Kalle Sauerland tells Elliot Foster why he expects to have to push the Mairis Brieidis vs Yuniel Dorticos WBSS final back again
Kalle Sauerland has issued an update regarding the final of the World Boxing Super Series. The Chief Boxing Officer at Comosa AG, the company behind the Muhammad Ali Trophy organisation, had been expecting to be ringside next month for the cruiserweight tournament final between Cuba’s Yuniel Dorticos and Mairis Briedis of Latvia. The final, between the number one and number four-ranked 200-pound fighters in the world, is due to take place at the Arena Riga in Latvia, on May 16.
But Sauerland told Seconds Out that it will have to be pushed back as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
“They’re looking at moving the government ban on events to a further 30 days,” Sauerland, who was forced to initially delay the fight from March 21, says. “I think it’s highly unrealistic that this event will take place on May 16.”
The Super Series, while it has been sensational for fans, producing match-ups of the best against the best, hasn’t been short of its scheduling or logistical nightmares. Season one was hit with an issue in the super-middleweight division when, after injuring his shoulder in his semi-final against Chris Eubank Jr, the then-WBA Super world champion George Groves was forced to wait until September –– rather than the original July date –– to face Callum Smith in the final in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
“We can’t do anything [about the cruiserweight final] until we know exactly what the government is doing,” Sauerland continues. “We’ve said that at all times we will adhere to what the authorities and the experts are telling us and we will then, once we know exactly what is happening, have to push back to a further date.”
Dorticos (24-1, 22 KOs) and Briedis (26-1, 19 KOs) will meet eventually, having navigated their way to the showpiece via respective early finishes against Andrew Tabiti and Krzysztof Glowacki, the latter controversial, in their semi-finals.
“It’s clear that we’re not going to be the only event affected by this, but it’s a frustrating times, of course, as a promoter, but all we can do is go off the advice given by the government and the experts,” concludes Sauerland.