BOXING

Three months after backing out, Zulpikar Maimaitiali set to challenge Vijender Singh again

Both the boxers will put their respective titles at stake in a winner-takes-all clash that is likely to be held in the first half of August in Mumbai.

Within three months of a cancellation, WBO Asia Pacific Super middleweight champion Vijender Singh’s proposed double title fight against Oriental Super middleweight champion Zulpikar Maimaitiali is back on track for an August showdown, reported PTI.

According to the undefeated Indian’s promoters IOS Boxing Promotions, talks have taken a positive turn between SECA Worldwide, the Chinese boxer’s promoters.

Both the boxers will put their respective titles at stake in a winner-takes-all clash that is likely to be held in the first half of August in Mumbai.

The promoters of the respective boxers were in talks earlier this year as well, but due to “unavoidable circumstances the bout did not take place”. Maimaitiali had refused to fight without specifying the reasons.

Speaking on a possible bout Edmund Chu, MD, SECA Worldwide said, “Zulpikar is training and preparing to fight Vijender Singh in the biggest showdown of the year. Due to certain unavoidable circumstances, the bout had to be postponed.

“But we have been in talks with IOS Boxing Promotions for over a month now to work out the modalities and are hopeful for the bout to take place soon. Zuli is ready to enter the ring in India and put on a performance against Indian star Vijender Singh in front of his home crowd to become Asian King of Boxing,” he added.

The 22-year-old undefeated Chinese boxer has fought eight bouts with 24 rounds under his belt. Zulpikar has won seven bouts with no less than 5 KO wins and one draw.

The Chinese boxer debuted in the year 2015, and won the WBO Oriental Title last year in July. Vijender has eight wins under his belt with seven of them being KOs and one by Unanimous Decision.

He has played 30 rounds, which puts him a few rounds above his next opponent. Vijender won his maiden title last year in July after defeating Kerry Hope of Australia.

Later, in the month of December, the former Olympic bronze-medallist was challenged by Francis Cheka of Tanzania for his title, which was retained by Vijender.

Commenting on the next fight, IOS Boxing Promotions’ Neerav Tomar said, “We will apply to WBO to sanction the title once we lock the terms with SECA. As soon as our fight is sanctioned we will announce the date and venue of the fight night. We will try to make this fight happen in August 2017.”

The fight night in August would also mark the professional debut of Olympians Akhil Kumar and Jitender Kumar.

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