The last 48 hours will be a time that Nathan Cleverly will look back on, with mixed emotions in the future. On Wednesday the Welshman found out that Jurgen Braehmer wouldn’t be arriving in London to defend his belt against him.
By Thursday evening Cleverly had been officially crowned the new WBO light-heavyweight champion without throwing a punch, after Braehmer was stripped of the his belt.
He had taken part in a heated press conference with new opponent drafted in Liverpool’s Tony Bellew the commonwealth champion, rival and second behind Cleverly in the British rankings.
The presser went off with a bang, with both coming close to blows there and then, each promised to knock the other out, before Cleverly offered to take it outside. Which then in-turn provoked an animated Bellew to blow a fuse and start swearing at Cleverly, something along the lines of he was a ‘fornicating rodent’
A fight was now in the offing that was ready to match, if not surpass the tension and bad blood, that the other big Saturday night fight on the same bill, had held a monopoly on until then, James DeGale v George Groves!
Just when fight fans were licking their lips at the prospect of Cleverly defending his newly acquired strap against the confident brash Bellew and had given it a seal of approval… Then there was more unexpected news.. ‘Another change of opponent for Cleverly!
The Bellew fight had evaporated, as quick as it had drenched us with optimism, and with it Cleverly’s chance to settle a long standing feud with Bellew, who had been calling him out for a couple of years.
|Aleksy Kuziemski – by europeboxing.com|
Bellew had failed to make the weight! Questions must be asked as to why Bellew’s check weigh in hadn’t taken place, prior to the fight being announced officially to the boxing world at a press conference. Bellew admitted to being around 6 lbs over the legal limit with three days to go, but insisted he would have no problem shifting it.
It turned out that Bellew was infact way more than 6 lbs over the limit and with stepping in late and the health fears of entering a heated world title fight at just three days notice were not a risk that was going to be taken and an executive decision was made to cancel Bellew’s title challenge.
German based Pole Aleksy Kuziemski, who had been on the short list of possible challengers before Bellew was chosen for the task. Going to press this morning Kuziemski was still in contention to arrive in the UK to face the unbeaten Cleverly and if he does happen and he gets here in one piece, uncut and under 175 lbs, he will most likely be wrapped in cotton wool and given a 24 hour guard to make sure he arrives at the O2 Arena and Cleverly gets to officially in his own mind fight and win the belt in the ring.
Cleverly takes up the story and comments on the crazy last 48 hours. VIDEO ABOVE by www.frankwarren.tv
by Chris Maylett