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Kell Brook v Sergey Rabchenko: Brook can succeed in last chance saloon

Cian Carroll | 3 March 2018

A win for Special K could put him back in the big time

Britain’s Kell Brook takes on Sergey Rabchenko for the vacant WBC Silver Super Welterweight title in Sheffield on Saturday night.

It will be Brook’s debut at 154lbs and his first fight since May 2017. That was another hard-hitting defeat to Errol Spence Jr. And that was off the back of an even more devastating defeat to Gennady Golovkin eight months earlier.

Can Brook get his career back on track against Rabchenko? There’s a number of intriguing factors to consider. The Coral News Team takes a closer look…

Can Brook handle the extra weight?

It’s the Sheffield fighter’s first attempt at super welterweight so there’s a slight case of the unknown here.

However, many boxing observers would argue this is Brook’s natural weight. Or at least the extra few pounds won’t be a hindrance to him.

The weight cut to make 147lbs was generally an issue for Brook, so a step-up to 154lbs, in theory, should suit him.

Have we seen the best of Special K?

One of the major questions surrounding Brook will be his reaction to those back-to-back defeats to GGG and Spence Jr.

They weren’t unexpected losses. Both opponents are elite fighters and bigger men than the Briton.

However, both losses were savage stoppages with Brook eventually overpowered. Will they have taken their toll on his body? He suffered eye socket injuries in both fights and could be vulnerable going into this.

How good is Rabchenko?

A number of years ago, Sergey Rabchenko was actually regarded as a very good fighter. The Belarusian was a former holder of this belt back in 2012.

However, at 32-years-old, his best days are likely to be well behind him. He lost on a split-decision to Anthony Mundine in 2014, and was then stopped by Anthony Harrison in July 2016.

He’s still a game opponent for Brook, though. He’ll stand and trade, and he’s got a good dig on him.

Predictions?

Even with a few question marks hanging over this fight, the Coral News Team can’t see past a Kell Brook win.

He should enjoy having an extra few pounds to play with. And he’s undeniably a more talented fighter than Rabchenko.

How this fight pans out will boil down to whether Brook has recovered psychologically from his previous two defeats.

However, if he wins this belt, which is reasonably regarded, it could put Brook back in contention for some major bouts.

There could be some nerves, though, in addition to Rabchenko’s durability. Brook to win by decision is 7/4.

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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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