Rances Barthelemy vs Kiryl Relikh Preview March 10th
The vacant WBA Super Lightweight Title is on the line this Saturday, March 10th at Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio, Texas as unbeaten Rances Barthelemy of Cuba takes on Kiryl Relikh of Belarus. The 12-rounder can be seen live in America on Showtime while Canadian fans can catch it on TSN 1 and 5. These two met last May with Barthelemy winning a 12-round unanimous decision. Barthelemy was down in the fifth round and Relikh down in the eighth. Barthelemy is a former IBF World Lightweight Champion who won the vacant title with a win over Denis Shafikov in December 2015 and defended it once against Mickey Bey eight months later.
Barthelemy vs Relikh Betting Odds
- Kiryl Relikh +165
- Rances Barthelemy -190
The 31-year-old Barthelemy is also a former IBF Super Featherweight Champion and he’ll climb through the ring ropes with a perfect record of 26-0 along with 13 Kos. Barthelemy, who now resides in Las Vegas, stands 5-feet-11-inches tall with a wingspan of 73 inches. The Cuban won the Super Featherweight title with a unanimous decision over Argenis Mendez in July of 2014 and then defended it with a wide unanimous decision over Fernando David Saucedo before moving up in weight. He’s also beaten Angino Perez, Antonio DeMarco and Arash Usmanee.
As far as experience goes, Barthelemy has fought 147 rounds since turning pro in 2009 after enjoying a fine amateur career. He’s scored his share of knockdowns over the years, but isn’t really known as a heavy hitter as his current knockout ratio stands at 50 per cent. It would appear that Barthelemy will try to establish his jab right from the start and that will make it difficult for Relikh to get close to him. However, if Relikh can get in range by evading the jab, then he’ll need to punish Barthelemy to the body and try to wear him down as much as possible.
The 28-year-old Relikh will climb into the ring with a record of 21-2 along with 19 Kos. He’s just over 5-feet-9-inches tall with a 67.5-inch reach, meaning he gives up 1.5 inches in height and 5.5 inches in reach. He’s definitely a heavy puncher with 19 Kos in his 21 wins for a knockout ratio of 83 per cent. In addition, his stoppage wins usually don’t last very long as he’s fought just 85 rounds since turning pro back in 2011. He’s fought a few times in western Europe, including a couple of times in the UK, but his earlier opponents are basically unknown by the average boxing fan.
Relikh stepped up in class in October, 2016 when he took on WBA Super Lightweight Champion Ricky Burns and lost a unanimous decision. He then lost his second bout in a row and the second of his career when Barthelemy decisioned him last year. Relikh likes to put the pressure on his opponents and move forward. He’s also a boxer who likes to work his opponents’ body. He’s got a pretty solid chin, but found Barthelemy an awkward puzzle to solve last spring.
Barthelemy will once again try to use his size and boxing skills to keep Relikh on the back foot as much as possible and make his opponent worry about covering up rather than launching a prolonged attack. If Relikh is going to win this bout it will likely be by a knockout. But considering the way the first fight panned out that’s going to be a tough task. I’m expecting Barthelemy to win the fight, but to be rocked a few times along the way.
Barthelemy’s size and boxing skills should be the difference.
Play: Barthelemy -190 @ BetOnline.ag
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