Kubrat Pulev

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Kubrat Pulev
Кубрат Пулев
Kubrat Pulev Smiling.jpg
Pulev in 2012
Real name Kubrat Venkov Pulev
Nickname(s) Kobrata ("The Cobra")
Rated at Heavyweight
Height 1.94 m (6 ft 4 in)
Reach 203 cm (80 in)
Nationality Bulgarian
Born (1981-05-04) 4 May 1981 (age 36)
Sofia, Bulgaria
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 26
Wins 25
Wins by KO 13
Losses 1

Kubrat Venkov Pulev (Bulgarian: Кубрат Венков Пулев; born 4 May 1981) is a Bulgarian professional boxer. He has held the European heavyweight title twice, from 2012 to 2013 and in 2016, and has challenged once for the unified world heavyweight title in 2014. As an amateur he won multiple medals at international tournaments, including gold at the 2008 European Championships and bronze at the 2005 World Championships, all in the super-heavyweight division.

Amateur career[edit]


In February 2002, Pulev won the Strandzha Cup, the oldest international boxing tournament in Europe, in his native Bulgaria. Pulev, who is nicknamed "The Cobra", beat Cuban world champion Odlanier Solís in the process. One month later, he lost a rematch to the Cuban at the Semifinal of the "Chemiepokal cup". He could not participate at the Euros 2002 in Perm after breaking his arm in sparring.

At the World Championships 2003, he lost again in the first round to Odlanier Solís 7:12.

At the European boxing championships 2004 in Pula he defeated world class Alexander Povernov (World Championships Bronze medalist 2005). Pulev did not qualify for the Olympics despite the fact that he won the last qualifying tournament in Gothenburg. He had to settle for the first reserve place because the heavyweight division consists of only 16 fighters participating in the Olympic Games (other weight divisions have 48–81).


Pulev beat Islam Timurziev at super-heavyweight at the Strandja Cup 2005. At the EU Championships he lost the final 18:24 to Italian southpaw Roberto Cammarelle. At the 2005 World Amateur Boxing Championships he won bronze, losing for the third time to Odlanier Solís 11:25.

In 2006, at the Chemiepokal he beat Vyacheslav Glazkov and Magomed Abdusalamov. He finished at third place at the European Championships in Plovdiv. After defeating Glazkov again he was easily beaten (RSCO) by former victim and eventual winner, Islam Timurziev of Russia.

In 2007. he won the Chemiepokal tournament and was regarded as one of the favorites at the 2007 World Amateur Boxing Championships, but had a bad draw and lost early to southpaw Olympic bronze medalist and eventual winner Roberto Cammarelle.

In 2008, he won the Strandja Cup once again beating PanAm Champion Robert Alfonso 19:9.

He beat Jaroslavas Jakšto and Marko Tomasović to qualify for the Olympics 2008. There he was upset in his first bout by young Colombian Óscar Rivas.[1]

In absence of Roberto Cammarelle, he beat Marko Tomasović, Roman Kapitonenko and Denis Sergeev to claim the European Championship.

At the 2009 World Amateur Boxing Championships he lost again to Roberto Cammarelle.

Professional career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Pulev turned professional, at the age of 28, in September 2009 at the Jahnsportforum in Neubrandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. He defeated Florian Benche via 2nd-round technical knockout. Pulev fought another three times in the next three months, winning them all. He ended his first professional year with 4 wins and no losses.

Career from 2012–2013[edit]

Pulev vs. Dimitrenko[edit]

On 5 May 2012, Pulev won the then-vacant EBU European Heavyweight Championship via an eleventh-round knockout of Alexander Dimitrenko.[2]

Pulev vs. Ustinov[edit]

On 29 September 2012, Pulev knocked out previously-undefeated Alexander Ustinov, who went down in the eleventh round of an International Boxing Federation (IBF) "eliminator" (match) to determine a new #1-ranked challenger for the IBF World Heavyweight Championship.[3]

By early-June 2013, the IBF had finally updated its heavyweight division rankings, making Pulev the official #1 contender for its heavyweight title.[4][5]

