Israil Madrimov has revealed that WBA World Light Heavyweight Champion Dmitry Bivol has helped prepare for the rematch against Michel Soro. Madrimov was in camp with Bivol ahead of his win against Canelo Alvarez.
“Dmitry Bivol is another example of someone who believed in themselves, him winning that fight [against Canelo Alvarez] and me being a part of the camp and working with him it really means a lot. He proved that nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself and it’s a big motivation for us guys that all train together. I gained a lot from sparring him, I helped him and he helped me.”
Watch the full video here:
After the training camp that the pair shared together, Bivol beat all odds to defeat one of boxing's biggest stars, Canelo Alvarez. Bivol was a massive underdog entering that fight, but was in control of the contest and won via unanimous decision.
Now, that victory has given Israil Madrimov an increased sense of self-belief ahead of his next fight, a rematch against Michel Soro.
Israil Madrimov and Michel Soro have been ordered to have a rematch by the WBA
The first fight between Madrimov (8-0) and Soro (35-3-1) ended rather controversially. Madrimov won the bout via a ninth-round TKO.
‘The Dream’ Madrimov launched a barrage of punches after the bell in the ninth round. Seemingly, both Madrimov and the referee did not hear the bell. The referee decided to stop Soro on his feet following a combination of punches.
Watch Israil Madrimov vs. Michel Soro I here:
The bout was an eliminator for the WBA Super Welterweight Championship. The WBA have ordered a rematch between the pair due to the unsatisfactory ending. The sanctioning body, however, has not reversed the bout to a no-contest. ‘The Dream’ still has the stoppage victory on his record.
The pair are now set to have a rematch on July 9 at the O2 Arena. The bout will take place on the undercard of another rematch, the heavyweight bout between Derek Chisora and Kubrat Pulev.
Whilst a shot at the WBA belt is on the line for the winner, it is unclear how long they will have to wait for the shot.
Jermell Charlo holds all four belts in the weight class and has other mandatories to deal with first. Among those are WBO Mandatory Challenger Tim Tsyzu and IBF Mandatory Challenger Bakhram Murtazaliev. The promoter of Murtazaliev has filed a legal challenge against the WBO for ordering Charlo to fight Tsyzu, and what happens next is unclear.