The former world champion has moved up a weight division to take on ex-sparring partner Sergey Rabchenko…
Kell Brook v Sergey Rabchenko, Saturday 3 March, 7.30pm, Sky Sports Action/HD (CH 517/507) and Sky Sports Main Event/HD (CH 511/501)
Kell Brook can never be accused of taking the easy option. Ten months after losing his IBF world welterweight title to Errol Spence Jr, the Sheffield-born star has shunned a straightforward comeback scrap. Instead he's chosen to move up to the super-welterweight division to fight the highly rated Sergey Rabchenko at the FlyDSA Arena – but at least he'll be on home turf.
“The Spence defeat cut deep, but now I’m back with a new challenge at 154lbs,” reveals Brook. “Rabchenko is a dangerous fight for the return, but I want to jump straight back in at world level, and our styles will gel for an electric fight. I’ve had life and death with Sergey in sparring. He’s very tough and he knows beating me is his golden ticket. He’s coming to win, so I’m excited.”
It’s easy to see why Brook is so enthusiastic about the upcoming bout. If he takes out Rabchenko in front of what’s sure to be a fiery home crowd, it’ll both atone for the Spence defeat and put him in line for a shot at the super-welterweight title.
And in the other corner...
Well, Rabchenko is from Belarus, he has 29 wins from his 31 professional fights, and if he’s intimidated by Brook’s confidence and pedigree, then he is doing a good job of hiding it. “I’m really looking forward to this fight,” he smiles. “It’s going to be a war, and the winner will go on and challenge for the world title. It’s a must-win fight for both of us.” Pressure? What pressure?
Elsewhere on what is a superb card from the Steel City, Birmingham’s much-hyped super-bantamweight Gamal Yafai will attempt to win the WBC international super-bantamweight belt against Doncaster’s Gavin McDonnell, and Yorkshire’s David Allen will battle Commonwealth heavyweight champion Lenroy Thomas in a potentially explosive rematch.
It’s going to be a real knockout of a night and Sky Sports subscribers can see every jab, hook and body shot at home or on the go with the Sky Sports app. Let the countdown begin.
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