For years now he has been regarded as one of the fiercest and most skilled fighters in all of boxing. And this weekend in Britain, 38-year-old Artur Beterbiev will once again get the chance to show the world how good he is when he takes on famed veteran Anthony Yarde in a scheduled 12-round match at Wembley Arena. The fight will be for Beterbiev’s IBF, WBC and WBO light heavyweight world titles and will be televised live here in the US on ESPN+. For the record, this has a chance of being a barn burner.
How come? Because Beterbiev has won all of his 18 fights from distance. Additionally, the 23-2 Yarde has won all but 1 of his 23 long-distance wins. Anything can happen in the ring, of course, but it’s doubtful this one will go the distance. And then? Well, if Yarde pulls off the upset it becomes the absolute toast of boxing. If, on the other hand, Beterbiev does his thing – as is widely expected – all eyes will be on an undisputed battle between him and fellow Russian Dmitry Bivol. Not that Beterviev looks too far ahead. According to co-trainer John Scully, the fighter’s focus is exactly where he should be.
“He trains so hard and stays so focused on the task at hand,” Scully says. “We don’t just train to get fit, we also train to specifically fight each and every opponent.” Training, according to Scully, is an exercise in precision. Beterbiev, she says, “always works on tactics to counter the opponent.” Suffice it to say, the well-known trainer, ex-fighter and noteworthy broadcaster is confident in attending Saturday’s bout. “Everything is ready for Saturday to be successful for us,” he says.
Beterbiev’s last fight was a two round defeat of the popular Joe Smith last June. In a world title reign now spanning more than five years, the man has beaten other notables like Marcus Browne and Oleksandr Gvozdyk. As for Yarde, aside from a split decision loss to Lyndon Arthur in 2020, his only loss has come at the gloved hand of the ferocious Sergey Kovalev. The Englishman’s last fight was a fourth round knockout by Arthur himself who beat him in 2020. Once again, this weekend’s fight has the makings of a barn… while it lasts.