Unbeaten heavyweight force Arslanbek Makhmudov headlines fight card in Mexico
Rising heavyweight Arslanbek Makhmudov will look to continue his development when he faces Pavel Sour at the Holiday Inn in Cuernavaca, Mexico on Friday.
The Canadian-based Russian, who was the subject of a New Faces feature in the July 2020 issue of Ring Magazine, has impressed, taking out eight of his 11 pro opponents in the opening round.
“[Sour] is tall and he has a lot of experience,” Makhmudov (11-0, 11 knockouts) told The Ring through Francois Pratte. “He represents a good challenge for me and this fight will help my progression. It motivates me.”
The 32-year-old power-puncher feels that Sour is the correct opponent at this stage of his career as he looks to fine tune a few parts of his game.
“He has a very good jab, he is good at distance and has good reactions,” acknowledged Makhmudov. “Of course, I want to be better in this aspect, so I will do everything in the gym to face this style of boxer.”
In recent months, Makhmudov has been frustrated by several fight dates falling through. However, he has remained calm about the situation and maintained his sharpness.
“It doesn’t bother me because I am always at the gym,” he said. “For this fight I trained with Marc Ramsay and his assistant Samuel Decarie. Everything went well and we had a really good training camp for this fight that represents a huge opportunity for me.
“The postponements only gave me more time to get prepared and I will be ready to go on July 23rd.”
The physically imposing Russian, who stands 6-foot-5½ and weighs a solid 260 pounds, is driven to reach the top.
“For this year, I have high expectations,” said Makhmudov. “I really want to win this fight and show what I can do to the rest of the world. After that, I think that what would be the best for my progression is to get two more fights with the top fighters in my division.
“My ultimate goal is to become world champion, so I stay focused and I work hard all the time with my team.”
Makhmudov’s promoter, Camille Estephan of Eye of the Tiger Management, knows his fighter cannot afford a setback at this juncture.
“It is of the utmost importance to keep developing Arslanbek,” said Estephan. “[We have to] make sure he’s active and going through the ranks. We have decided to get him on the main event in Mexico.
“[Eye Of The Tiger Management] have taken the challenge to bring him all the way to the top on our own. We benefitted tremendously from all the help of our friends at Golden Boy and thank them for everything they have done. We move on for now and who knows what happens in the future.”
Estephan is confident that his fighter can beat the best heavyweights in the world.
“My plan is to position him as a must-face for the champions,” said the promoter. “We want the fans to demand the fight because of the apparent threat that he is to any top fighter in the division, including the champions [Ring and WBC titleholder Tyson] Fury and [IBF, WBA and WBO beltholder Anthony] Joshua. In my mind Arslanbek is the future world champion, nothing less. ”
Sour (13-4, 8 KOs) turned professional in 2016. The 38-year-old Czech Republic fighter won his first six outings before tasting defeat to rising heavyweight Filip Hrgovic (KO 1). He returned to the win column but has since suffered losses to Jermaine Franklin (UD 10), Hughie Fury (TKO 3) and Nathan Gorman (TKO 2).