By Marco Bratusch
Today was a busy day at the EBU offices.
In the super middleweight division, things are getting complex. Emre Cukur (14-1, 2 KOs) lost his position of co-challenger – and a guaranted purse of 45,000 Euros, which is exactly 50% of the winning bid made by Italy’s BBT Promotion to stage the fight against Giovanni De Carolis (28-9-1, 13 KOs) for tha vacant belt – by losing to Italian-Swiss boxer Davide Faraci (15-0, 7 KOs) last Saturday in Goeppingen, Germany.
In the eyes of some observers, the Faraci warm-up fight was actually a risky one in preparation for the European title, but Cukur’s handlers appeared confident on it. However, Faraci brought the fight and outlanded Cukur basically all night to win a unanimous decision, even knocking down the exhausted local men twice in the final round after briefly hitting the deck himself in round two, which looked as the only round Cukur won clearly. Of course, Faraci could ot replace Cukur as EBU co-challenger as some media outlets supposed, being a light-heavyweight and not a super middleweight, and even their eight-rounder bout was actually above the 168-lbs limit.
Consequentially, Cukur was removed last Monday from the co-challenging position and the EBU followed his rankings to name a new suitable fighter. It happened that #3 Tyron Zeuge (24-1-1, 14 KOs), who is the current European Union (EU) titlist, accepted the position, looming to a possible rubber-match between him and De Carolis four years after their heated rivalry of 2016 for the WBA “regular” title – a majority draw in July let the belt at De Carolis’ waist before a convincing twelfth round stoppage in November passed the torch of the WBA secondary title to the new champion Zeuge. The EBU has already set the purse bid hearing for February 24th, conceding two weeks of private negotiation window. Whether Agon Sports, which manages Zeuge, win the new purse bid, appears likely they intend to put the fight on March 21st in Wuppertal, Germany, replacing Zeuge’s official defense against Dragan Lepei with the more marketable fight against De Carolis for the vacant mayor EBU title. Otherwise, if BBT Promotion comes out again with a strong offer, they would likely stage the fight in Rome, Italy, between April or May.
Today there was also scheduled the purse hearing for European 140-lbs champion Sandor Martin (36-2, 13 KOs) and official challenger Enock Poulsen (11-0, 4 KOs). Denmark’s promoter Bettina Palle won the bid with a quirky offer of 55,555 Euros, while Spain’s Boxing Star offered 20,000 Euros. The bout might be taking place in Copenaghen, Denmark, in late April.
The vacant European flyweight contest between Mohammed Obbadi (21-1, 13 KOs) and former titlist Andrew Selby (13-1, 7 KOs) should take place on April 18th in London, in a MTK boxing event.
The purse bid for the vacant European heavyweight title between Joe Joyce (10-0, 9 KOs) and Filip Hrgovich (10-0, 8 KOs) went desert, and the EBU rescheduled it for February 19, giving the customary one week extension. Boxing fans already know Joe Joyce as a scheduled fight against young puncher Daniel Dubois (14-0, 13 KOs) in front of him set for April 11th at O2 Arena in London, UK, promoted by Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotion, but the EBU do not intend to wait for such fight to decide on their title.
France’s Europrom won the purse bid to stage the vacant European Union (EU) cruiserweight bout between unbeaten fighters Nikodem Jezewski (18-0-1, 9 KOs), from Poland, and Frenchman Dylan Bregeon (11-0-1, 3 KOs). There was only one bid of Euros 12,000.