Earlier today it was revealed that former WBA Bantamweight champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov (27-2, 18) [Жакиянов Жанат] would be continuing his involvement in boxing, despite his retirement from in ring action.
The former fighter has been appointed as a director at a school's boxing department in Petropavl, and will be looking to develop talent in Kazakhstan ahead of the 2020 Olympics.
As a professional fighter Zhakiyanov fought from 2007 to 2017. During his career he fought all over the world, and claimed various titles, notably winning the European Bantamweight title in 2014, stopping Karim Guerfi with a KO of the year contender, and the WBA and IBO titles in 2017, when he upset Rau'shee Warren. In his final bout he would come up short in a bout against the then IBF champion Ryan Burnett.
(Image courtesy of nur.kz)
Unification bouts in boxing are all too rare, but on October 21st we'll see one take place at Bantamweight, as Kazakh WBA "super" champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov (27-1, 18) [Жанат Ескендирулы Жакиянов] clashes with IBF champion Ryan Burnett (17-0, 9).
The bookies have recently priced up that contest,and have made Burnett the clear betting favourite, pricing the Belfast man as a 4/9 favourite to not only defend his belt, but also add the WBA title to his collection. Those who favour the Kazakh are looking at their man being priced at 5/2.
For both men the bout will serve as a first defense and should be viewed as one of those bouts where styles should gel. In one corner we have a pure boxing talent, with Burnett being a fantastic boxer capable of boxing and moving, or standing and countering at range. In the other corner we'll have the raging aggression and pressure of the clumsy but determined Zhakiyanov, who will always look to press the action.
Whilst we do expect the odds to shift before fight time, and more market's to become available, it is interesting to see the odds at the moment, more than 3 weeks away from the bout.
Earlier today it was announced that we would wouuld be getting a Bantamweight world title unification contest on October 21st.
The bout in question will see Kazakh WBA "super" champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov (27-1, 18) [Жанат Ескендирулы Жакиянов] face off with IBF champion Ryan Burnett (17-0, 9) in a really interesting match up.
For both men this will be their first defense, after winning their titles earlier this year.
The Kazakh won his title in an upset win over Rau'shee Warren in February and impressed the American audiences, despite being dropped twice in the opening round. As for Burnett he won the title in June, when he dominated Lee Haskins in a near punch perfect performance.
The bout will be on Sky Sports in the UK and will take place in Belfast.
Earlier today we saw the announcement that WBO Super Flyweight champion Naoya Inoue (12-0, 10) [井上 尚弥] would be defending his title on May 21st in Tokyo, taking on Ricardo Rodriguez (16-3, 5).
It seems that that bout wans't the first choice option for Inoue, with the "Monster's" team stating they had tried to set up a unification bout with IBF champion Jerwin Ancajas and they had also looked into having a bout with WBA Bantamweight champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov.
Although a bout with Rodriguez isn't as big news as some would have hoped foe the announcement of Inoue's next bout did come with some solid plans of the Monster's next step, which will be to make his US debut in September.
At the moment it's unclear who Inoue will be fighting in September but the options seem to be a non-title fight, as he rises to Batamweight, or a final defense of the belt. After that they Ohashi team have stated they are looking to claim a Bantamweight title in December, possibly against Zhakiyanov.
Given the dates and timings it's unlikely that Inoue will face WBC Bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka (27-0-2, 19) [山中慎介] in 2017, though the option to have that fight as a potential 2018 unification bout cannot be ruled out as it would be a genuine super fight next year. Though issues with TV contracts would need to be sorted for the bout to be held.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
This coming Friday fight fans will get the chance to see Zhanat Zhakiyanov (26-1, 18) challenge WBA Bantamweight "Super" champion Rau'shee Warren (14-1-0-1, 4), in what will be Warren's first defense and Zhakiyanov's biggest bout to date. The contest, set to take place in Ohio, is an exellent match up as a power puncher takes on a skilled and speedy operator in what should tell us a lot about both fighters.
Coming in to the bout several companies will be taking bets on the contest and, unsurprisingly, Warren is a clear betting favourite.
The genral price for Warrn is to win is is between 3/10 and 1/5, showing just how much of a favourite the American is. As for Zhakiyanov he is available as high as 7/2, with most places having him around 1/3 and 3/10.
With the bout being a pretty notable one the bookies are carrying more than just the "To win" market with method of victory being another notable one.
In that market the favoured result is is Warren by decision, at 4/7, whilst Warren by stoppage is an attractive 3/1. Zhakiyanov is regarded a 5/1 shot to score a stoppage himself whilst the Kazakh claiming a decision is an outlier at 14/1. For those interested in a draw the odds are 25/1.
Another market is the "over-under", or "Total Rounds" market. The spread here is 9.5 rounds with the under being priced at 5/2 whilst the over is 2/7.
Related - Zhakiyanov takes on Warren for WBA gold!
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