Interview with APB’s Artem Chebotarev #APBIstanbul04 February 2016
Ahead of his APB title match in Istanbul on Saturday, AIBA caught up with Russia’s Artem Chebotarev to discover just how he is approaching his latest bout against long-term rival Adem Kilicci, how he will react to the partisan crowd in Turkey, and just what the Rio 2016 qualifier has in mind for the Olympic Games in August.
How have you approached your training before Saturday’s title match against Adem Kilicci?
I am training at full speed. I have just come back from an intense session at the Russian boxing team’s training camp, and I am getting ready to travel to Istanbul. I feel fully prepared and I am confident in my strengths.
You have boxed against Kilicci twice before and he has managed to come out victorious on both occasions. What is the plan for this match? Have you changed your strategy?
I do have a strategy against Kilicci, and of course I would rather not share it before the bout, but I will be working hard to get the belt. I have boxed Adem before and I know him well and he knows me well. Despite the fact that I lost the two previous matches against him they were both pretty close, and I would say that we are both at quite a similar level. I think I will be successful this time.
The match is taking place in Istanbul and there will be huge home support for Kilicci, how will that affect you?
Of course boxing in Istanbul he will have more support, the same would be the case if we boxed in Saratov, but I do hope that there will be some support for me and that the local crowd will be friendly. Support around you while you’re in the ring is very important, but nothing will affect me and I will go into the ring to win this fight.
A few of my friends will be coming to support me in Istanbul, so this will help too. When Mytrofanov was coming to Saratov to box against me, I even asked some of my friends to support him during the fight too as I know how important this kind of cheering can be for a boxer.
You have been very successful in APB against Ukraine’s Dmytro Mytrofanov and Romania’s Bogdan Juratoni. Will you try to use the same approach in this match?
This match will be different. It’s a longer distance and we will box for 12 rounds, so the tactics will be different for me. I am ready for a long and intense show of boxing.
You have had a tremendous career on the national and international level but what do you consider to be your biggest achievement so far?
AIBA Pro Boxing is of course the culmination of my career and the Championship belt is hugely important for me as a boxer. Like I said before, I will be fully focused to win this bout and nothing will stop me.
What would be your goal in Rio 2016 Olympic Games?
My main goal in Rio would of course be the gold medal. I have been preparing for such a long time and thanks to APB I have managed to compete against some of the key boxers in the world and I know the current World Champion Cuban boxers well. I have gained so much experience through APB that I would only be aiming for gold and I’m confident I would get it.