Pulev vs. Thompson[edit]

In August 2013, Pulev fought Tony Thompson in an additional and final title-shot eliminator in Germany, winning by unanimous decision.[6]

On 14 December 2013, Pulev defeated American Joey Abell in the fifth round by knockdown, remaining undefeated as a professional fighter.[7]

Career from 2014–2016[edit]

Pulev vs. Klitschko[edit]

On 15 November 2014, Pulev finally got his title-shot, challenging then-IBF (as well as WBA, WBO, and IBO) World Heavyweight Champion, Wladimir Klitschko at O2 World, Hamburg, Germany. Despite making a spirited effort, Pulev suffered three knockdowns en route to being knocked out in round five by a devastating Klitschko left hook. Afterwards, Pulev stated: "Wladimir is a really good opponent, but he was lucky. I want a rematch".[8]

Following his first professional defeat, Pulev took 11 months out, before returning to the ring on 17 October 2015 against 41-year-old journeyman George Arias (56-13, 42 KOs) in an 8-round bout. The fight was scheduled to take place at the DM-Arena in Karlsruhe, Baden-Württemberg. Pulev also announced that he would be working with German legendary coach Ulli Wegner.[9] The fight went the distance as Pulev won a unanimous decision with scores of 80-71, 80-71 and 79-73.[10][11]

His next fight took place in December 2015 against American journeyman and former USBA heavyweight champion Maurice Harris, the fight last 100 seconds as Pulev knocked Harris down and out.[12][13]

Pulev vs. Chisora[edit]

On 7 May 2016, Pulev faced fellow former European champion and world title challenger Dereck Chisora (25-5, 17 KOs), in an IBF title eliminator for the vacant European heavyweight title at the Barclaycard Arena in Hamburg. Despite what had seemed a fairly comfortable points win for Pulev, which saw him control the fight behind the jab, the fight ended in a split decision, with two judges scoring it 118–110 and 116–112 in Pulev's favour while the third scored it 115–113 for Chisora.[14][15]

Pulev vs. Peter[edit]

Pulev fought a returning former heavyweight world champion Samuel Peter on 3 December 2016 at the Arena Armeec in Sofia, Bulgaria. It was the first time in his professional career fighting in his home country. In front of 15,000 at the Arena Armeec, Pulev defeated Peter via a 4th round RTD to win the vacant WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title. The fight was stopped after round three when Peter was forced to retire after dislocating his right shoulder.[16]

Career from 2017– (Present)[edit]

Pulev vs. Johnson[edit]

On March 21, 2017 Team Sauerland announced that Pulev would once again return to the Arena Armeec in Sofia, Bulgaria against another returning boxer, 37 year old former world title challenger Kevin Johnson (30-7-1, 14 KOs) of the United States. Johnson made a return to boxing, following his first knockout loss to Anthony Joshua in 2015, on March 11 in an eight-round unanimous decision win against Jamal Woods. The fight took place on April 28, 2017.[17] The fight went 12 rounds, but inflicted with foul play. Pulev controlled all the rounds winning 120-108 and 120-108 on two judges cards and 119-109 on the third judges card. Pulev got away with rabbit punching throughout the fight. In round 8, referee Terry O’Connor warned Pulev, however he continued to do so. Johnson fought on the back foot, although he hit Pulev with some clean shots, it wasn't enough to win the rounds.[18] The win kept Pulev in line for a future IBF world title shot, winning his fifth consecutive fight since his sole loss to Wladimir Klitschko and also retaining his WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title.[19][20]

Professional boxing record[edit]

