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Q&A: Ivan Redkach

06
Jan
Ivan Redkach (R) on his way to a sixth-round knockout of Alberto Amaro in 2011. Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images.

Ivan Redkach (R) on his way to a sixth-round knockout of Alberto Amaro in 2011. Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images.

Ivan Redkach gets his 2015 campaign underway on Friday when he faces Yakubu Amidu in Cabazon, California. The scheduled 10-round bout headlines Showtime’s first “Shobox: The New Generation” of the New Year (11:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Redkach (17-0, 13 knockouts) is one of several Ukrainians taking the professional game by storm, though his progress hasn’t been as quick as he’d have liked.

“That’s what I wished,” Redkach told RingTV.com through his translator Edward Grigoryan on Monday. “It was (a) management issue. Now I am with Al Haymon, probably everything will go faster.”

The 28-year-old southpaw, who has lived and trained in Los Angeles for five years, intends to make a statement to the lightweight division against Amidu.



“I’m going to box,” he said. “I know I’m going to win but which way I can’t predict.”

Redkach is currently ranked by the WBC (No. 11) and IBF (No. 5).

As well as Redkach-Amidu, Friday’s episode of ShoBox will also show exciting Ukrainian middleweight knockout artist Ievgen Khytrov against unbeaten Maurice Louishome and an intriguing-looking junior middleweight bout between a pair of young unbeaten hopefuls, Patrick Day and Alontez Fox.

Anson Wainwright – What are your thoughts on your fight with Amidu?

Ivan Redkach – He is a strong fighter, he’s tough, but he’s straight up. He’s not a technical boxer.

AW – Your last fight was a wide points decision over Sergey Gulyakevich last June. Tell us about that fight?

IR – I cannot say much. It was a last minute. I was supposed to fight somebody else and I fought Gulyakevich and I won and won clear.

AW – As you touched on you are now aligned with Al Haymon and you’re trained by Robert Garcia.

IR – Robert Garcia is going to help me win the world title and Al Haymon is going to open all the doors so I can do it. Also, I have another physical trainer, Daniel Garcia, who helps with my strength. I am very happy with my team.

AW – All of your pro career has taken place in America. How did you come to move to America?

IR – I love my country. The Ukraine is an awesome country, I was born there. But there isn’t many facilities. The United States has a lot of facilities and it was always my dream to fight here.

AW – How did you become interested in boxing?

IR – I was a little kid in kindergarten and my cousin was going to do boxing so I went to the boxing club. I was only 5 years old. When I was 6 years old, I started. When I was 12 years old I went to a special school where I trained in boxing.

AW – What was your amateur career like?

IR – I had a huge history with amateur fights. I had 300 fights. I was the winner of many Ukrainian national tournaments and European amateur championships. I felt like I was ready and able to compete in those (big international) tournaments (Olympics and World Championships) but I was always named as an alternate. This motivates me to show the world I am a champion in the pro game.

AW – When you look at the lightweight division what are your thoughts?

IR – I think the lightweight division (is strong, it) has Mickey Bey, Jorge Linares, Miguel Vazquez is a good boxer. I like Omar Figueroa, I like (Terence) Crawford very much. There are pretty good fighters there I can face.

AW – The current top 10 according to THE RING magazine is as follows. What are your thoughts?

C – Terence Crawford – I like him very much, he is a very technical boxer. He can work in different positions, he is a very hard puncher. He is a really, really good boxer.
1 – Omar Figueroa – He’s a hard puncher but not a technical guy.
2 – Ray Beltran – I sparred with Ray. I couldn’t say he is one of the best but he is still a good boxer. I’d like to face him in the ring.
3 – Richar Abril – He is one of the boxers I don’t like. He’s not technical, no boxing skills. I would definitely take his belt away from him.
4 – Mickey Bey – I don’t know much about him. I heard he’s a good fighter. His last fight with Miguel Vazquez he won by way of gift. He lost that fight.
5 – Miguel Vazquez – I sparred with him as well. He is a technical boxer. He moves a lot in the ring, which I don’t like, but he is not a hard puncher. He cannot punch as hard as anyone else or like me.
6 – Juan Diaz – He is a very experienced boxer. I cannot say anything bad about him because he’s really good. I have a lot of respect for him. I think he’s really good.
7 – Jorge Linares – He is a good boxer but he has a weak chin. I think I can knock him down.
8 – Daniel Estrada – I don’t know much about him. I saw the last fight (vs. Omar Figueroa) and all I can say about him is he’s a hard puncher.
9 – Sharif Bogare – He’s a good boxer but I don’t like him. For some reason, the way he’s fighting I don’t like him much. I think the fight with Beltran, in my personal opinion, Beltran won.
10 – Dierry Jean – I’ve only seen a couple of fights of his, so I cannot say much. He’s a really good boxer, he’s a head puncher. He’s a physically strong boxer.

AW – Are you targeting anyone in particular?

IR – I am going to concentrate on my upcoming fight Jan. 9, but I’ve always been thinking and dreaming of a fight with Jorge Linares.

AW – Tell us about your life away from boxing?

IR – One of the most important things is I have a baby son on Dec. 17. I am very happy and (it’s) new motivation to win my fight. I am living a regular life. I try to travel a lot. I don’t have much time for a personal life, because I have a dream to become a champion in my division.

AW – In closing do you have a message for Amidu?
IR – I have a lot of respect for him. I am really happy that I am going to have a fight with him. I also want to say thanks to my team and my promoter. Everything I want to say I’m going to say in the boxing ring.

Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him at www.twitter.com/AnsonWainwright

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