A professional title fight between two IBA World champions, Russian Sharabutdin Ataev and Loren Alfonso Domingues representing Azerbaijan is to determine the IBA Pro World Cruiserweight Champion in their 10-round bout at IBA Champions’ Night in Dushanbe, Tajikistan on 16 February.
The battle between two strong representatives of the 86kg weight category is an exciting rematch following the final of the IBA World Boxing Championships in Tashkent in May 2023, where Alfonso gave up the crown to Ataev in the finals. They have met three times previously, and the Russian leads in their personal contest with two victories against Alfonso.
‘The IBA has announced its World Championship in professional boxing, a milestone that will have a huge impact on the whole boxing industry,’ IBA Secretary General and CEO Chris Roberts OBE said. ‘The first IBA Pro World Champion was determined in the men’s 60kg in Dubai, and we are looking forward to delivering more champions’ events and the crowning of the best of the best. The cruiserweight contest between Ataev and Alfonso will be a highlight of the night in Dushanbe, as the two strong powers will clash to see who is number one.’
In the 12-round co-main event, local star Shavkat Rakhimov faces Eduardo Nuñez from Mexico in 58.9kg category for the IBF Eliminator World Championship. Rakhimov lost this title in his last bout against Welsh boxer Joe Cordina in Cardiff, and now will fight to become a contender.
IBA World champion Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov from Uzbekistan has already had two professional fights, both on home soil and was victorious. This time he will be challenged abroad, as he meets with Luis Rodrigues Ocaña from Mexico in a 10-round challenge for the IBA Eliminator World Championship in 57kg. The winner is to meet Vsevolod Shumkov from Russia who won his Eliminator fight against Saidel Horta from Cuba last weekend at IBA Champions’ Night in Serpukhov.
IBA Asian championship title will be at stake in 63.5kg fight between Tajikistan’s World Championships bronze medallist Bakhodur Usmonov and Asian Games silver medallist Chu En Lai from Chinese Taipei.
Two 6-round rating fights between Tajik and Uzbek boxers are scheduled to open the program of the night. Supported by home crowd, Davlat Boltaev facing off against Madiyar Saydrakhimov in 92kg. In the 80kg category, local boxer Abdumalik Boltaev will challenge Ulugbek Sobirov.
The next edition of the IBA Champions’ Night will take place in Sochi, Russia on 3 March.