Two World Boxing Federation Intercontinental title fights are set for Saturday March 17 at the Fitnessclub Sportlife in Kiev, as undefeated Ukrainians Vitali Kopylenko and Vasyl Tarabarov clash for the vacant Middleweight crown, and Timur Akhundov faces Hungarian Arpad Vass for the vacant Featherweight title.
Switzerland-based Vitali Kopylenko, 16-0 (7), will be in his first championship bout as a professional, and will fight in his country of birth for the first time since his professional debut in 2008. Tarabarov, 22-0-1 (8), on the other hand has several title fights under his belt.
Vasyl Tarabarov was born in Smolensk, Russia in 1981, but later relocated to Ukraine and made his professional debut at nineteen years of age. In 2002 he captured Youth and Intercontinental titles in only his eights paid bout, and the following year he added another regional strap to his collection.
In 2006 Tarabarov won the Ukrainian national title, and while it has only amounted to four fights since then he is now determined to win his fourth championship and rejuvenate his career with a victory over his 28-year-old countryman on March 17.
Timur Akhundov, 12-2-1 (4), will also, just like his opponent, be going for his first professional title in the co-feature. After a rough start to his career where he went 4-2 in his first six outings, he has since gone undefeated in ten bouts, facing tough veterans such as Andrei Kostin, Suat Laze and Mamed Yadgarov.
Arpad Vass, 8-3 (6), from Budapest is a live underdog against Akhundov, and is a dangerous opponent with his considerable punching-power. His tree losses came against Luke Wilton (9-2-1), former European title-challenger Andriy Kudryavtsev (37-9), and former British and Commonwealth champion Stephen Smith (12-1), so he has been in with championship caliber boxers before.
The Kopylenko vs. Tarabarov and Akhundov vs. Vass WBF Intercontinental title double-header will be promoted by Oleg Bruskov, and is shaping up to be an interesting night of boxing in the Ukrainian capital.