Professional record summary
26 fights 25 wins 1 loss
By knockout 13 1
By decision 11 0
By disqualification 1 0
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
26 Win 25–1 United States Kevin Johnson UD 12 28 Apr 2017 Bulgaria Arena Armeec, Sofia, Bulgaria Retained WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title
25 Win 24–1 Nigeria Samuel Peter RTD 3 (12), 3:00 3 Dec 2016 Bulgaria Arena Armeec, Sofia, Bulgaria Won vacant WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title
24 Win 23–1 United Kingdom Dereck Chisora SD 12 7 May 2016 Germany Barclaycard Arena, Hamburg, Germany Won vacant European heavyweight title
23 Win 22–1 United States Maurice Harris KO 1 (8), 1:59 5 Dec 2015 Germany Inselparkhalle Wilhelmsburg, Hamburg, Germany
22 Win 21–1 Brazil George Arias UD 8 17 Oct 2015 Germany Max-Schmeling-Halle, Berlin, Germany
21 Loss 20–1 Ukraine Wladimir Klitschko KO 5 (12), 2:11 15 Nov 2014 Germany O2 World, Hamburg, Germany For IBF, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles
20 Win 20–0 Croatia Ivica Perkovic RTD 3 (8), 3:00 5 Apr 2014 Germany StadtHalle, Rostock, Germany
19 Win 19–0 United States Joey Abell RTD 4 (12), 3:00 14 Dec 2013 Germany Jahnsportforum, Neubrandenburg, Germany Retained IBF International heavyweight title
18 Win 18–0 United States Tony Thompson UD 12 24 Aug 2013 Germany Sport Center, Schwerin, Germany Retained IBF International heavyweight title
17 Win 17–0 Belarus Alexander Ustinov KO 11 (12), 1:28 29 Sep 2012 Germany Alsterdorfer Sporthalle, Hamburg, Germany Retained IBF International and European heavyweight titles
16 Win 16–0 Germany Alexander Dimitrenko KO 11 (12), 2:59 5 May 2012 Germany Messe, Erfurt, Germany Retained IBF International heavyweight title;
Won vacant European heavyweight title
15 Win 15–0 United Kingdom Michael Sprott RTD 9 (12), 3:00 14 Jan 2012 Germany Baden-Arena, Offenburg, Germany Retained IBF International heavyweight title
14 Win 14–0 United States Travis Walker UD 12 22 Oct 2011 Germany Arena Ludwigsburg, Ludwigsburg, Germany Won vacant IBF International heavyweight title
13 Win 13–0 Ukraine Maksym Pediura UD 8 16 Jul 2011 Germany Olympia Eishalle, Munich, Germany
12 Win 12–0 United States Derric Rossy TKO 5 (8), 2:15 7 May 2011 Denmark Koncerthuset, Copenhagen, Denmark
11 Win 11–0 Ukraine Yaroslav Zavorotnyi UD 8 12 Feb 2011 Denmark MCH Arena, Herning, Denmark
10 Win 10–0 Italy Paolo Vidoz UD 8 18 Dec 2010 Germany Max-Schmeling-Halle, Berlin, Germany
9 Win 9–0 United States Dominick Guinn UD 8 30 Oct 2010 Germany StadtHalle, Rostock, Germany
8 Win 8–0 Russia Evgeny Orlov DQ 7 (8), 0:16 1 May 2010 Germany Weser-Ems-Halle, Oldenburg, Germany Orlov disqualified for rabbit punching
7 Win 7–0 United States Danny Batchelder TKO 2 (8), 0:45 13 Mar 2010 Germany Max-Schmeling-Halle, Berlin, Germany
6 Win 6–0 France Isossa Mondo RTD 3 (8), 3:00 20 Feb 2010 Belgium Hall omnisports "La Préalle", Liège, Belgium
5 Win 5–0 United Kingdom Matt Skelton KO 4 (8), 2:14 30 Jan 2010 Germany Jahnsportforum, Neubrandenburg, Germany
4 Win 4–0 United States Zack Page UD 6 5 Dec 2009 Germany Arena Ludwigsburg, Ludwigsburg, Germany
3 Win 3–0 Nigeria Gbenga Oloukun UD 6 7 Nov 2009 Germany Nuremberg Arena, Nuremberg, Germany
2 Win 2–0 Turkey Serdar Uysal TKO 4 (4), 0:56 17 Oct 2009 Germany O2 World, Berlin, Germany
1 Win 1–0 Romania Florian Benche TKO 2 (4), 2:05 19 Sep 2009 Germany Jahnsportforum, Neubrandenburg, Germany Professional debut


