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  Cloutier's Canada Corner
Eleider Alvarez: "In The Sixth Round, I Felt
That Kovalev Was Less Energetic Than Me"

By Daniel Cloutier

MONTRÉAL — The new WBO light heavyweight champion of the world, the Montrealer Colombian Eleider Alvarez, believes he won a battle of strategies against the Russian Sergey Kovalev. Saturday evening in the ring of the Hard Rock Hotel-Casino in Atlantic City, Alvarez (24-0-0) dethroned Kovalev (32-3-1) as WBO 175 pounds champion of the world, with a victory by KO in the seventh round.

Kovalev was leading on points after six rounds, but Alvarez provoked three knockdowns in a span of one minute in the seventh round, to win the fight by KO.

“Kovalev attacked energetically in the first half of the fight, but in the sixth round, I felt his punches lost a lot of power,” said Alvarez.” And in the seventh round, I connected my most powerful punches of the fight, and Kovalev went three times on the floor. I am persuaded I was more energetic than him after six rounds of action, and you saw the result. No doubt in my mind, I won the battle of the strategies.”

Kathy Duva, the Kovalev’s promoter, said: “Sergey started the fight very well, but he looked tired after the sixth round, Alvarez did not spent too much energy in the first half of the bout, and you saw it, he was on fire in the seventh rounds.”

Alvarez is probably right when he is saying he won the battle of the strategies.

Alvarez and Kovalev got a rematch clause in their contract, but we will see if this rematch will become reality.

A Russian journalist is persuaded that Kovalev will announce his retirement in the weeks to come, instead dispute a rematch with Alvarez. This writer said: “Sergey is 35 years old, and he lost three of his last six bouts (two against Andre Ward). I won’t be surprised at all if Sergey end his boxing career.”

The promoter of the GYM Group, Yvon Michel, the Alvarez’s promoter, was so excited after the fight. “Eleider just obtained one of the most important win in the history of the Canadian pro boxing,” said Yvon Michel. “Kovalev was established favorite to win this fight (4-1), and Eleider won it by KO in less than seven rounds. Eleider scored a lot of significant wins since the beginning in pro boxing career, but this conquest of the WBO light heavyweight championship of the world is clearly the biggest achievement of his life. I never saw Eleider so excited when the referee confirmed his victory, and us too were very excited.”

Yvon Michel will discuss with Kathy Duva next week, to see if a rematch Kovalev-Alvarez is possible or not. The big question, obviously, is to know if Kovalev wants to quit boxing or try again.


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