Glynn Evans surfs the net to extract titbits on the seriously chiselled Russian who has designs on toppling our WBO lightweight king at Manchester Arena on April 8th.
Petrov was born in Ryazan, an oil refining city and electronics hub, 120 miles south-east of Moscow in March 1983. He will be 34 this year. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the area was terrorised by the infamous OPG mafia gang and blighted by racketeering and contract killings.
At the age of 12, the Petrov family moved to Madrid, Spain for commercial reasons. Petr is fluent in Russian and Spanish and speaks some English.
After nominal amateur experience, Petr turned professional in November 2000. He was just 17 at the time. His initial 19 gigs took place on Spanish territories (one in Tenerife).
A 5ft 6in orthodox fighter with a 70in reach (southpaw Flanagan is three and a half inches taller), Petrov is nicknamed ‘El Zar’ (The Tsar).
In his ninth outing, aged 20, Petrov conceded his unbeaten tag, suffering a six round split decision to Columbia’s Ubadel Soto in Madrid.
However, over the ensuing 13 ½ years, he has lost just three times, all to world champions, each time in the opponent’s yard.
In October 2007, Germany’s future WBC super-feather boss Vitali Tajbert unanimously outpointed Petrov over eight in Halle. In September 2011, monster hitting Argie Marcos Maidana put him out for the full count in a WBA title challenge up at light-welter, in Buenos Aires. Nineteen months later, over in Montenegro, local hero Dejan Zlaticanin (the future WBC lightweight king) outpointed him on all cards over 12.
Post Zlaticanin, Petrov has been aligned with Artie Pellulo’s Philadelphia-based Banner Promotions. He resides in southern California with his wife Carolina and is trained and managed by Danny Zamora in Santa Fe Springs. Jerry Arias helps out with strength and conditioning duties while Petr’s brother coaches him whenever he is back in Spain.
His last six gigs (all wins, four early) have all taken place on US soil against opposition with combined stats of 135 wins, 24 losses, five draws. In May 2014, the Russian native captured the ESPN Friday Night Fights prestigious Boxcino lightweight title. Additionally, he has hovered up WBO and WBA regional titles plus the NABF crown at 135lbs.
Having outpointed Mexico’s former WBC Super-Feather boss Gamaliel Diaz over 10 the previous April, Petrov was scheduled to box in the UK in October 2015. However, his WBO eliminator with Cromer’s Liam Walsh was pulled after the unbeaten Norfolk switch hitter withdrew with a hand injury.
Potent Petr secured his shot at the ‘Turbo’ by forcing Golden Boy’s highly touted Michael Perez (just one loss in 27) to retire on his stool after six rounds of an eliminator in Indio, California last September. The Robert Garcia trained starlet from New Jersey was dumped and sliced in round two prior to raising the white flag.
Mandatory contender with both the WBA and WBO, the Russian hard case presently sports a 38-4-2 slate with exactly half of his victims failing to pass the finish post.
Terry Flanagan vs. Petr Petrov tops an unmissable evening of action at the Manchester Arena on April 8; Super-Welterweight rivals Liam Smith and Liam Williams clash in one of the most anticipated domestic dust-ups in recent times; Slick South African Zolani Tete faces Arthur Villanueva in a final eliminator for the WBO World Bantamweight strap; double Olympic Gold Medallist and women’s boxing icon Nicola Adams OBE fights for the first time as a professional and former Team GB Heavyweight monster Daniel Dubois makes his highly-anticipated professional debut along with a talent packed undercard.
Tickets for April 8 priced £50, £70, £100, £150, £200, £300 and VIP £500 are available from eventim at www.eventim.co.uk and 0844 249 1000 and the Manchester Arena at www.manchester-arena.com and 0844 847 8000.
Philadelphia, PA / Ontario, California (February 10, 2017)–TONIGHT at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, California, two highly regarded prospects will be in action as undefeated featherweight Ruben Villa and Michael Dutchover will make their 1st appearances in 2017.
Ruben Villa 128 lbs – Francisco Camacho 128 lbs
Villa (3-0, 2 KO’s) of Salinas, California will take on 9 fight veteran Francsico Camacho, while Dutchover (2-0, 2 KO’s) of Santa Fe Springs, California will battle Jose Mora.
