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Boxing | International

Eleider Alvarez © Getty Images

Alvarez and Kovalov meet in a return match

WBO light-heavyweight champion Eleider Alvarez defends his belt against Sergey Kovalov, whom he stopped in the seventh round in August last year, in a return match on Saturday night at the Ford Centre at the Star in Frisco, Texas.

The 34-year-old Alvarez (24-0; 12) from Colombia, who fights out of Montreal, Canada, was obliged to face Kovalov again in terms of a rematch clause.

In the first fight, Kovalov was ahead 59-55 on all three judges’ scorecards when he was knocked down on three occasions before referee Dave Fields stopped the fight at 2:45 into the seventh round.

If Alvarez wins again there are options for him to meet either WBC champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk or IBF champion Artur Beterbiev, as both fight under the Top Rank banner.

The WBA champion is Dmitry Bivol.

There are two other title fights on this card, with WBO featherweight champion Mexican, Oscar Valdez, 28, who has a record of 24-0; 19, making the fifth defence of his belts against 34-year-old Carmine Tommasone (19-0; 5) from Italy.

Valdez is returning to action after retaining his belt against an overweight Scott Quigg, who broke his jaw in a closely-fought contest in March last year.

Also on the card is a clash for the vacant IBF lightweight belt between Ghana’s Richard Commey (27-2; 24) and Russia’s Isa Chaniev (13-1; 6).

Another interesting matchup is the fight between Teofimo Lopez (11-0; 9) and former world title challenger Diego Magdaleno (31-2; 13) for NABA, NABF and USBA lightweight titles.


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