Cleverly vs Kovalev: John David Jackson sees early night for Kovalev

Main Events

Kovalev's trainer doesn't anticipate any problems beating Nathan Cleverly next weekend.

Trainer John David Jackson isn't expecting much of a challenge for his fighter Sergey Kovalev next Saturday against Nathan Cleverly, when Kovalev travels to Cardiff, Wales, to challenge for Cleverly's WBO light heavyweight title.

Jackson, a former junior middleweight and middleweight titleholder himself, expects that no matter how it goes, Cleverly is in a no-win situation against a better fighter:

"Honestly speaking, I can't even rate Cleverly compared to the other world champions in the division, he hasn't earned the right yet to even be compared to them. "He's not even qualified to be ranked. It's difficult for Nathan, we'll take him to school and the way that he responds to losing to Kovalev will shape his career.

"We don't expect this fight to go much beyond three rounds, but if Nathan hangs in and Sergey has to box to beat him, it'll just delay the inevitable.

"If the fight is stopped early, Cleverly will be knocked out, if it goes to points he will lose, he can't win in this situation. On a round-by-round basis we'll show you Nathan's flaws one by one, no doubt."

Cleverly's father and trainer Vince Cleverly recently said he also expects the fight to end by knockout, but obviously going the other way, saying he's seen Kovalev's legs wobble against Gabriel Campillo and Cornelius White, and that Cleverly can finish the job where they did not.

Kovalev (21-0-1, 19 KO) has been absolutely wrecking opponents and building a bit of a name for himself, and Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach has expressed his admiration for Kovalev's skills, too. Cleverly (26-0, 12 KO) has not faced a serious contender since squeaking past Tony Bellew in 2011, easily defeating easy marks Tommy Karpency, Shawn Hawk, and Robin Krasniqi since then.

It's an interesting fight because neither of them has actually been tested. Sure, Campillo is a more credible fighter than the guys Cleverly has beaten (save for Bellew and maybe Karo Murat), but I do tend to agree with Vince Cleverly when he says that Campillo, a notorious slow starter, was perfect for Kovalev. So what more is there? Cornelius White and Lionell Thompson?

Someone's going to prove out next weekend, and someone isn't. It's really that simple, and that's why it's such a good fight.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bad Left Hook

You must be a member of Bad Left Hook to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bad Left Hook. You should read them.

Join Bad Left Hook

You must be a member of Bad Left Hook to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bad Left Hook. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.