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Thursday, January 2, 2014
Chisora gets opponent: Rudenko

By Dan Rafael

European heavyweight champ Dereck Chisora, slated to fight Feb. 15 at the Copper Box Arena in London, now has an opponent for the bout: Andriy Rudenko of Ukraine.

England’s Chisora (19-4, 13 KOs), a former world title challenger, rebounded from three consecutive losses (albeit one being a rip-off split decision in Robert Helenius’ hometown) to win four fights in a row in 2013. Chisora hopes to continue the winning streak in 2014 and land himself another title opportunity.

“Happy New Year everyone and let this be the year that I get an opportunity at the world heavyweight title and bring it back to Britain,” Chisora said in announcing the fight Thursday. “Rudenko is a great start to the year for me. He’s a strong, powerful and an undefeated challenger who’s got his own ambitions for the world title and will be coming over here to knock me out.”

Rudenko (24-0, 16 KOs) has fought all of his bouts in Ukraine and has faced obscure opposition. Chisora will be a big step up for him.

“I couldn’t get to the Klitschko brothers. They didn’t want to know about me,” said Chisora, who lost a lopsided decision challenging then-titleholder Vitali Klitschko in 2012. “Vitali retired and vacated the title, but good luck to him and his political ambitions. I gave him a hard 12 rounds when we met and next time ‘round he wouldn’t have come away with the title.

"Wladimir looks like he’ll be around for a little while longer and I’ve got unfinished business to settle with him, so I want to get to him and finish him off.

“So, for now, I’m facing the Klitschko clone in Rudenko. This man can punch, he’s gone the last five years knocking everybody out apart from one, but he’s not carrying on with that run against me.”