While the heavyweights continue to grab the attention of fight fans old and new, the wild card of the division is set to make his long-awaited debut in the weight class before the turn of the year.

Murat Gassiev (26-1, 19 KOs) has suffered a series of frustrating postponements as he seeks to mount his assault on the heavyweight division, having signed a promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing way back in April 2019. “He’s had so many withdrawals of fights in the last year, I’ve lost count,” promoter Eddie Hearn told DAZN recently.

That should hopefully end when the Abel Sanchez trained puncher returns in November in his native Russia. According to news agency TASS, Gassiev’s return to the ring will be announced before October 1 and take place in Sochi, Russia.

Former WBA Super and IBF cruiserweight champion Gassiev dropped a unanimous decision to Oleksandr Usyk in the World Boxing Super Series Season 1 final in July 2018 and immediately stated his intention to campaign at heavyweight. A rematch with Usyk is high on his list of motivations.

But injuries, postponements and the Covid-19 Pandemic have delayed Gassiev’s title charge for over two years. Still only 26, time remains on his side.