Bob Arum has vowed that Kazakhstan boxing will go global following this weekend’s huge #MTKFightNight event at the Barys Arena in Nur-Sultan – live on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and on iFL TV.
A who’s who of boxing royalty was in attendance at today’s press conference, including Arum, with the Top Rank founder and CEO making his first trip to Kazakhstan to witness the unbelievable night of action.
The main event of Saturday’s card sees Kazakh hero Zhankosh Turarov (23-0, 16 KOs) take on Mauro Godoy (31-4-1, 16 KOs) for the WBO Inter-Continental super-lightweight title, while WBC bantamweight king Nordine Oubaali (15-0, 11 KOs) defends his world title for the first time against Arthur Villanueva (32-3-1, 18 KOs).
Also on Saturday’s spectacular event is unbeaten Viktor Kotochigov (9-0, 4 KOs), who faces Jairo Lopez (24-10, 16 KOs) for the WBC International lightweight title, plus David Oliver Joyce (10-0, 8 KOs) goes up against Breilor Teran (27-17-1, 20 KOs).
Some of Kazakhstan’s brightest stars make up the undercard, including Ali Baloyev (8-0, 7 KOs), Sultan Zaurbek (7-0, 5 KOs), Nurtas Azhbenov (5-0, 1 KOs), Abay Tolesh (2-0, 2 KOs) and Hasibullah Ahmadi (5-0, 1 KO).
MTK Global President and Hall of Famer Bob Yalen was also part of the press conference, along with many more massive names, including Head of MTK Global MENA Region Ahmed A. Seddiqi, Head of MTK Kazakhstan Askar Salikbayev, MTK Global Professional Development Coordinator Jamie Conlan.
Here’s what was said during today’s press conference…
Top Rank CEO and Founder Bob Arum: “We’re here because we recognise that boxing is a global sport. Many other sports, particularly in the United States, are sports enjoyed just by people in the States, such as American football and baseball.
“There are boxers all over the world that are competing at a top level, and in Kazakhstan there has been a great tradition of boxing. That’s why we’ve joined with MTK Global, to spread the word and give a platform in the USA with ESPN+ to this event that is taking place on July 6.
“We want people in the United States to be able to see what’s going on in this part of the world, and how many terrific fighters there are coming out of Kazakhstan.
“It’s not only the main event, but there are plenty of fights that will be streamed on ESPN+, so it’s a great opportunity for boxing. Together with MTK Global, Top Rank will be back here on a regular basis. I know from what I’ve been informed, the goal is to make Kazakhstan a really important destination for the sport of boxing.”