Malawi’s boxing icon Isaac ‘Golden Boy’ Chilemba on Friday flew to Russia ahead of his July 20 World Boxing Organisation (WBO) Global title bout against Russian Maxim Vlasov.
The Golden Boy is hoping re-launch his career.
He last fought in August 2018 against Dimitry Bivol in a World Boxing Association (WBA) light heavyweight title bout, which he lost on unanimous points decision.
His opponent Vlasov is also rebuilding after losing a twelve round decision to former WBO champion Krysztof Glowacki at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago.
The fight will be a rematch of their 2011 encounter, which saw Chilemba handing Vlasov his first career defeat with a close ten round unanimous decision.
Chilemba has 25 victories, two draws and six defeats—four of his last five bouts—including setbacks in clashes with Russians Sergey Kovalev and Dmitry Bivol, Ukrainian Oleksandr Gvozdyk, Colombian Eleider Alvarez and UK’s Tony Bellow.
His manager and trainer Jodi Solomon said Chilemba is getting stronger mentally and physically.
The boxer was under severe depression in 2017 and resorted to heavy smoking and drinking.
He confirmed to have even tried to kill himself on three occasions. “He’s okay but he still has moments of depression,” Solomon told The Sowetan last week.