Wladimir Klitschko confirms May defence of heavyweight titles against Francesco Pianeta
Last Updated: March 5, 2013 10:31am
Wladimir Klischko: Sparred with Pianeta last year
Wladimir Klitschko has confirmed he will defend his titles against Italian Francesco Pianeta in May.
The younger Klitschko, who holds the IBF, WBA and WBO belts, returns to the ring in Mannheim on 4 May - almost six months after a unanimous points victory over Mariusz Wach.
His latest opponent is a 28-year-old and former sparring partner with 28 wins and one draw on a career record featuring no defeats but few big names.
A 47-year-old Oliver McCall was among Pianeta's most recent victims while England's Matt Skelton - hampered by a hand injury - was stopped in eight in 2009.
Pianeta will climb through the ropes as a rank outsider, but he said: "I was briefly Klitschko's sparring partner last year and I noted where his weaknesses are and how best to exploit them.
"I understand many see me as an outsider and that is fine but I will knock Klitschko out and turn the world of boxing on its head."
Klitschko said: "I have a lot of respect for Pianeta because he is young and has a big fighting spirit."