Beterbiev on the fast track to IBF world title shot, faces Campillo next
After dominating the amateur ranks during two entire Olympic cycles, Russian prospect Artur Beterbiev is now ready for pro boxing’s elite, even though he has only fought seven times as a professional.
The Groupe Yvon Michel (GYM) jewel will continue his journey April 4 in Quebec City, airing live on CBS and TVA Sports, against former world champion Gabriel Campillo, of Spain.
“The journalists won’t be happy since I did not KO anybody today,” laughed Beterbiev after a public training session today in Quebec City, He demonstrated his skills with his sparring partners, Englishman Bob Ajisafe and Australian Blake Caparello.
“I really think it will be a short night for Campillo,” Caparello said after sparring Beterbiev. “This guy has some incredible brute force. He could even chase and hunt down a strong Sergey Kovalev in the ring,”
Beterbiev (7-0, 7 KOa) will face former WBA light heavyweight world champion Campillo (25-6-1, 11 KOa), a slick 6’2” southpaw who has fought 211 rounds as a professional, in a preliminary bout before the WBC and The Ring light heavyweight world title fight between defending champion Adonis “Superman” Stevenson and Sakio Bika.
Beterbiev-Campillo is for the IBF world second ranking in the light heavyweight division.
“It is a good fight against an excellent opponent; a resistant, experienced guy,” Beterbiev trainer Marc Ramsay analyzed. “Campillo will bring a lot of ring experience to Artur. My boxer continues to improve every day but, in fact, he is already ready for the best.”
“I will put on a good show and fight April 4th,” Beterbiev continued. “When I step in the ring, I don’t have a friend. I want to continue to get better until I face Sergey Kovalev again. And I will beat him again!”
Kevin Bizier vs. Stanislav Salmon
Canadian welterweight Kevin Bizier (23-2, 16 KOs) will have his chance to write history in the old Québec Coliseum, since he will fight the last boxing bout ever produced in the former Nordiques arena. April 4th, he will face former French and WBC Mediterranean welterweight champion Stanislav Salmon (24-3-2, 10 KOs).
In order to realize that dream, the Quebec City’s pride had to refuse an offer to appear in the semi-final bout of the Julio Cesar Chavez Jr and Andrzej Fonfara fight, April 18th in Carson, California.
“Kevin would have received a bigger purse than the one he had for his last fight against Jo Jo Dan, but he wanted to stay on the Quebec card,” promoter Yvon Michel added. “He did a great job in a really close brawl against Dan and Dan will fight in an IBF world welterweight fight, March 28 in England. Everything is still possible for Kevin and we believe in him.”
“To be the one that will close the Colisée is really something,” Bizier commented. “It is also a good preparation fight and I must do great. I would have liked to fight in California, but I will have another opportunity in June. And of course, I would have loved to be in Jo Jo Dan’s shoes to fight in a world championship…but one day, it will be my turn.”
Sébastien Bouchard vs. Denis Farias
Also on the card, Canadian fovorie Sébastien Bouchard (9-1, 3 KOs) will step up to face French tough guy Denis Farias (19-6-2, 1 KOs).
“Sébastien made us proud in his last fight when he stopped the last boxer to defeat icon Stéphane Ouellet, Belgian Cedric Spera,” GYM vice-president Bernard Barré mentioned. “He will be facing a durable fighter, who has only lost one time by K.O.”
Tickets are on sale at the Pepsi Coliseum box office in Quebec, by calling (418) 691-7211 or 1 (800) 900-7469, online at www.billetech.com, at GYM (514) 383-0666 and Champion Boxing Club (514) 376-0980. Ticket prices range from $25 to $250 on the floor.