The World Boxing Super Series is taking its cruiserweight tournament to Russia for one of its semifinal matches.
The semifinal bout between IBF cruiserweight champion Murat Gassiev and WBA "regular" cruiserweight champion Yunier Dorticos will take place at the Bolshoy Ice Dome in Sochi, Russia on February 3. The fight will unify the titles with the winner facing the Oleksandr Usyk vs. Mairis Briedis winner in the finals. The WBSS cruiserweight champion is expected to be the unified WBA "regular," WBO, WBC and IBF cruiserweight champion by the end of the tournament.
Promoter Kalle Sauerland, chief boxing officer of tournament owner Comosa AG, said the fight further showcases the tournament's global appeal and that it will be a spectacle to watch two of the best knockout artists in the sport today.
"This fight is a very special one," Sauerland said. "The level in the Ali Trophy tournament is already of the very highest, but when you have two such decorated boxers with massive KO power, then the only guaranteed winner is the fans. Two world champions collide in Sochi, this special Olympic city. Russia, hold tight for the Ali Trophy experience; the lights and stars are on their way."
Fightful was present at the quarterfinal match between Gassiev and Krzysztof Wlodarczyk at the Prudential Center on October 21. Gassiev knocked out Wlodarczyk in the third round to advance to the top four and retain his IBF title. Dorticos retained his title back on September 23 on the only other World Boxing Super Series card to take place in the United States. Dorticos also knocked out Dmitry Kudryashov to advance to the semifinals.
The World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight finals are slated to take place on a date to be determined in May in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.