Golovkin eyes complete set of middleweight belts

Gennady Golovkin punching Kell Brook during their WBC-IBF middleweight title fight on Saturday. Brook's camp threw in the towel.
Gennady Golovkin punching Kell Brook during their WBC-IBF middleweight title fight on Saturday. Brook's camp threw in the towel.PHOTO: ACTION IMAGES

LONDON • The world's top-ranked middleweight boxer Gennady Golovkin wants another fight in Britain after stopping Kell Brook and targeting a unification bout with Billy Joe Saunders.

Golovkin retained his World Boxing Council (WBC) and International Boxing Federation (IBF) titles with a fifth-round stoppage at London's O2 Arena on Saturday.

The Kazakh's punishingly accurate blows took their toll on Brook, whose corner threw in the towel.

Brook, 30, was taken to hospital to be treated for a suspected fracture of his right eye socket.

Golovkin, whose World Boxing Association (WBA) belt was not on the line, now wants to fight Brook's fellow Briton and World Boxing Organisation (WBO) champion Saunders before moving on to Mexican Saul "Canelo" Alvarez .

Saunders has the only world middleweight belt not held by Golovkin, who made Brook his third British victim after Martin Murray and Matt Macklin.

"First of all, Billy Joe Saunders and then Canelo," Golovkin, 34, told a news conference.

A fight against Saunders could happen late this year or early next year, though a mandatory WBA defence could delay those plans.

"My goal is to hold all the belts in the middleweight division. I would like Billy Joe Saunders first of all because he has the WBO belt. I would absolutely come back to the UK to fight," said Golovkin.

His promoter Tom Loeffler cautioned that the United States-based Kazakhstan boxer may have to fight American Danny Jacobs in a WBA mandatory defence.

"If we can't make the Daniel Jacobs fight then maybe we do a unification fight," Loeffler said. "We tried to make that (Saunders) fight before in the UK and it didn't go very far. Maybe they will see the reaction and there will be more of an incentive to get in the ring.

"Gennady is open to fight anyone. The WBA is going to order a mandatory with Danny Jacobs, so we will see how that goes. Hopefully we can make it."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 12, 2016, with the headline 'Golovkin eyes complete set of middleweight belts'. Print Edition | Subscribe