On Saturday in Stuttgart, Germany, the motto will be “First the World Cup, than the Boxing World Cup.” Saturday’s Universum Champions Night” event at the Porsche Arena will be a world title twinbill. Former world champion and local favorite Firat Arslan (29-4-1, 18 KOs) takes on Steve Herelius (19-1-1, 11 KOs) for the WBA Interim Cruiserweight world championship.
Arslan, who is returning from a career-threatening bicycling injury in January 2009, stated “I have great respect for my opponent. He’s unbeaten as a cruiserweight. But I’m at an age where I don’t want any more build-up fights and want to fight for it all. I want to show what’s still in me. I feel great. I spent five weeks in the Austrian Alps in training camp and I feel great. I went 80 rounds against two sparring partners. Everything went perfectly. I’m ready and I want to be world champion again.”
French strongman Herelius will be fighting for the first time on German soil. “I know all about Germany,” he stated. “I have served as a sparring partner for Wladimir Klitschko, Nikolai Valuev and Alexander Povetkin. From this I have drawn a lot of experience. I look forward to the fight. I’ve been in Stuttgart since since Sunday and have seen some of this beautiful city, but I’m not a tourist. I’ll take the belt back home. Firat is a very tough guy. He never gives up. I know that. But I also have a strong will. People, this will be a beautiful and exciting fight. Be ready for anything!”