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Cleverly may be the last British world champion standing by June

Carl Froch Nathan Cleverly Ricky BurnsBy Scott Gilfoid: In looking at some of the scheduled fights coming up for the British World champions in early 2013, I think there’s a great chance that WBO light heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly will be the last British World champion standing by June of this year. That’s unfortunate because the Brits had a good run going there for a little while but it looks like it’s about to end. Here’s the problem.

WBO lightweight champion Ricky Burns, who comes from Scotland, will be fighting IBF lightweight champ Miguel Vazquez on March 16th in London, England, and I don’t see this fight going well at all for Burns, I really don’t. I see Vazquez beating Burns and walking out of the arena with his WBO strap over his shoulder.

Besides that fight, IBF super middleweight champion Carl Froch has a dangerous rematch against WBA champion Mikkel Kessler on May 25th, and I think that’s going to be a really tough fight for Froch to try and win. I sat down and reviewed their April 2010 fight recently, and I it painfully obvious after two viewings that Kessler got the better of Froch all night long in virtually every exchange.

Kessler, with his better power, faster hands and better punching form, was beating Froch to the punch and finishing all the exchanges with hard shots. Froch would start the exchanges but Kessler would get the better of Froch and the exchanges with hard hooks. I don’t see anything changing on that end. If anything, I see things getting worse for Froch because Kessler seems to have developed his man strength at 33, and he’s really punching hard now, a lot harder than he was back in 2010. Kessler had Froch staggered in their fight, and it’s scary to think what an even more powerful Kessler will do to Froch this time around.

It’s weird to imagine Cleverly being the last of the British champions because I don’t really rate him as being a good champion. However, he’s got the easiest fight of the three British world champions in early 2013 with his March 16th fight against Robin Krasniqi. I don’t think it’s going to be an easy fight for Cleverly, but I do believe he’ll win in the end. Cleverly has the better work rate compared to Krasniqi and I think that’s going to be the difference in this fight.

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