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Thursday, November 4, 2021

Chilemba-Silyagin Postponed Two Weeks

Isaac Chilemba's oft-postponed fight with Pavel Silyagin has been pushed back once again. It is now scheduled for November 26, still in Moscow, Russia for now.

Chilemba is no stranger to delays. He was originally scheduled to fight Fedor Chudinov in March of 2020 when covid-19 shut down the world and postponed the fight. In February of this year, Chilemba and Chudinov finally fought to a split draw.

Chilemba-Silyagin is turning into the Russian version of Teofimo Lopez-George Kambosos.

Lopez was supposed to fight Kambosos in June, but the fight was delayed when Lopez tested positive for covid-19. There was an August fight date that came and went. The fight was moved to a Monday, October 4, and then pushed back to October 16. The promotional company, Triller eventually defaulted and lost the right to stage the fight. Cletus Seldin took over the October 16 spot on the Triller card and shined.

George Kambosos's position as "mandatory challenger" for one of Lopez's alphabet organization belts is the only reason the fight wasn't scrapped along the way. There are four major alphabet organizations and Lopez owns four out of five of the belts. That's not a typo; one of them has two world champions, down from the four they had up until this summer.

Kambosos is a good fighter and deserves respect, but there is so much talent in and around the lightweight division, there really isn't any justification for him to be a mandatory challenger. The southpaw technician, Vasiliy Lomachenko, lost a close decision to Lopez last year in a fight that many thought was a draw. Then there's slick boxer Devin Haney, social media star Ryan Garcia, southpaw puncher Gervonta Davis, and Olympian Shakur Stevenson lurking. Such is boxing. Lopez-Kambosos is now scheduled for November 27.

Chilemba knows all about the bizarre business of boxing. He has been on the wrong side of many close decisions in the opponent's hometown and now he's dealing with the shenanigans with his upcoming fight date. This bout against Silyagin was originally scheduled for October 15. It was then moved to November 5. Then, it was pushed back to November 12.

Chilemba told The Times of Malawi, “Russia is under a complete lockdown due to an increase in covid cases, so the fight has been moved to November 26th.”

The Times reporter, Mphatso Malidadi, notes that the lockdown may only be confined to Russia's capital. Yesterday, a boxing card took place in Grozny, Chechnya, Russia in which Chechen warlord Ramzan Kadyrov enjoyed strawberries as he watched the fights.

Regardless, Chilemba is keeping his fingers crossed that the fight will happen. “I hope the lockdown won’t be extended, and we will be allowed to enter Russia," Chilemba said. "It is very frustrating. This is the fourth time the date has been changed. I am actually losing hope if it is going to happen this year at all.”

The Jewish Boxing Blog's preview of Chilemba-Silyagin can be viewed here.

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