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Bulgarian boxer dies while fighting under cousin’s identity

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Boris Stanchov, the deceased, had been using his cousin Isus’ ID and fighting under his name

Bulgarian supporters holds a giant Bulga Photo credit should read ARIS MESSINIS/AFP/Getty Images

The news broke earlier today that 21-year-old Bulgarian boxer Isus Velichkov died following a first-round TKO loss to Ardit Murja. As the boxing world mourned another in the growing pile of tragedies in this sport, a bizarre detail emerged: it wasn’t Isus in the ring. The real Isus, very much alive, revealed afterwards that his cousin Boris Stanchov had been using his ID and fighting under his name for the past year with Velichkov’s consent.

TopSport.bg soon discovered further details. Stanchov, who stumbled back and collapsed in a delayed reaction following a jab, reportedly died of a heart attack, suggesting that he had an existent medical condition before stepping into the ring. His manager claims he had no clue of the deception despite Boris reportedly looking nothing like the man he was pretending to be. Only Isus and Stanchov’s coach appeared to be in on the scheme, which Boris said was to ensure that he had no losses on his own record.

Stanchov went 0-6 as Velichkov before losing his life this past Saturday. If he was also using Velichkov’s medicals, that would explain how he was permitted to step into the ring despite being in no condition to do so.

We wish Stanchov’s family the best during this time and hope that those who allowed this to happen are dealt with appropriately.