Boxer to have face reconstructed after leaving coma caused by bear attack
Stricken boxer Ilya Medvedev has made a public appearance following a bear attack that killed one of his companions and put him in an artificial coma. The 24-year-old will now reportedly have facial reconstruction.
The original horror incident took place in October in Russia's Tyumen region.
According to reports at the time, Medvedev had to be taken to hospital by boat where he began recovering in a non-life-threatening condition with injuries to his head and limbs.
A 48-year-old on the trip was said to have been killed by the bear.
More than two months later, London 2012 Olympic gold medalist Egor Mekhontsev has dubbed Medvedev a "real hero" and shed light on both the attack and the progress the boxer has made.
Crazy news from Russia !Boxer Ilya Medvedev went on a fishing trip with 2 other fishermen, one of the fishermen got attacked by a bear and medvedev fought with the bear and stabbed the bear to death, Medvedev is currently in hospital in intensive care #boxingpic.twitter.com/nAGOxc9x0l— ⚜️ (@HH_boxing) October 21, 2021
"Many have read his story in the press of when he went fishing with two friends and met a bear that attacked the guys. The bear killed one fisherman right away, then took to our hero, Ilya Medvedev," Mekhontsev said.
"He was already under the bear and it mutilated him, trying to tear him apart. Ilya had very few chances to survive... he survived on his own and saved his friend.
"In his pocket, he fumbled for a knife while the bear tormented him, and stabbed the bear several times with the knife.
"As it turned out later, these were blows to the vital organs of the bear. The bear retreated and died not far from him."
Mekhontsev shared a photo of himself with Medvedev, who was standing next to him in a suit by a boxing ring. The operations he will undergo include plastic surgery facial reconstructions, according to RIA.
"Ilya made it to the hospital where he was put into a drug-induced coma, because the injuries were terrible," Mekhontsev explained.
"Now Ilya is conducting rehabilitation after the experience and preparing for further operations. [IBA boss] Umar Kremlev is helping him with this and will help him in his rehabilitation."
In the aftermath of the shocking attack, former heavyweight champion Nikolai Valuev claimed that the "reaction and dexterity" skills Medvedev had perfected in the squared circle saved him.
Mekhontsev clearly agrees, asking: "Now think: did boxing help him in this situation?
"Did his occupation help him to make, in one second, the only correct decision that saved the lives of two people?
"Personally, I am sure that boxing and the desire to live helped him make a decision with lightning speed and survive. Well done, Ilya Medvedev. A real fighter."
The Tyumen Boxing Federation also backed Medvedev on social media earlier this week while wishing him a happy birthday.
"We wish Ilya a speedy recovery, good health, good spirits and peace of mind," it said.