John Docherty has the opportunity to put his career back on track when he fights in Russia on May 7.
The Scottish super middleweight (9-1, 7 KOs) will make his debut for new manager Al Siesta (on a Siesta Boxing Promotions show) when he faces Artysh Lopsan in Ekaterinburg over eight rounds. The 2018 Commonwealth Games Bronze medallist will continue to be promoted by Matchroom.
Docherty, 23, suffered his first professional loss last November when Jack Cullen got the better of him over ten rounds. Docherty made changes to his team earlier this year when it was announced he would be managed by Siesta while trained by Grant Smith at the Steel City Gym in Sheffield thus leaving the Matchroom Gym and the tutelage of Tony Sims.
Twenty-six-year-old Lopsan (5-1-1, 3 KOs) caused a bit of an upset last month toppling one-time Frank Warren hope Vijender Singh in India. The 2008 Olympic medallist has never hit the heights that some expected when his professional career began five and a half years ago. The fact remained, however, that Singh was unbeaten in a dozen bouts prior to fighting Lopsan but came unstuck when the Russian stopped him in the fifth round of their eight-round bout.
Docherty v Lopsan is part of an undercard which is headlined by Magomed Kurbanov (rated number five by the WBO) versus Liam Smith (rated number two) for the vacant WBO International super welterweight title. Smith’s trip to Russia will represent the fourth fight overseas for the Scouser in his last six starts as he looks to close in on a world title shot against WBO world champion Brian Castano.
Main image: Mark Robinson