Villa and Dutchover are promoted by Banner Promotions and Thompson Boxing.
Both fights are scheduled for 4 rounds.
“Everything is going well. I had a great training camp. I sparred with (world title challenger) Oscar Escandon and Victor Pasillas,” said Villa.
“I don’t know a lot about my opponent. He has lost to some good prospects, but I let my trainer do the research. I just train and fight.”
Being that it is Villa’s 1st full year as fighter, Villa has goals, both in this fight and throughout 2017.
“Hopefully I can get some rounds in on Friday. That will give me more ring experience. I am looking for 5 or 6 fights this year, and just want to stay active. I think I will fight 1 or 2 more 4-round fights and then it will be onto 6-round fights. I just want to be able to show what I can do. It’s great to get those 1st round knockouts, but it doesn’t show all my skills. I want to show the fans all that I can do.”
Michael Dutchover 129.1 lbs – Jose Mora 124.8 lbs
Dutchover, who turned professional on October 21st, is ready to start the year off in impressive fashion.
“Training has been great. I feel strong and confident,”said the 19 year-old Dutchover.
“I don’t know much about him other than he has had a few fights, but it should be a good test for me.”
Like Villa, look for Dutchover to stay active in 2017.
“This is my first fight in 2017, and I am ready to start the year off with a bang. I am just going to work my game plan and come out victorious. It’s going to be a very busy year. I been working hard with my trainer Danny Zamaora, I think I will fight 5 or 6 times this year. But first things first, and that is to start off the year off in a good fashion on Friday, and keep it going.”
“We are looking forward to Ruben and Michael getting started in 2017,” said Artie Pelullo, president of Banner Promotions. “This will be a good year for them as the fans will really get to know them. We plan to keep them very busy. We feel by this time next year, they will be on everybody’s prospect lists as stars of the future.”
“Both Ruben and Michael are anxious to start 2017 with compelling wins,” said Ken Thompson, president of Thompson Boxing Promotions. “We plan on keeping them busy this year. The plan is to elevate their level of competition as the year goes on. Ruben and Michael are immensely talented prospects with world championship potential. It’s only a matter of time before they become household names.”
Photos By Carlos Baeza / Thompson Boxing
Former amateur foes ‘Golden’ Jack Culcay (22-1, 11 KOs) and Demetrius ‘Boo Boo’ Andrade (23-0, 16 KOs) will meet for the WBA World Super Welterweight Championship on March 11 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Halle in Ludwigshafen, Germany.
Both men are former Amateur World Champions who have gone on to claim World honours as professionals. Culcay, who claimed the WBA strap with a unanimous pints decision over Maurice Weber on May 9, 2015, will be making a third defence of his title against Andrade, a former WBO World Champion.
At a press conference yesterday in Ludwigshafen, Culcay and Andrade, who was appearing via video link, exchanged words for this first time prior to their super welterweight showdown with most of the talk surrounding their 2007 bout at the Amateur World Championships in Chicago.
‘’Last time we fought at the Amateur World Championships in Chicago the judges clearly favoured the home fighter,’’ said Culcay. ‘’They gave him point after point when in reality it was a really close fight for the first two rounds. He beat me and won the gold that year, but now it’s my time for revenge. We will be fighting on a level playing ground in Germany and I will prove I am one of the best boxers at 154 lbs.’’
“Hey Jack, remember 2007,’’ said Andrade. ‘’Back then we were just two young guys, greenhorns without much power, but I already made easy work of you. This time we’re grown men with punches that can hurt badly. You better get ready to be dominated again. Boo Boo is going to make your World title disappear!’’
‘’This is one of the most hotly anticipated fights to take place on German soil for many years,’’ said promoter Kalle Sauerland. ‘’It is an exciting match up. Both men have reached the pinnacle in amateur boxing and have won World Championships as professionals. No doubt, their amateur history will add extra spice to the battle. March 11 is judgment day, and we will see if it is repeat or revenge?’’