Pulev has turned down lucrative financial offers to represent Germany, viewing it as a matter of principle not to change his national allegiance.[21][22]


  1. ^ "Medallists by weight category" (PDF). AIBA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 September 2009. Retrieved 16 November 2008. 
  2. ^ Dimitrenko vs Pulev Results: Kubrat Pulev Knocks Out Exhausted Dimitrenko in 11. Bad Left Hook (5 May 2012).
  3. ^ Alexey Sukachev and Per Ake Persson (29 September 2012) Kubrat Pulev Knocks Out Alexander Ustinov, Culcay Wins – Boxing News. Boxingscene.com. Retrieved on 9 October 2013.
  4. ^ Bg Daily News – Kubrat Pulev is number 1 in IBF ratings. Bg-daily-news.eu (7 May 2013). Retrieved on 9 October 2013.
  5. ^ IBF. Ibf-usba-boxing.com. Retrieved on 9 October 2013.
  6. ^ Kubrat Pulev defeats Tony Thompson via U.D.. GiveMeSport (26 August 2013). Retrieved on 9 October 2013.
  7. ^ Braehmer defeats Oliveira; Pulev stops Abell. Boxingnews24.com (14 December 2013). Retrieved on 2016-12-04.
  8. ^ Wladimir Klitschko retains title again. Espn.go.com (15 November 2014). Retrieved on 2016-12-04.
  9. ^ "Kubrat Pulev-George Arias is Set For October 17th - Boxing News". www.boxingscene.com. Retrieved 2017-05-01. 
  10. ^ Ivelina Raikovska (2015-10-18), Kubrat Pulev vs George Arias, retrieved 2017-05-01 
  11. ^ "Boxing results – Wladimir Klitschko-Kubrat Pulev - Boxing News". Boxing News. 2014-11-15. Retrieved 2017-05-01. 
  12. ^ http://m3web.bg, M3 Web -. "Bulgaria's Kubrat Pulev Knocks Out Maurice Harris in 100 Seconds - Novinite.com - Sofia News Agency". Retrieved 2017-05-01. 
  13. ^ Lys Alexandrov (2015-12-05), Kubrat Pulev vs Maurice Harris 05 12 2015, retrieved 2017-05-01 
  14. ^ "Pulev beats Chisora to close in on Joshua bout". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2017-05-01. 
  15. ^ "Pulev dominates, but only gets split decision win". Bad Left Hook. 2016-05-07. Retrieved 2017-05-01. 
  16. ^ "Pulev batter and stops Peter in four rounds". Boxing Scene. December 3, 2016. Retrieved December 4, 2016. 
  17. ^ "Bulgaria's Pulev gets 2nd straight fight at home". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2017-04-29. 
  18. ^ Space Science (2017-04-28), Kubrat Pulev vs Kevin Johnson Full Match 2017 Кубрат Пулев vs. Кевин Джонсън, retrieved 2017-04-29 
  19. ^ "Kubrat Pulev Defeats Kevin Johnson, Eyes Joshua-Klitschko Winner - Boxing News". www.boxingscene.com. Retrieved 2017-04-29. 
  20. ^ Jay, Phil D. "Kubrat Pulev dominates Kevin Johnson in Sofia, awaits Joshua v Klitschko winner". WBN - World Boxing News. Retrieved 2017-04-29. 
  21. ^ "Кубрат отказал милиони от Германия, няма как да играe за друга държава". topsport.bg. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  22. ^ "Кобрата: време е Кличко пак да бъде нокаутиран". topsport.bg. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Regional boxing titles
Title last held by
Tomasz Adamek
IBF International heavyweight champion
22 October 2011 – November 2014
Title next held by
Artur Szpilka
Title last held by
Robert Helenius
European heavyweight champion
5 May 2012 – August 2013
Title next held by
Dereck Chisora
European heavyweight champion
7 May 2016 – 21 November 2016
Title last held by
Luis Ortiz
WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight champion
3 December 2016 – present