Former heavyweight world champion Nikolai Valuev, the 7ft giant who was famously beaten by David Haye, reveals he was drafted to fight in Vladimir Putin’s Russian army…and he plans to enlist in the war next week in Ukraine
- Nikolai Valuev has been called up to fight in Vladimir Putin’s Russian army
- Valuev is a former two-time heavyweight champion who lost to David Haye
- He retired more than ten years ago, but is now serving in the Russian army
- He has said he will enlist next week amid his country’s conflict with Ukraine
Former world heavyweight champion Nikolai Valuev has revealed he has been drafted up to fight for Vladimir Putin’s Russian army in Ukraine.
A two-time WBA title holder, Valuev is the tallest and heaviest world champion ever, standing over seven feet tall and weighing over 23 bricks in his fighting days. He famously fought David Haye in 2009, losing by majority vote to the Briton.
That turned out to be his last fight, and two years later he switched to politics to become an MP in Putin’s United Russia Party. He has now explained that he has been drafted into the military and plans to enlist next week.
Russian Nikolai Valuev is the tallest and heaviest world champion ever in boxing
Valuev has revealed he has been drafted to fight in Vladimir Putin’s Russian army
“In my opinion, everyone has received a subpoena, I also received a subpoena,” Valuev told Russian outlet Izvestia.
‘Shall i go? Of course I’m going to the recruiting office now.
‘My colleagues [fellow MPs] are good, they were registered for military service in the Duma and were subpoenaed here, but I have to go home.
“I was summoned just before my trip to Donbas and I was not at home. I will definitely report to the recruitment office next week.’
Valuev was treated for “severe bone and joint problems” in 2010 and then underwent surgery that resulted in him being medically advised to take time off from his boxing career.
Despite these difficulties, he is still drafted into the military and has stated that he will serve his country.
Valuev was defeated by David Haye in his last fight as a professional boxer in 2009
The 49-year-old may have retired from boxing for over a decade, but he’s still been in the spotlight ever since.
In 2013, it was revealed that he was hunting the real Bigfoot in Siberia, while Channel 4 was running a documentary about his expedition called Bigfoot Files. Valuev could not find the mythical creature.
He is not the only ex-athlete to serve the Russian army during the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
Earlier this week, it was announced that former Everton footballer Diniyar Bilyaletdinov has also been drafted to fight in the Russian armed forces, just a week after Putin announced a partial military mobilization.