After Canelo Alvarez's previous good boxing fight two months ago, the Mexican is back and he intends to become the super middleweight champion in 2021. However, what he needs to do first is to pass the obligatory challenge of Turkish fighter Avni Yildirim.
The defending champion Alvarez is the major favorite of the fight so he needs to be mindful of potential and unwanted slip if he underestimates the power of Yildirim. A disruptive defeat will scupper his whole mission and bring him less ranking points by the media.
On Saturday, February 27, the battle card of Canelo Alvarez vs Avni Yildirim will commence from 10:00 PM (ET). But first, let's take a closer and detailed look at Alvarez's opponent, Yildirim.
Avni Yildirim: Who is Canelo Alvarez next opponent?
The 29-year-old Yildirim, who was born on August 5, 1991, and has lived in Turkey ever since his birth, is a former prolific amateur, managing a record of 120-12 in his country. He became their national champion five times. He also won bronze in the Mediterranean Championships and featured for Turkey at the 2013 Kazakhstan World Championships.
There, he lost in the second round. However, that defeat inspired him to become a professional boxer. Yildirim made his professional debut on March 22, 2014, when he won by points against Davit Ribakoni. It was a sign of a great start of Yildirim's career, having gone on an outstanding run of 16-0, 10 of those won by knockouts.
Then he joined the World Boxing Super Series for the first season where, in October 2017, he fought Chris Eubank Jr. in the opening fight. Eubank dominated the Turk with pace and strength in the third round and gave Yildirim his first professional loss. The upset only improved Avni, who then managed five successive triumphs over the course of 11 months only to prepare to face Anthony Dirrell for the WBC title while took place in February 2019.
Yildirim didn't get off to a great start, but he improved significantly in the second half of the fight. However, eventually, he lost the fight due to a technical decision after he unintentionally headbutted Dirrell, causing the American boxer to suffer a cut. Yildirim took the points, but that still didn't help him to win.
Thus, Avni Yildirim's current fighting record stands at 21 wins, 2 defeats, and 0 draws. 12 out of the 21 victories have happened after a knockout, helping his current knockout ratio stand at 57%. He suffered a knockout defeat only once of the two times he has lost so far. He has played 132 rounds in the ring, meaning that his professional battles last an average of 5.7 rounds. He uses a normal tradition of battling, meaning he prefers to fights with his right hand as his control hand.