One of modern boxing’s most cursed matchups may finally be happening. 15 months after their respective semifinal victories, Mairis Briedis and Yuniel Dorticos will meet for World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight gold in Munich on September 26th.
Plagued by delays due to the WBSS’ ongoing financial issues, the pair didn’t get the green light to fight until this year, then saw two planned dates fall through due to COVID. Now, we’re finally just 18 days away.
Briedis (26-1, 19 KO) defeated Mike Perez in the opening round of the inaugural tournament before fighting Oleksandr Usyk to an impressive majority decision defeat in the semis. His efforts earned him the top seed in Season Two, but his new road has proven far rockier. The quarterfinals saw him barely scrape past Noel Mikaelian in controversial fashion, after which he leveled Krzysztof Glowacki in a foul-filled mess of a brawl. The latter victory earned him the WBO belt, but the sanctioning body elected to strip him when he pursued the Dorticos (23-1, 21 KO) fight instead of a rematch.
“The KO Doctor,” meanwhile, smashed up Dmitry Kudryashov to earn a spot in the Season 1 semis, only for Murat Gassiev to steadily break him down en route to a 12th-round finish. He was the #4 seed this time around, and after having a bit more trouble than expected against Mateusz Masternak, he absolutely leveled Andrew Tabiti in the semis.
“We are very happy about the announcement of the final,” said Latvia’s Mairis Briedis. “I love the fact that it will be in Munich as it reminds me of every time I went to train with the Klitschko brothers in Germany and the flights were always via Munich. Those are some great memories of the time spent with them there!”
Said Miami-based Cuban, Yuniel ‘The KO Doctor’ Dorticos, IBF World Cruiserweight Champion: “To all my fans worldwide, in Europe and especially in Munich, Germany: I am super happy the World Boxing Super Series final will take place in Munich, Germany, and I will see you all on Saturday, September 26th. The KO Doctor is back and ready to prescribe another dose of pain and take the Muhammad Ali Trophy back to Miami!”
It’s not the three-belt unification it once was, but this is still a clash between two of the best 200-pounders in the game. Just gotta keep it all together for two more weeks, lads.