Klitschko to defend titles in April

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iol spt feb3 Wladimir_Klitschko AFP Wladimir Klitschko will defend his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO heavyweight belts against Kubrat Pulev on Sept 9. Photo: Daniel Roland

Berlin – Boxing world champion Wladimir Klitschko will defend his heavyweight titles against Alex Leapai in Oberhausen, Germany, on April 26.

The 37-year-old Klitschko, current holder of the WBO, WBA and IBF heavyweight belts, will make a mandatory defence against the Australian who is fighting for a world title for the first time.

Leapai, 34, has won 30 of 37 fights, losing four and drawing three.

He defeated Denis Boytsov in November to earn the right to challenge for the titles and though aware Klitschko has a strong record (61-3), he remains confident in his ability to dethrone the champion.

“Everyone talks only about Wladimir's 61 victories, and how amazing he is. But I think only of his three defeats and that they were against opponents who can't punch as hard as me,” he said.

“I will beat Wladimir and it will not even be my hardest fight.” Klitschko last defended his titles in October, defeating Russian Alexander Povetkin on points in Moscow. – Sapa-dpa

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