Juergen Braehmer puts the WBA light heavyweight title on the line when he takes on fellow German Robin Krasniqi in Rostock on Saturday.
Braehmer (45-2, 33 KOs) will be looking to extend a long unbeaten run that stretches back to November of 2008.
His most recent defence, against Pawel Glazewski last December, saw him win inside a round, though he shouldn’t expect such an easy night against Krasniqi.
The challenger boasts a 43-3 (16 KOs) professional record and has won four in a row since failing in his bid to take the WBO title from Nathan Cleverly nearly two years ago.
When: Saturday, March 21 at 10 p.m. GMT
Where: Rostock, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany
TV: Sat.1 (Germany) Sky Sports (UK)
Live Stream: Sky Sports (subscription required and region restricted)
Despite being 36, Braehmer’s hunger for success is still as strong as ever.
His last bout was over in a hurry, though he is not expecting things to be so straightforward against the latest challenger to be put in front of him.
Asked about Krasniqi at the pre-fight press conference, the southpaw said, per fightnews.com: “Krasniqi is a young ambitious fighter who wants to take my title away from me. But that’s not going to happen. As always, I will defeat my opponent and retain my title.”
Braehmer knows that holding onto the gold is crucial at this stage of his career.
The light heavyweight division includes two big names in Sergey Kovalev and Adonis Stevenson, and a unification fight against either man would be a major money-spinner.
Krasniqi will be eager to make the most of his second chance at becoming a world champion.
His first attempt came back in April of 2013 when he travelled to England to face Cleverly, a fighter who was unbeaten at the time.
The Welshman came out on top at Wembley, winning on points to retain the WBO belt. Only one judge gave Krasniqi a round, the other two scoring it as a shut-out success for the reigning champion.
However, the 27-year-old now believes that defeat was down to timing, per Sky Sports: “That opportunity may have come to soon for me. But now, I’m ready for the perfect match.”
It is hard to look past Braehmer. He is in excellent shape and has never been afraid to go the distance, though his 33 career knockouts show he packs a punch.
Krasniqi—who was born in Kosovo but is now based in Munich—will be eager to perform better than he did against Cleverly.
However, the champion will keep hold of his belt. A stoppage could happen, but a points win looks the most likely outcome.