In the early hours of Sunday morning there is a treat for boxing fans on Sky Sports 1 as Andre Ward meets Sergey Kovalev for the second time at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, having beaten the Russian courtesy of a controversial points decision last November.
The Ring magazine rates the two light heavyweights as the two best pound-for-pound fighters in the world and there was little to choose between them last time around, even if Ward, who had been knocked down in the 2nd round, was recognised as the 114-113 winner by all three judges – all Americans, contributing to the feeling in Kovalev’s camp that he was hard done by.
Ward, who has won all 31 of his professional bouts, is the favourite for the re-match, which has been billed as “No Excuses” – with Betfair offering stand-out odds of 8/11.
The American is widely regarded as the better all-round fighter, but Kovalev packs a mighty punch and having put his opponent on the canvas last time there’s no doubt he has a big chance. Bet365 and BetVictor are offering the best price of 13/10, while the same two firms, plus Paddy Power, are quoting 4/1 that the Russian wins by KO.