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Dmitry Bivol wants to End 5½-Year Knockout Drought in Riyadh

Dmitry Bivol, the long-reigning WBA light heavyweight champion, is gearing up to break his 5½-year knockout dry spell as he prepares to defend his title against England’s Lyndon Arthur on Saturday night in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Bivol's last knockout victory dates back to March 2018 when he defeated Cuban contender Sullivan Barrera. Since then, he has claimed victory in his last eight 12-round bouts by unanimous decision. However, a lingering hand injury has hampered his ability to deliver knockout blows, prompting him to undergo surgery in April to address the issue.

"The feeling is the same, but I’m more confident with this [hand] now than before," said Bivol . "Because before it was like I wasn’t confident with my hand, but now I’m much more confident in it."

The 33-year-old champion, who boasts a record of 21-0 with 11 knockouts, will face a tough challenge in Arthur, who holds a record of 23-1 with 16 knockouts. Despite being installed as a 25-1 favorite by DraftKings sportsbook, Bivol is not underestimating his opponent's abilities.

"He has a good jab, he’s a good counterpuncher with his straight right hand and uppercut," Bivol said of Arthur. "He moves good and he’s from the English boxing school. This is a good chance for me to check my skills against this guy."

Bivol's last fight was in November 2022, where he defeated Mexican southpaw Gilberto Ramirez. Following a 13-month layoff, Bivol feels refreshed and mentally prepared for the upcoming challenge.

"I feel like I’m mentally much better, much more fresh, and my body is better now because last year was very busy for me," Bivol stated.

As he prepares to step back into the ring, Bivol is confident that his surgery and extended break have set the stage for a triumphant return to knockout form.


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