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Home » Janibek vs Mikhailovich, Nakatani vs Astrolabio set for July

Janibek vs Mikhailovich, Nakatani vs Astrolabio set for July

Kazakhstan’s middleweight king is gearing up to defend his unified crown against an unbeaten contender seeking to claim his throne.

Janibek “Qazaq Style” Alimkhanuly will put his WBO and IBF world titles on the line against New Zealand’s Andrei Mikhailovich on Saturday, July 13, at Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas.

In the 10-round lightweight co-feature, Raymond Muratalla will face former world champion Tevin Farmer.

Janibek-Mikhailovich and Muratalla-Farmer top a loaded bill that will stream live and exclusively in the U.S. on ESPN+ and Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland.

Promoted by Top Rank, in association with No Limit Boxing, tickets go on sale Tuesday, June 4 at 12 p.m. PT and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com.

“Janibek is the best middleweight in the world and willing to fight anyone in that division. Mikhailovich is a hungry, undefeated contender, and he is coming from New Zealand to shake up the title picture,” said Top Rank Chairman Bob Arum. “Muratalla can compete with any lightweight in the world, and I expect Tevin Farmer to give him a stiff test. Tevin is a decorated former champion who understands that a win puts him right back in the title picture.”

Janibek (15-0, 10 KOs), a 2016 Olympian, quickly rose the ranks from prospect to contender ranks. In 2021, he registered knockout wins over former belt-holders Rob Brant and Hassan N’Dam before securing the WBO Interim middleweight world title with a second-round demolition of Danny Dignum in May 2022. He was elevated to full champion after Demetrius Andrade vacated the title and made his first defense with a unanimous points win versus Denzel Bentley that November. In May 2023, he blasted out Canadian contender Steven Butler in two rounds and became a unified champion that October by vanquishing IBF king Vincenzo Gualtieri via sixth-round TKO.

“I look forward to defending my world titles, and I must give Andrei Mikhailovich a lot of credit. The other world middleweight champions refused the challenge, and he stepped up to the plate,” Janibek said. “On July 13 in Las Vegas, I will show the world ‘Qazaq Style’ again. The road to undisputed continues, and Mikhailovich is in my way.”

Mikhailovich (21-0, 13 KOs) was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and was raised in New Zealand. He began boxing at 15 and turned pro five years later in April 2018. Mikhailovich captured his first regional strap with a third-round TKO versus Ernesto España in June 2022 and decisioned Francis Waitai across eight rounds the following month. He registered his most impressive victory in April 2023 by rising off the canvas in the opening stanza to stop then-unbeaten Edisson Saltarin in five. He returned one year later to score a first-round TKO win over Les Sherrington.

Mikhailovich said, “At the end of the day, Janibek is just another guy, another test on my way to greatness. Others will say this is a big deal, but to me, this is fate. I was born for this. Since day one, I have planned to dominate, take over, and control my destiny. I train relentlessly, eat right, and always maintain a warrior’s mindset, so I don’t need any extra motivation because the two belts are on the line.”

Muratalla (20-0, 16 KOs) is a 27-year-old contender inching towards a world title opportunity. He went 3-0 with three knockouts in 2023. In March, he overcame a first-round knockdown to finish Humberto Galindo with a body shot in the ninth, opened the Devin Haney-Vasiliy Lomachenko pay-per-view broadcast that May by pulverizing Jeremia Nakathila in two, and culminated his year in November by destroying then-unbeaten Mexican puncher Diego Torres in eight. Muratalla heads into this contest following a 10-round points verdict over Xolisani Ndongeni in March.

“I’m ready for the lightweight champions, but I can’t take Tevin Farmer lightly. He is a former world champion who wants another shot,” Muratalla said. “I have a great training team with Robert Garcia and all the fighters at Robert Garcia Boxing Academy, and they push me to get better every fight. On July 13, you will see the best version of Raymond Muratalla.”

Farmer (33-5-1, 8 KOs) overcame early-career setbacks before going on an 18-fight win streak, culminating in a showdown against Kenichi Ogawa for the IBF junior lightweight title in December 2017. Ogawa’s controversial points win was overturned to a No Contest after he tested positive for a banned substance. Farmer then had his second title shot and triumphed over Billy Dib to win the vacant IBF strap the following August. The 33-year-old made four defenses before losing the belt to Joseph Diaz Jr. in January 2020. He has since gone 3-0 with two knockouts, including a first-round stoppage over Alan Luques Castillo in March.

Farmer said, “I’m finally in a healthy state. It’s time to show my level. The fans haven’t seen me at my best yet. I’m happy they’ll finally witness greatness from me.”

In scheduled undercard action:

Argentinian puncher Gustavo Lemos (29-1, 19 KOs) will make his Top Rank debut in a 10-round battle. Lemos made his U.S. debut in April by giving unbeaten contender Richardson Hitchins all he could handle in an IBF junior welterweight world title eliminator, nearly stopping him in the eighth before losing a controversial points verdict.

Junior lightweights William Foster III (17-1, 11 KOs) and Eridson Garcia (18-1, 12 KOs) will collide in a 10-rounder. Foster rebounded from his loss to Henry Lebron last November with a first-round TKO against Lucas Mignoni in March. Garcia also secured a first-round TKO that month, defeating Jose Santos Gonzalez.

Former world title challenger Ruben “Drac” Villa (22-1, 7 KOs) will fight in a 10-rounder at featherweight versus Sulaiman Segawa (16-4-1, 6 KOs). Villa began his 2024 campaign by besting Christian Cruz via decision in April.

Featherweight prospect Jonathan Lopez (15-0, 11 KOs) looks to extend his knockout streak to three in an eight-rounder. Lopez, who trains with Eddy Reynoso, began his 2024 campaign earlier this month by stopping Edgar Ortega on the undercard of the Emanuel Navarrete-Denys Berinchyk main event.

Bay Area-born junior welterweight prospect Charlie Sheehy (9-0, 5 KOs) will see action in an eight-rounder against Ricardo Quiroz (13-4, 7 KOs). Sheehy returns after February’s shutout decision over Abdel Sauceda.


Junto Nakatani vs Vincent Astrolabio 

WBC bantamweight world champion, three-weight king, and rising pound-for-pound superstar Junto Nakatani will defend his strap against Filipino contender Vincent Astrolabio on Saturday, July 20, at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo.

Nakatani-Astrolabio tops a world title tripleheader that also includes WBO junior bantamweight world champion Kosei Tanaka against Jonathan “Titan” Rodriguez and the vacant WBO flyweight world title showdown between Riku Kano and Los Angeles native Anthony Olascuaga.

Additionally, the card features former kickboxing world champion Tenshin Nasukawa, who will take on Jonathan “Torres” Rodriguez in a 10-round bantamweight special feature.

The three world title fights and Nasukawa-Rodriguez will stream live and exclusively on ESPN+ in the early morning hours in the U.S.