Exclusive: Sergey Kovalev not retiring, next fight in the works – says Kathy Duva
Former light-heavyweight king Sergey Kovalev is preparing for his imminent return and won’t be retiring as rumored, according to promoter Kathy Duva.
Reports from Russia had stated the ‘Krusher’ was seriously considering walking away from the sport on the back of losing twice to current pound for pound king Andre Ward.
Defeats in November and May represent the only reverses on Kovalev’s C.V, and at 34 questions had been raised about the Russian’s ability to come back from what were damaging blows mentally to a previously unbeatable psyche.
Duva believes Kovalev can come back though and told WBN she’s already working on her top fighter’s next ring appearance, along with all at Main Events.
“Sergey Kovalev is not retiring,” Duva exclusively told World Boxing News.
“In fact, we are working on his next fight and we will announce the details as soon as everything is ready.”
Predictions Kovalev could be ready for a run at cruiserweight have been doing the rounds since the summer, although a 25 pound jump is pretty steep considering there have been no previous problems getting down to the 175 pound limit.
Saying that, the big puncher had come in under the light-heavyweight mark for all but his last two world title fights (against Ward) and speculation Kovalev is now tight at the mark could see a welcome addition hit the 200 pound weight class.
One final run at his current category would seem like the more logical scenario if Kovalev can still make 175 without fuss and targetting WBC title holder Adonis Stevenson has to be on Duva’s mind for at least 2018.
The WBC still recognize Kovalev as their Diamond Champion following the 2015 win over Jean Pascal and there should be no problems handing the ex-world champion a lofty ranking in the coming months.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay