Will we see Dmitry Bivol vs Artur Beterbiev undisputed title fight in 2024?

In 2023, the best fought the best in boxing’s smaller weight classes. Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford clashed, while Gervonta Davis and Ryan Garcia broke social media.

The heavyweights are finally getting involved on December 23, with Tyson Fury vs. Oleksandr Usyk to follow early next year. Similarly two rungs down, if he can win his fight in Saudi Arabia on the “Day of Reckoning” megacard, Dmitry Bivol may finally get a chance to face a fellow light heavyweight champion. 

Bivol, who took down the mighty Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in 2022, ended his year with a win against Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez. The WBA light heavyweight champion had big plans for 2023, but a fight for him never materialized. Now he defends his title against Lyndon Arthur, currently on a four-fight win streak. 

At light heavyweight, Bivol is one of two champions. Artur Beterbiev, the WBC, IBF and WBO champion, has a firm grip on the division thanks to his knockout power. One would assume the two would have fought this year.

However, it never came to fruition. The WBC decided to remove Russian fighters from their rankings in 2022 due to Russia’s conflict with Ukraine, preventing that clash for all the marbles. 

“If I get the chance to fight Beterbiev for the WBC title, then, of course, my team will do everything to get approval,” Bivol told The Sporting News in April. “It’s my goal to be the best in the light heavyweight division. It would be like a dream come true for me. I want this fight. Of course, it’s a big dream.”

WATCH: Dmitry Bivol vs. Lyndon Arthur, live on DAZN

Will Dmitry Bivol fight Artur Beterbiev? 

Beterbiev has a residency in Canada. He will defend his belts against former super middleweight champion Callum Smith on January 13.

Bivol must also get past Arthur before even thinking about 2024. While the 6ft fighter with 11 knockouts has plenty of options, from contenders to a rematch against Canelo, he is more than ready to face Beterbiev.

Saudi Arabia has booked a monster fight card this weekend, with Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Jarrell Miller and Jai Opetaia also involved. There are rumors Joshua and Wilder could fight in March in the area, a month after Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk clash to determine the undisputed heavyweight champion. It is not far off to think Saudi Arabia would try and get Bivol vs. Beterviev to happen in the country too. 

MORE: Arthur plotting upset mission against ‘favourite fighter’ Bivol

“It’s a big goal, and when we signed the contract, we discussed not only fighting against Lyndon Arthur, we discussed about another fight too, for four belts. We discussed undisputed,” Bivol told The Sporting News this past week. “They want to make this fight, and they can make this fight. This is really good for me. It’s what I need.” 

Regarding the WBC’s ruling, Bivol stated he talked with WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman, and it doesn’t seem he would be against it. Bivol could even potentially take residency somewhere else, like Beterviev.

As of now, Sulaiman hasn’t changed his stance. The boxing world will have to wait and see what happens when Bivol faces Arthur and Beterbiev faces Smith. Both are tough challenges and could spoil plans for the champions. Following January 13, the “will they, won’t they?” question may go from “unlikely” to “possibly.”  

Source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *