WEIGHT WORRIES, BUT MONTE CARLO FIGHTERS COME THROUGH
SCARE FOR WORLD CHAMPION HEKKIE BUDLER AND MIDDLEWEIGHT CONTENDER MAX BURSAK, WHO INITIALLY COME IN OVER.
Monte Carlo, June 20 - All eight boxers made the weight just before noon on Friday for Saturday’s “KO at the Casino” tournament in Monte Carlo, but not before a few scares, chiefly for WBA and IBO strawweight champion Hekkie Budler and WBC Silver middleweight title holder Max Bursak.
With a large crowd thronging the Monte Carlo Casino for the weigh-in, the aforementioned pair came in 200g and 300g over the limit respectively. Given two hours to shed the weight, they comfortably did so.
For the main event, Martin Murray of the UK, who fights Ukrainian Bursak, looked in exceptional shape. He came in at 72,3kg (159 pounds) compared to Bursak’s 72,8kg (160,5 pounds) and was egged on by members of the famed “Barmy Army” who sang songs throughout proceedings.
Budler, who fights Pigmy Kokietgym of Thailand in the chief supporting bout, weighed 47,62kg (105,2 pounds) compared to his opponent’s 47,56kg (104,8 pounds).
Budler’s camp weren’t too concerned and a quick jog around the block saw the boxer reduce his weight to 47,60kg (104,9 pounds).
Mateusz Masternak of Poland came in bang on the 90kg (198,4 pounds) mark for his cruiserweight fight against Youri Kalenga of the Democratic Republic of Congo, who looked lean and strong at 88,8kg (195,6 pounds).
Light-heavyweight Johnny Muller of South Africa was marginally heavier, at 79,2kg (174,5 pounds), than Doudou Ngumbu (78,7kg – 174 pounds), also of the DRC.
Promoter Rodney Berman said he was satisfied with the build-up to an event that has turned temperatures up in the principality. Tickets were sold out weeks ago.
He added that he was confident of securing a WBC title shot for the winner of Saturday’s bout, saying he was aiming for November.
“With a little luck I can do a double bill that also involves [WBA and IBO] middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin, who is an absolute pleasure to deal with. Plus he’s a big favourite in Monaco,” concluded Berman.
Known as one of the most exclusive vacation destinations in the world and situated on the Mediterranean Sea in South West Europe, Monaco attracts millions of visitors each year. The Monte Carlo Casino, owned and operated by the Société des bains de mer de Monaco, it is the premiere casino destination in Europe. The Monte Carlo Casino continues to attract some of the wealthiest and most well-known celebrities and aristocrats throughout the world.