Anthony Yarde to fight Sergey Kovalev for WBO title in Russia

Kovalev and Yarde
Kovalev (left) has been a mainstay at the top of the light-heavyweight division in recent years

British light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde will challenge for a world title for the first time against WBO champion Sergey Kovalev in Russia on 24 August.

London's Yarde, 27, has 17 knockouts from his 18 career wins and has been talked up as a future world champion.

But Kovalev, 36, has proven a feared fighter and has contested a world title in each of his last 15 fights.

The Russian, who has 33 wins, three defeats and a draw to his name, will fight on home soil in Chelyabinsk.

Yarde said: "I am more than happy to achieve my goal in Russia and I think it is only right that a great world champion such as Kovalev is given the opportunity to defend in his home country. He has earned that right.

"Everything has fallen perfectly into place for me, this will be my coronation as world champion and I am going to realise my dream by beating the most decorated of the current world title holders."

Kovalev shot to prominence in 2013 when he took on Nathan Cleverly in Cardiff and became a world champion for the first time, demolishing the Welsh fighter inside four rounds.

He went on to beat the likes of Bernard Hopkins and Jean Pascal to amass three of the four major world titles at 175lbs.

After his first career defeats in back-to-back matches with American Andre Ward during 2016 and 2017, he quickly regained world-champion status.

Yarde has looked impressive throughout his four years as a professional but this first world-title tilt will be a substantial step up both in occasion and the calibre of his opponent.

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