Isaac Chilemba’s opponent IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey ‘Krusher’ Kovalev has camped in Armenia Mountains in preparation for the July 11 title defence at DIVS Sports Palace in Ekaterinburg, Russia.
The bout, sponsored by Russian Copper Company and Igor Altushkin, will be televised in the United States, exclusively on HBO.
It will be the first time, in 11 years, for the Russian boxer, who is now based in the US, to fight in his homeland and he told Skysports that he opted for the mountains to suit his training.
“I try to look for mountainous regions which provide the right elevation and terrain for my conditioning training (biking, running). Armenia is well-known for its mountains and terrain, plus it was also a good opportunity to get away from the attention, to focus solely on training.”
Kovalev was not alone in Armenia. He said: “The Russian Boxing Olympic team had their training camp in the same area (Tsaghkadzor, Armenia) as well, so I had good company around me, the right training mentality and focus level. Help from the local trainers and Russian national team boxers was quite handy with finding the new trails for my runs and biking.”
However, Chilemba, who is in South Africa in preparation for the fight, has promised victory on July 11.
“We have been working hard and I can promised you that come July 11, we will be victorious. We are bringing the world title to Africa. I am doing this for Africa,” he said.
Chilemba is coming off a majority decision loss to unbeaten Canadian Eleider Alvarez in November 2015.
Averez outpointed Chilemba 114-114, 118-110 and 115-113 at the Videotron Centre in Quebec City, Canada. n