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Indongo to replace injured Viktor Postol for Prograis fight on March.9


By Jim Dower: Viktor Postol suffered a fractured thumb in training and he won’t be facing Regis Prograis for the interim WBC light welterweight title on March 9 on Showtime. Former IBF 140 lb. champion Julius Indongo (22-1, 11 KOs) will replace Postol (29-1, 12 KOs) to be the one that faces #2 WBC Prograis (20-0, 12 KOs) on the 9th of March on Showtime Boxing.

The Prograis vs. Indongo fight will take place at the Deadwood Mountain Grand in Deadwood, South Dakota. It’s an odd location for the Prograis-Indongo fight, as neither of them are from South Dakota. Prograis lives in Houston, Texas, and Indongo is from Namibia. The lead promoter for the card Lou Dibella must have gotten a good deal to stage the card in Deadwood, South Dakota. That’s the only explanation I can think of for him to stage a card in that city/town rather than in Prograis’ hometown of Houston, Texas.

It might be just as well that the 34-year-old Postol is injured, as he would have had a real problem trying to seal with the 29-year-old southpaw Prograis, who has been knocking out his opponents on a regular basis for the past 2 years. Prograis is looking really hard to beat right now. The only guy in the 140 lb. division that might have the talent to beat Progais is Jose Carlos Ramirez (21-0, 16 KOs), who is fighting for the vacant WBC light welterweight title next month against Amir Imam (21-1, 18 KOs) on March 17 at Madison Square Garden in New York. When the smoke clears from these 2 important fights, we’re likely going to see Ramirez and Prograis emerging as the winners. Those 2 will need to fight it out for the WBC 140 lb. title.

“He [Indongo] was preparing for a comeback fight, but obviously this opportunity knocked,” promoter Lou DiBella said to about Indongo. “Regis wanted the kind of opponent who would help him make a statement. He has that in Postol and now he has it with Indongo. It’s one former world champion stepping in for another one. Postol and Indongo both have strong résumés with their only losses coming to ‘Bud’ Crawford. So things have worked out as well as they could.”

Indongo, 35, was knocked out in the 3rd round by WBC/WBO light welterweight champion Terence Crawford in a unification fight last August. Indongo was knocked down in rounds 2 and 3. Indongo was unable to get up after being hit with a body shot in round 3 of the fight. It was a one-sided match from start to finish. Before that loss, Indongo had beaten 140 lb. champions Ricky Burns and Eduard Troyanovsky in back to back fights. The 5’10 ½” Indongo looked good in those fights in using his height and reach to beat them both easily. It might be a different story for Indongo when he gets inside the ring with Prograis.

It’s going to be tough on Indongo and Prograis for them to face each other without much preparation. There’s less than 1 month to go before their fight on March 9th. Both guys are southpaws, so it won’t be as much of an issue for them as it would be if one of them fought out of the orthodox stance. It still won’t be easy for them to take the fight with little preparation for the styles they’ll be facing. In the 5’8” Prograis’ case, he at least has been training to fight a tall guy, as Postol is 5’11”. It won’t be as much of a change for Prograis to prepare for the 5’10 1/2” Indongo. The main difference is Indongo is a southpaw.

In the undercard, unbeaten light welterweight contender Ivan Baranchyk (17-0, 10 KOs) will be facing undefeated Anthony Yigit (21-0-1, 7 KOs) in a 12 round fight. Baranchyk and Yigit have largely faced weak opposition their entire careers. The 25-year-old Baranchyk is from Amursk, Russia. He had a good but not great amateur background in Russia.

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