Anthony Yarde is set with the arduous task of dethroning the undefeated, unified light-heavyweight champion of the world, Artur Beterbiev, on Saturday night.
As fans eagerly await seeing such a great champion on British soil, those who can’t be in attendance have been pleased to see that the event will not be pay-per-view.
Full Undercard Preview
Khalid Ali vs Ivica Gogosevic
There are plenty of Queensberry prospects appearing on the card. Khalid Ali (4-0) is set to take to the stage early in the night, as he faces Croatian journeyman, Ivica Gogosevic (12-44-2) in the super welterweight division. This will be Ali’s fourth fight and the young British-Bangladeshi will be looking to do what Aaron McKenna couldn’t and get the stoppage against the 38-year-old, who has lost his last thirty-two fights.
Umar Khan vs Sandeep Singh Bhatti
National amateur champion and cousin of Hamzah Sheeraz, Umar Khan (5-0), will also look to continue the winning start to his professional career. The 20-year-old super-bantamweight is yet to register a stoppage since turning pro almost two years ago and suffered a scare against Engel Gomez last year, where he was dropped in the second round. Khan will face India’s Sandeep Singh Bhatti (8-5), who went the distance with Isaac Lowe in December.
Charles Frankham vs Joshua Ocampo
Bhatti also took Charles Frankham (6-0) to the judges last year, who will be appearing on the card alongside his brother Joshua Frankham (6-0). The Frankham brothers come from a proud ‘fighting family’ – not only cousins of WBC heavyweight champion, Tyson Fury, but nephews of Johnny Frankham who famously fought and knocked down Muhammad Ali in 1971.
Charles fights Joshua Ocampo (8-10-4), a Colombian super-featherweight who has lost eight bouts on the spin after a decent start to his career. Whereas, welterweight Joshua takes on Joe Hardy (2-4), who picked up a second career win in November, before losing a 38-39 decision three weeks later to Connor Meanwell.
Masood Abdullah vs Lesther Lara
Masood Abdullah (7-0) returns to the ring to fight Nicaragua’s Lesther Lara (17-13-2) in the super-featherweight division. Abdullah has stopped five opponents in his career thus far and will be seeking to add to that record against an opponent who has been knocked out in two of his last four fights.
Sean Noakes vs Santiago Garces
Meanwhile, welterweight Sean Noakes (3-0) has had an impressive start to his career, becoming just the sixth man to stop the durable MJ Hall. Noakes fights 20-year-old Colombian, Santiago Garces who drew with Joshua Ocampo. He was undefeated in his first seven fights but has lost the twelve fights thereafter.
Tommy Fletcher vs Darryl Sharp
Exciting cruiserweight prospect, Tommy Fletcher (3-0) has had the perfect start with three knockouts since his debut in July and a knockout of the year contender in his last fight against Jiri Krejcl. The 21-year-old’s power will be truly tested on Saturday night as he takes on a famously durable opponent in Darryl Sharp (7-96-1). Sharp has suffered just three knockout defeats in his ninety-six losses and has seemingly faced all British prospects between the middleweight and cruiserweight divisions, with Liam Williams being one of the three fighters to have knocked him out thus far.
Moses Itauma vs Marcel Bode
Willy Hutchinson was scheduled to face Emil Markic for the vacant WBO Inter-Continental Light-Heavyweight Title, however the Scotsman has unfortunately had to withdraw due to illness. Instead, one of the highlights of the undercard will be the much-anticipated debut of 18-year-old Moses Itauma, who arrives onto the scene with high praise and high expectations, as he aims to beat Mike Tyson’s record and become the youngest ever heavyweight champion.
Itauma will fight Czech Republic’s Marcel Bode (2-1), who has had just five rounds in his three fights, with early knockout wins in his first two fights, against the same opponent, before being stopped in November against Austra’s Habib Vuqiterna.
Karol Itauma vs Ezequiel Osvaldo Maderna
The night will be an important one for the Itauma family, as Moses’ brother, Karol continues to make waves in the light-heavyweight division. Karol Itauma (9-0) challenges for the vacant WBC International Light-Heavyweight title against Argentina’s Ezequiel Osvaldo Maderna (28-10), who once fought the headliner of the event, Beterbiev and went the distance with former IBF title challenger, Jose Uzcategui. Despite a résumé containing such big names, Maderna has lost four of his last five fights and Itauma will be expecting to add to his seven career knockouts and climb the WBC rankings with a win.
Update result: Ezequiel Maderna defeats Karol Itauma by KO in round 5
Artem Dalakian vs David Jimenez
The final fight of the undercard is for a world title, as Artem Dalakian (21-0) defends his WBA Flyweight Title against Costa Rica’s David Jimenez (12-0). The challenger secured a career best win in his last fight, defeating Ricardo Sandoval by majority decision on the Garcia-Fortuna card. Jimenez will fancy his chances in what appears to be a 50/50 fight on paper, against an inactive champion in Dalakian, with the Ukrainian fighting just once in almost three years. This will be Dalakian’s sixth defence of his world title, since winning the belt in 2018, but just his second fight and first title defence outside of his native country.
Update result: Artem Dalakian defeats David Jimenez by unanimous decision (115-113, 115-113, 116-112)
Artur Beterbiev vs Anthony Yarde: Undercard running order
- Artur Beterbiev vs Anthony Yarde
- Artem Dalakian vs David Jimenez
- Karol Itauma vs Ezequiel Osvaldo Maderna
- Moses Itauma vs Marcel Bode
- Umar Khan vs Sandeep Singh Bhatti
- Charles Frankham vs Joshua Ocampo
- Joshua Frankham vs Joe Hardy
- Sean Noakes vs Santiago Garces
- Khalid Ali vs Ivica Gogosevic
- Masood Abdullah vs Lesther Lara
- Tommy Fletcher vs Darryl Sharp
Main Event Preview
Then it is time for the main event, with Artur Beterbiev (18-0) seeking to make a seventh defence of his IBF world title and his first since becoming a three-belt unified champion.
Despite hopes of an undisputed fight for the winner, against Dmitry Bivol, it seems that Callum Smith will instead be awaiting the winner, providing he comes out on top when he headlines in Liverpool on March 11th. Anthony Yarde (23-2) will be aiming to make Smith’s world title challenge an all-British affair and pull off one of the country’s greatest ever upsets by defeating such a dominant champion in Beterbiev, who has knocked out all eighteen of his opponents in his professional career.
Yarde is no stranger to stoppages himself, recording twenty-two knockouts in his twenty-three victories and will be hoping that his experience of challenging for Sergey Kovalev’s WBO world title in 2019 helps settle any nerves. Defeat to Lyndon Arthur in 2020 appeared to derail Yarde’s title ambitions, however three successive knockouts, including a fourth-round stoppage of Arthur in their rematch have earnt him the position as a mandatory challenger. The fight is expected by many to end inside the distance, with two power-punchers set to meet one another in the middle of the ring, and should be an exciting end to a huge Frank Warren card.
How To Watch
The event will be available to watch on BT Sport for fans in the United Kingdom and those in the United States can view the card through a live stream on ESPN+. Ring walks for the main card are expected to take place around 7pm GMT (2pm ET), with Beterbiev and Yarde entering the ring around 10pm GMT (5pm ET).