be shown live on DAZN in the US and Canada, Sky Sports in the UK and Bildplus in Germany.

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