Klitschko banking on heavyweight support

Posted at 10/24/2012 3:04 PM

BERLIN - World champion Wladimir Klitschko will have American heavyweight boxer Johnathon Banks in his corner for his November 10 bout against Poland's Mariusz Wach, it was revealed Tuesday.

Banks, who has a fight himself on November 17 in New Jersey, will replace Klitschko's coach Emanuel "Manny" Steward, who is recovering after a bowel operation, the world champion's manager Bernd Boente told SID, an AFP subsidiary.

"Wladimir is very impressed by Johnathon. He says Banks can read a fight and know what tactics should be applied. He'll be a very good coach one day," said Boente.

Banks, 30, is one of Klitschko's sparring partners, and will be ringside when the Ukrainian champion defends his WBA, WBO and IBF belts in Hamburg next month.

It is unclear how long the 68-year-old Steward will be unable to coach the world champion after surgery last month, but Boente was optimistic.

"We hope that Emanuel will be in Wladimir's corner again next year," he said, with Steward having trained former world champions Evander Holyfield of the USA and Britain's Lennox Lewis in the past.

At 2.02m tall and with a reach of 2.08m, Wach will present Klitschko with a sizeable challenge in Hamburg having yet to lose a professional fight with 15 KOs and 27 victories.

Klitschko suffered the last of his three defeats back in 2004 and enjoyed the 50th knock-out of his career against Tony Thompson in July to leave him with a record of 58 wins from his 61 professional bouts.

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