Enrico Koelling will defend his WBA Inter-Continental light heavyweight title against Ryno Liebenberg over a scheduled 12 rounds at the Jahnsportforum in Neubrandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, on Saturday, October 1. The fight will be on the undercard of the Juergen Braehmer-Nathan Cleverly WBA World light heavyweight title match.
Koelling, 26, has fought out of his native Berlin since 2012 (21-1, 6 KOs). He first won the vacant title in June 2014 by beating Patrick Bois via unanimous decision, only to lose it to Mirco Ricci by unanimous decision in February 2015, his sole loss to date. Fourteenth-ranked by the WBA, Koelling regained the vacant belt in his most recent fight, this April, by beating Oleksandr Cherviak via unanimous decision.
Hailing from South Africa, his 31-year-old opponent is a six-year pro (17-3, 12 KOs) who’s won several minor and regional belts, including the vacant IBO Inter-Continental light heavyweight title by beating Johnny Muller via unanimous decision in June 2013 and the vacant WBC International light heavyweight title by stopping Joey Vegas via first-round TKO in March 2014. Liebenberg last won in September 2015, knocking out Makhosandile Zwengu in the second, thus scoring the vacant South African light heavyweight title. He most recently fought this April, losing out on the vacant IBO International light heavyweight title to Erik Skoglund, who won by unanimous decision.
“I’m looking forward to this fight,” says Koelling. “Liebenberg has proven he can hang with the top guys in the light heavyweight division, and by beating him, I will prove that I can do the same. I want to fight for world titles and this fight is another step in the right direction for me.”
“Koelling is a good boxer,” Liebenberg says. “In the amateurs he beat a lot of fighters who are now world-rated, but this is the pros and it’s a different story. He lacks power and movement. He doesn’t dance and run away, he stands and fights, and that suits my style. I know if I land, he’s going to go!”
“This is a chance for Enrico to show that he belongs at the top,” adds promoter Kalle Sauerland. “If he beats Liebenberg, he will not be far away from a world title shot. It will be a tough fight, full of action. The fans in Neubrandenburg can look forward to an explosive encounter at the Jahnsportforum.”
This article was penned by the author who is not related to the WBA and the statements, expressions or opinions referenced herein are that of the author alone and not the WBA.