MOSCOW, July 05. /ITAR-TASS/. Former undisputed world champions Lennox Lewis and Evander Holyfield will go to Grozny, capital of Chechnya, to attend a fight between Fres Oquendo of the United States and Ruslan Chagayev of Uzbekistan for the regular WBA (World Boxing Association) Title belt.
Oquendo has already arrived in Grozny and is ready to fight even though some said earlier he might cancel the match. The athlete said he had decided to come later than scheduled because of the birth of his son.
The boxer might have cancelled the fight because of disagreements between the promoters. Shennon Briggs of the United States and Alexander Petkovic of Bosnia were named among possible replacements.
But last night it was confirmed that Oquendo had left for Grozny and would appear in the boxing ring at the Akhmat Arena on July 6.
“Unfortunately, Mike Tyson can’t come because of technical problems. He was sure he had a valid visa, but it had expired. Lennox Lewis, Evander Holyfield and David Hay, who has got the visa after all, are now in Russia. Mark Dacascos and, as far as I know, Jean-Claude Van Damme will also come. All of them are now in Moscow and will go to Grozny by a private flight tomorrow. At any rate, we expect a large number of guests. Andrei Ryabinsky, head of the World of Boxing company, who helped us with Oquendo, will also be there,” Timur Dugazayev, who is Chagayev’s manager, said.
The regular WBA Title belt became vacant last autumn after Alexander Povetkin of Russia suffered a defeat from Ukrainian boxer Vladimir Klitschko, who retained his world super-champion title. The WBA said the belt would be contested by Number 3 Chagayev and Number 4 Oquendo.
Chagayev has won 32 fights (20 by knockout) and lost two; Oquendo won 37 fights (24 by knowckout) and lost seven.