The gatekeepers are former champs, holding the strap until someone dethrones them. They’re fighters who take fights on short notice for a paycheck.
Their phone is never silent as big time promoters are constantly calling for their services. They’re the backbone of boxing as, simply, the opponent.
Michael Sprott: The Berkshire, England fighter has a respectable resume. With a record of 42-22, he’s fought the best Europe has had to offer.
He lost out on the WBO Intercontinental title twice, to Matt Skeleton and Danny Williams. He was defeated by Kubrat Pulev for the IBF Intercontinental title.
He’s also faced Robert Helenius, Alexander Dimetrenko, Audley Harrison, Lamont Brewster and Ruslan Chagaez.
He did however, win the 14th edition of the Prize Fighter tournament. He was once a regular sparring partner for the Klitschko brothers. He’ll face rising contender Anthony Joshua next.
Rafal Jackiewicz: “Braveheart” is a native of Minsk Mazowiecki, Poland, he is also a 2-time European champ. He’s held both the EBU and EBU-EU Welterweight titles.
In 2009, he defeated Delvin Rodriguez for a crack at the IBF Welterweight title, against Jan Zaveck. It would be a rematch of a close, split decision loss in their first encounter. He would lose again, this time by majority decision
He lost a shot at the WBA Intercontinental title, getting stopped in six by current IBF Champion, Kell Brock.
He went 11 rounds with Leonard Bundu, the undefeated fighter who will face Keith Thurman next. Jackiewicz is scheduled to face Gianluca Branco for the EBU Welterweight title
Sergey Khomitsky: “The Ghost” hails from Minsk, Belarus. Khomitsky has competed in both the Middleweight and Super Middleweight divisions
He was defeated by Khoren Gevor for both the IBF and WBO intercontinental belts at 160. Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye defeated him for the IBF intercontinental belt at 168. Robert Stieglitz defeated him the WBO Intercontinental belt at 168
Khomitsky has also faced Martin Murray x2, Lukas Koneceny, Ryan Rhodes and Gennady Golovkin. His record currently stands at 29-11-3
Ignacio Mendoza: Mendoza is a resident of Vitona, Pais Vasco, Spain. He has a record of 39-9-2 with 23 KO’s.
In his first title bout, he was defeated by John Murray for the WBC Youth Title. Kevin Mitchell defeated him for the WBO Intercontinental strap, while Viktor Postol bested him for the WBO International strap. Khabib Allakhverdiev beat Mendoza for the WBA Fedelatin strap.
He also lost to ESPN’s Boxcino Lightweight tournament winner, Petr Petroz. He currently won the Spanish light welterweight title.
Geard Ajetovic: Residing in Germany, Ajetovic sports a 25-10-1 title. He competes on the Super Middleweight division.
He went the distance with Matthew Macklin for the WBO European Super Middleweight Title. He also lost out on the IBF International Title to Harry Simon.
Daniel Geale defeated Ajetovic for the IBO World Title. Ajetovic also went the distance with knockout artist, Dmitry Pirog.