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18 Feb, 2008 02:39

Russia and Ukraine to clash on Saturday

Ukraine's boxing champion Vladimir Klitschko and Russia's Sultan Ibragimov are set to fight it out for the world heavyweight unification belt. Klitschko has described the fight as a turning point in boxing history. The pair will meet on Saturday in Madiso

After elder brother Vitaly Klitschko's string of success as both amateur and pro, younger Vladimir didn't fail to catch up. In 1996 he punched and jabbed his way to Olympic gold in Atlanta, just days before both men turned professional and moved to Germany. Since then the Slavic duo have been storming up the rankings, securing one title after another.

Today Vitaly Klitschko is more often seen holding court in Kiev's political circles, while Vladimir is still in the ring, currently holding two championship belts at the same time – the IBF and the IBO versions.

In 12 years his thunderbolt punch knocked down as many as 44 boxers and won a nickname for Vladimir – Dr. Steelhammer. It's only been three times out of 52 that Klitschko junior's hand hasn't been raised by the referee. And despite the marred record,

Vladimir Zolotarev – the man who helped make the Ukrainian Olympic champion – believes his former trainee is immaculate. Well, almost.

“I think he has no weaknesses. He's still the strongest fighter I've seen. Actually wait a minute – yes, he's got one weakness – women. Vladimir loves women very much but is still looking for a wife,” he said.

Days before the historic unification bout with Russia's Sultan Ibragimov, Vladimir's managers closed his Florida training camp to the media.

His team says the fighter mustn't be distracted. And so experts are now speculating what ring-plan he has up his sleeve to deal with one of the most talented fighters in the boxing world.

Russia Today will be having Road-to-the-ring updates each day leading up to the Klitschko-Ibragimov fight. Keep watching!