Juergen Braehmer will defend his WBA World light heavyweight championship over a scheduled 12 rounds against Nathan Cleverly at Jahnsportforum in Neubrandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, on Saturday, October 1.
A native son of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Braehmer, who’ll turn 38 on October 5, is a 17-year pro (48-2, 35 KOs) who won the then-vacant title in December 2013 by beating Marcus Oliveira via unanimous decision. The southpaw has successfully defended six times, most recently this March by beating Eduard Gutknecht via unanimous decision. Never stopped, the German hasn’t lost since November 2008, failing to wrest the WBA World light heavyweight title from Hugo Hernan Garay, who won by unanimous decision.
Twenty-nine-year-old Cleverly, a Welshman, is an 11-year ring vet (29-3, 15 KOs) who won the interim WBO World light heavyweight title in December 2010 by beating Nadjib Mohammedi via unanimous decision. “Clev” was named full-fledged champ after Braehmer was stripped of the title in May 2011 (the German had won the interim belt in August 2009 by stopping Aleksy Kuziemski via 11th-round TKO, becoming “regular” champ after Zsolt Erdei vacated three months later). Cleverly successfully defended five times before losing to Sergey Kovalev by fourth-round TKO in August 2013. He scored the vacant WBA Inter-Continental cruiserweight title in May 2014 by stopping Shawn Corbin via second-round TKO. He last won in May 2015, stopping Tomas Man by first-round TKO. He lost in his quest for the WBC International light heavyweight title in his most recent fight, last October, Andrzej Fonfara winning by unanimous decision, a bout that marked Cleverly’s return to light heavyweight.
Previously discussed, and even scheduled, bouts between Braehmer and Cleverly never came about. In fact, Braehmer was supposed to defend his WBO against Cleverly in May 2011, but withdrew shortly before the fight was supposed to take place because of an eye injury. It was because of that withdrawal that the WBO stripped him of his title, awarding it to Cleverly.
“In boxing you can never say never,” says Braehmer. “This is a fight the fans have wanted to see for a long time and I’m happy it’s finally happening. I look forward to meeting Nathan Cleverly in the ring at the Jahnsportforum and proving once and for all who is the better boxer.”
“This fight has been destined to happen and I can’t wait now,” Cleverly says. “It’s finally here — Juergen and I will finally go to battle and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”
The fight will air live on Sky Sports.
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.