Prograis’ coach: "Relikh is tough as nails" | World Boxing Super Series
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Prograis’ coach: "Relikh is tough as nails"

16th, December 2018

The man in Regis Prograis’ corner, Bobby Benton, talks with great respect about upcoming semi-final opponent Kiryl Relikh.

“Look at this tournament,” said Benson. “Everybody talked about Yigit like he was nothing and he gave Baranchyk a really tough fight. Everybody in this tournament is coming to win. Relikh is definitely tough, he is tough as nails, he comes right at you. So we’ll see what happens,” said the experienced coach who believes the ‘sky is the limit’ for his fighter.

29-year-old Regis Prograis advanced to the 140 lb Ali Trophy semi-final by beating Terry Flanagan convincingly via a unanimous points decision in New Orleans on October 27. The judges scored it 119-108, 118-109, 117-110 in favour of the ‘Rougarou’.

“I think Regis fought the perfect fight against Flanagan,” said Benson. “He fought smart. Honestly, I gave Flanagan one round. The first six rounds were a clinic and when Flanagan started to flatten out we started to take it to him. And that was really the plan for the start and Regis executed it perfectly.”

Prograis tried to finish the bout in round eight when he caught Flanagan with a crushing straight left hand and dropped his hard-fighting opponent for the first time in his career. ‘Turbo’ came back but the New Orleanian controlled the remainder of the fight and cruised to his first ever 12 round decision.

“It was fun to fight 12 rounds for the first time,” said Prograis (23-0, 19 KOs). “I enjoyed myself. I do it in the gym so it is only a few people in the world that really knows what I can really do. I know exactly what I can do.”

The WBC Interim Champion is promising his fans that he can become even better.

“Against Flanagan I went and I had fun,” said the 140 lb tournament number one seed. “For me, boxing is to have fun. It was not like I had to dig deep down. I went out and I played around. I had fun, I was smiling, I was laughing, I was talking to him in there, I went to the crowd and told everybody to stand up. 

“People can still expect me to keep getting better, keep doing different and more and more things. I can basically do everything; I am not just a power puncher, I am not just a boxer. I can do so many different things. I can change style whenever I need to.”

Dates and venues for next year’s sensational semi-finals will be announced soon.

WBSS Season 2 Semi-Finals:

Bantamweight

  • Nonito Donaire vs Zolani Tete
  • Naoya Inoue vs Emmanuel Rodriguez

Super-Lightweight

  • Regis Prograis vs Kiryl Relikh
  • Josh Taylor vs Ivan Baranchyk

Cruiserweight

  • Mairis Briedis vs Krzysztof Glowacki
  • Yunier Dorticos vs Andrew Tabiti