Tickets for the WBA World Super Welterweight Championship clash between Jack Culcay and Demetrius Andrade are available online via www.eventim.de or by calling the ticket hotline on 01806-570044.
Philadelphia, PA / Johannesburg, South Africa (February 8, 2017)–This past Saturday night , World ranked cruiserweight Kevin Lerena stopped Vikapita Meroro in the 5th round of their scheduled 10-round bout at The Emperors Palace in Gauteng, South Africa.
Lerena, who is ranked number-5 by the WBO,number-11 by the WBC, and number-13 by the WBA dropped Meroro in the 1st round and won each round until Meroro surprisingly quit in round five.
The win was Lerena’s 6th consecutive victory.
The stoppage came as a shock, which led promoter Rodney Berman to withhold Meroro’s purse.
“He quit, plain and simple,” raged Berman, who insisted Meroro was in no imminent danger.
“We have an obligation to the public to produce good fights. The public pay good money, Emperors Palace pays good money and SuperSport pays good money. I can’t overlook that,” said Berman.
“As I didn’t really get going, I’d give myself six out of 10. The minute I dropped him in the first round, he went into defensive mode,” said Lerena. “When a guy comes to fight, I show my true ability. It frustrates me when they don’t . . . I like fighting. We did expect more, but what can you do?”
“I was disappointed. No, I was angry. I wanted to beat him up. I started going to the body from round four. I was planning and building towards a conclusive finish. I’d rather get knocked out than quit, like Meroro did.”
“I’m lucky, I have a big following. The fans paid a lot of money to watch me and many tuned in to television, but they never got a full show because Meroro quit. People understand, I’m coming to wreck my opponents. I’m not there for the pay day. I come to win.”
“I trained hard. Now I’m just focused on what’s next. I’m hoping for a fight date in America, the sooner the better. I want a good fight and a good opponent. I love hard fights; I never want to have easy fights. I just want to win and look good doing so.”
“Kevin got the win, and he dominated the fight,” said Matt Rowland, Vice President of Banner Promotions.
“He continues to win and move up the rankings, and our partner Rodney Berman and us will discuss the next move for Kevin. We can see him fighting for a world title in the not too distant future.”
Philadelphia, PA / Johannesburg, South Africa (February , 2017)–This past Friday night in Durban, South Africa, WBA number-3 ranked, WBC number-13 ranked, and WBO number-15 ranked lightweight contender Xolisani Ndongeni (22-0, 11 Ko’s) was named South African Fighter of the Year.
The ceremony took place in front of former South African world champions, and dignitaries such as Minister of Sport Fikile Mbalula.
The 26 year-old Ndongeni won two big fights in 2016. His year started out on April 22nd with a 1st round stoppage over Emilio Norfat. He followed that up with a 10-round unanimous decision over Juan Garcia Mendez on November 4th in Corona, California.
The bout was Ndongeni’s American debut.
“I’m very proud to have won,” said Ndongeni. “I have a lot of faith in my team of Rodney Berman of Golden Gloves, Banner Promotions and [trainer] Colin Nathan. The sky is the limit. I’m looking forward to fighting in the US very soon and showing them all what I’m capable of.”
“I was delighted for ‘Nomeva’ [Ndongeni], who made his US debut last year and won in style against a difficult opponent,” said Golden Gloves CEO, Rodney Berman. “I have high hopes from him and this endorsement merely underlines his international potential. He’s highly rated and will surely get his big chance before long.”
Said Banner Promotions President, Arthur Pelullo, “I want to congratulate Xolisani for winning this great award. He is a terrific fighter, and was very impressive in his American debut. 2017 will be a big year for him and we look to get him in some big fights.”
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (December 29, 2016) World ranked cruiserweight KEVIN “THE KO KID” LERENA, (16-1-0, 8 KO’s) kicks off his 2017 campaign towards a world title in style on Saturday, February 4 with his triumphant return to South Africa’s premier boxing venue, Emperors Palace against VIKAPITA “BEAST MASTER” MERORO, (28-5-0, 14 KO’s) of Windhoek, Namibia.
