Chinese boxer Xu ready to defend WBA title for the third time

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China's Xu Can (Rear) competes with United States challenger Manny Robles III in Indio, the U.S., Nov. 23, 2019. China's first World Boxing Association (WBA) champion Xu Can succeeded in defending his WBA featherweight title after defeating Manny Robles III on Saturday night in California. (Xinhua/Li Ying)

Chinese boxer Xu Can is determined to defend his WBA featherweight title for the third time as the 27-year-old is going to lock horns with British champion Leigh Wood in Brentwood, England on Saturday.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Xu hasn't fought since defending his title for the second time in November, 2019. He previously set up a clash with American fighter Emilio Sanchez in June in Los Angeles, but the match fell through due to broadcasting issues.

In January 2019, Xu won the WBA title by defeating reigning champion Jesus Rojas of Puerto Rico with unanimous decision in Houston, the United States. Then he achieved two successful defences of the title later the same year.

Ahead of his first fight in the UK, Xu was confident that he could bring his belt back home. "I will bring the victory back to my family and my country," said Xu.

Wood was highly motivated to beat Xu on home soil and the heavy puncher even believed that he could win the fight by KO the defending champion.

But Xu just responded to the British champion in a mild tone that "boxing is about how to fight but not how to talk".

The fight between Xu and Wood will be the main fight of Saturday evening after WBA Continental welterweight champion Conor Benn tested positive for COVID-19 and his fight against Adrian Granados was suspended.

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