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Anthony Yarde ready for Artur Beterbiev fight in October

Image: Anthony Yarde ready for Artur Beterbiev fight in October

By Dan Ambrose: Anthony Yarde is amped up for a title shot in the works against IBF/WBC/WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev in October in London, England.

Yarde (22-2, 21 KOs) reports that his promoter has already let him know that he’ll be challenging unified 175-lb champion Beterbiev (18-0, 18 KOs) in London in October, and he’s excited about the opportunity.

Boxing fans were hoping for a bigger match between Beterbiev and WBA 175-lb champion Dmitry Bivol, but Top Rank promoter Bob Arum prefers that his fighter Artur defends against Yarde.

Arum says there’s a chance that Beterbiev could fight for the undisputed championship in early 2023, but that doesn’t sound like a realistic projection.

It’s possible that Arum wouldn’t won’t make the fight even if Bivol was freed up, which he won’t be due to him likely taking on Canelo Alvarez in a rematch at that time.

For the 30-year-old Yarde, this will be his second chance at fighting for a world title after losing to former WBO 175-lb champion Sergey Kovalev in 2019.

Yarde with speed advantage

“From what I’ve been told, the two promoters, and the person that promotes me, Frank Warren, and the person that promotes Beterbiev, they’re going to come to an agreement that Beterbiev comes to London to fight me,” said Anthony Yarde to talkSPORT Boxing about his next fight against unified 175-lb champion Artur Beterbiev.

“I feel like the edge that I’ll have is speed,” said Yarde about the advantage he has over Beterbiev. “From what I saw being there [for Beterbiev vs. Joe Smith Jr], I feel like I’m a lot faster than him. He’s got a lot more experience.

“He’s smart, he surprised me as well how he fought Joe Smith. He looks like a wrecking ball, but as Spencer said, it’s a lot more calculated.

“For me, it’s you can always see something outside of the ring, you can see everything, but once you’re in the ring in front of somebody, it could be the way they shape up, it could be the motion with the way they throw their punches.

“It could be anything,” said Yarde on what he saw in his scouting mission for Beterbiev’s last fight against Joe Smith Jr.

“That’s something we’ll see on the night, and that’s something where they’re not only smart inside the ring, they’re smart outside of the ring as well,”  said Yarde when asked how he’ll defeat Beterbiev.

“If he knows he’s fighting me next, he’s watching me already or he’s been watching me or his team has been watching me or listening to everything I’m saying.

“It’s one of the things that I learned from the Kovalev fight because I spoke a lot before the Kovalev fight. For this fight, it’s the ultimate focus. It’s a more important fight, and it’s in London.

“I’m going to see familiar faces, and it’s at a different time in my career as well,” said Yarde.

October clash in London

“That’s what’s been said and that’s next, and it’s going to be around October time,” Yarde continued. “I’m looking forward to that. Bob Arum, the two promoters have agreed on, and it’s been put out there by both promoters as well.

“If Beterbiev won that fight [against WBO light heavyweight champion Joe Smith Jr], he would come to London to fight me in October]. For me, it’s world titles.

“Even if the fight is a build-up fight or whatever, for me, it has to make sense. From the beginning, I’ve said, ‘I don’t care who I’ll fight.

“I’ll fight anybody.’ However you go up the ranks, you’re going to have to fight these people anyway, but there are people in the background that have put business plans in place, which makes sense.

“When you watch the careers of Mike Tyson, Floyd Mayweather and all these kind of people, it was a business plan that was put in place. There’s always been this thing, ‘Anthony Yarde, world champion.’ My route has always been hard.

“My first world title fight was against [Sergey] Kovalev in Russia, and it looks like my second fight is going to be against another Russian, hopefully in London. There’s always a procedure to get to that world title.

No interest in tune-up

“When it got put to me to fight [Joshua] Buatsi, before I’ve got a unification bout, to me, that makes no sense,” said Yarde.

“To me, there’s a danger for you that they take the route to unify the belts between Bivol and Beterbiev,” said Simon Jordan.

“Then you get in the situation where they might have a rematch clause in there, and all of a sudden, you’re sitting there with your thumb up your backside for eighteen months waiting for an opportunity.

“Would you prefer because the British press would make it about the battle of Britain if you fight Joshua Buatsi or Craig Richards, and perhaps Craig Richards isn’t in the equation anymore?

“But would you prefer to fight someone like Joe Smith or someone like that if you’re having to wait for a world title shot? How do you feel about fighting [a tune-up?].

“People will clamor if you can’t make a world title shot, they’ll clamor for you and Joshua, I guarantee, and you’re not ducking anybody, I know that. How do you feel about that?” said Jordan to Yarde.

“For me, it’s just what makes sense,” said Yarde. “I’ve said that I’ll fight anybody that is put in front of me. The aim is to be a world champion and hold the world title and have a fantastic career.

“As I’ve been told, it’s October,” Yarde said about his title shot against IBF/WBC/WBO 175-lb champion Beterbiev.

“That’s what’s been said. When I’m told, ‘You ducked Buatsi,’ I’m just laughing because if Buatsi had a unification bout next, he’d be laughing at me. He’s not been looking at me anyway. It’s just been promoters talking.

“So for me, it just has to make sense. At 30, I feel like I’m in my prime, I feel like I’m seriously in my prime,” said Yarde.

“Anthony is in his prime,” said Jordan. “He’s had some heavy fights with Kovalev and Lyndon Arthur, which was a longer fight, but most of his decisions have been easy.

“He’s passed most of his fights. He’s been in control of most of his fights, so he’s got no real damage on the clock. The other kid, Beterbiev, has just knocked out Joe Smith.

“So this guy is not in the way either. When he fights, Beterbiev is in a good place and so is he [Yarde]. It’s a great fight,” said Jordan.

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