Presented by Rodney Berman’s Golden Gloves of South Africa, advance tickets for THUNDER AND LIGHTNING, may be purchased by calling 078-457-3030.
Sporting movie-star looks, the 24-year-old Lerena will be making his fourth straight appearance at Emperors Palace having thrilled the boxing crowd in his three victories in 2016.
“I can’t wait for the New Year, the path to a world title is in front of me, my promoter Rodney Berman is getting me the right fights and my world rankings will support a title shot in the future,” said Lerena following a sparring session under the watchful eye of trainer Peter Smith.
Said Berman, “Kevin has stardom written all over him, we’ve got big plans in 2017 for him. Putting him in the right fights, securing his position in the world rankings of the sanctioning bodies and working with Banner Promotions in the US to secure him a major stateside fight in the coming year.”
“We are excited to be co-promoting Kevin with Rodney Berman and Golden Gloves. Rodney has only brought us the cream of the crop, “said Artie Pelullo, President and CEO of Banner Promotions. “Kevin is a quality fighter, who has shown he has championship ability. We look forward to him getting closer to a world title opportunity with a big win on February 4.”
“I’m as excited about Kevin’s future as I’ve ever been of all the fighters I’ve worked with, cruiserweight is a very exciting division in boxing currently.”
Lerena is currently world ranked #5 by the World Boxing Organization and #11 by the World Boxing Council.
Most recently, Lerena, performing brilliantly from start to finish, winning a hard-fought ten round decision over the undefeated Micki Nielsen on October 22, 2016, earning the critically lauded Super 4 Tournament Championship.
In the first round of the Super 4 Tournament Championship, Lerena won a ten round unanimous decision over Roberto Bolonti on June 11, 2016.
Kicking off his 2016 campaign on April 24, 2016, the southpaw won the South African Cruiserweight Title with a tenth round knockout of Johnny Muller. The stoppage avenged a ten round decision loss in 2014 to Muller.
Philadelphia, Penn./Rochester, New York (Dec. 19, 2016) -Willie Monroe, Jr. is ready for another major opportunity after a year where he defeated two world title challengers.
The native of Rochester, New York scored unanimous decision victories over John Thompson and Gabriel Rosado in 2016 to put himself in position to be mentioned for an early-2017 bout with Canelo Alvarez or a world title opportunity with WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders. Monroe is also looking for showdowns with contenders David Lemieux and Curtis Stevens.
The recent win over Rosado netted Monroe the WBO Inter-Continental Middleweight title.
Sporting a record of 21-2 with 6 knockouts has Monroe ranked number-5 by the WBA, number-8 by the WBO and number-13 by the WBC.
This week, Monroe became a member of #TeamEverlast as a endorser for the legendary Everlast brand.
“I am very thankful to be a part of #TeamEverlast. Joining this elite group of guys is a testament to my hard work and determination being recognized. I look forward to growing with Everlast in the coming years.”
“2017 is going to be an exciting year,” said Monroe. “I saw what it is like to be on that stage in 2015 when I faced Golovkin for the world title. This year I beat 2 world title challengers decisively, and now I am looking to keep that momentum and have a big year. You will see a lot more fight out of Willie Monroe. I have already proved myself as a boxer, and this year I will have to show other elements out of Willie Monroe.”
“It was a big stage to fight Golovkin, but I fought on a bigger stage on the Canelo undercard in front of 50,000 people, and I proved that I am one of the top guys in the division. I will prove that once again in 2017.”
“The most important thing for me is activity in 2017. There are fights to be made; Saunders, Stevens, Lemieux. I would fight all of those guys one after another. My team and I ended 2016 with fireworks; lets continue that show in 2017.”
“Willie put together an amazing 2016 in the final 6 months of the year. I am glad we got the deal with Everlast finalized. This serves as excellent momentum going into 2017,” said Adrian Clark (Strategic Partner to Willie Monroe, Jr.)
“Willie had an outstanding year,” said Banner Promotions President, Artie Pelullo. “He showed his resiliency by coming back from the Golovkin fight. Great fighters take losses and come back stronger, and that is what Willie showed. He will be in a significant bout in early 2017, and he will prove again that he is one of the top middleweights in the world.”