Check out Eric Armit’s comprehensive report in The Week In Boxing – September 12, 2017!
-Srisaket crushes Roman Gonzalez
-Olek Usyk kicks off the World Super Series of Boxing by kicking Marco Huck’s butt
-David Bermudez wins the vacant WBC super middle title
-Kevin Lerena wins vacant IBO cruiser title
-Juan Carlos Reveco wins IBF final eliminator to get a shot at Donnie Nietes
-Japanese star Naoya Inoue looks awesome as he destroys Antonio Nieves in his first fight in the USA
-Kanat Islam crushes previously unbeaten Brandon Cook
-Veteran Joey Abell tears up the script and flattens local fighter Krzys Zimnoch
Las Vegas, NV, USA: Super Middle: David Benavidez (19-0) W PTS 12 Ronald Gavril (18-2). Super Middle Caleb Plant (16-0) W PTS 10 Andrew Hernandez (16-3). Super Middle: J’Leon Love (23-1-1,1ND) TEC DRAW 8 Abraham Han (26-3-1). Light Heavy: Peter Quillin (33-1-1) W PTS 8 Johnson (22-22-3,1ND). Jeison Rosario (14-1) W KO 5 Salim Larbi (20-8-2).
Benavidez vs. Gavril
Benavidez wins the vacant WBC title with split decision over Gavril but has to climb off the floor in the last round for victory
Benavidez started out utilising his edge in reach to box on the outside but then began to throw straight rights. Gavril was cautious making good use of his own jab mainly to the body. Benavidez edged the round
Score 10-9 Benavidez
Gavril’s round. The Romanian worked hard with his jab slotting it though gaps in Benavidez’s defence and following up with quick combinations. Benavidez was loading up on his punches and not making use of his jab and was outworked.
Score 10-9 Gavril 19-19
This round also saw Gavril threading his punches through and around Benavidez’s guard. Benavidez started to really let his punches go and landed some heavy shots bringing blood from Gavril’s nose to take the round.
Score 10-9 Benavidez 29-28
After some good early work from Gavril Benavidez turned up the heat. He was scoring with clubbing rights to the head and left hooks to the body with Gavril under pressure. For no apparent reason at the end of the round Benavidez twice backed to the ropes and gestured for Gavril to do his worst and won the round clearly
Score 10-9 Benavidez 39-37
Official Scores 39-37, 39-37 for Benavidez, 39-37 for Gavril
Gavril was boxing smoothly focusing on the body and outworking Benavidez but did not have the power to turn that into dominance. Benavidez was throwing less but was scoring with the harder and more eye-catching punches including a left hook that was the best punch in the fight so far
Score 10-9 Benavidez 49-46
This was turning out to be a fast open and entertaining fight. Gavril continued to work the jab and fire quick burst of punches. Benavidez decided to do some showboating in this round instead of fighting. When he did throw punches his power was there but he did not do enough and gave the round away.
Score 10-9 Gavril 58-56
Benavidez pressed harder in this round. He was scoring with left hooks to the body and clubbing rights. Gavril was able to score in bursts but it was Benavidez round
Score 10-9 Benavidez 68-65
Gavril was busy, busy in this one. He was threading his jab through the high guard of Benavidez and banging well to the body. Benavidez only fought in spurts. He landed the harder punches but Gavril edged the round.
Score 10-9 Gavril 77-75
Official scores 79-73, 79-73 for Benavidez, 77-75 for Gavril
Another round for Gavril. He worked the jab and fired quick combinations with Benavidez only fighting in short spells ignoring his jab and just not throwing enough punches.
Score 10-9 Gavril 86-85
A big round for Benavidez. He was scoring with long hooks and straight rights and for the first time in the fight Gavril resorted to holding to smother Benavidez work and although continually firing back Gavril was under heavy pressure at the bell.
10-9 Benavidez 96-94
Benavidez round. He drove Gavril back with a series of hooks and uppercuts and continued to pound the Romanian’s body with left hooks and for a few moments Gavril was in deep water. However Benavidez was looking very tired and arm weary just really slugging not boxing.
Score 10-9 Benavidez ` 106-103
Benavidez was winning the round easily. Again he was forcing Gavril back banging home left hooks right uppercuts and straight rights. As they traded Benavidez landed a couple of hard punches to the head and Gavril countered with a left hook. Benavidez was wide open and the punch dumped him on his rump. Benavidez was up quickly and did not look badly hurt. He got a couple of extra seconds recovery time as Gavril had strayed out of the neutral corner and the referee stopped the count to send Gavril back. When the action resumed Benavidez got the better of some hectic exchanges and they ended up with some of the best action of the fight.
Score 10-8 Gavril 114-113
Official Scores: 117-111 and 116-111 for Benavidez and 116-111 for Gavril
Benavidez becomes the youngest of the current champion as he wins the title at the age of 20. This was his first twelve round fight and he tired badly at the end but was a deserving winner. The Phoenix fighter had only 15 amateur fights and turned pro at 16 with his early bouts being in Mexico as he could not fight as a pro in Arizona until he was 18. When he signed pro with Top Rank he was 17 and the youngest fighter to sign with them and he needed special dispensation from the Nevada Commission to fight there at 17. He is the brother of Jose the former undefeated interim WBA super light champion who also turned pro at 17 and also needed a special licence from Nevada. This is a tough division and Benavidez has slipped past the top fighters to get the title shot so still has to prove himself. Unlike Benavidez Gavril, 31 had a long and successful time as an amateur including competing at the World and European Championships. His other pro loss was an upset defeat against Elvin Ayala in 2015. He then won seven fights in a row none against rated fighters. Winning the NABF title saw him get a place in the WBC ratings but as he was ranked No 6 he was fortunate to get the title chance but he showed he belonged at this level.
Plant vs. Hernandez
“Sweet Hands” Plant gets wide unanimous decision over a game Hernandez who came in at eight days notice. Plant was in charge from the start. He had his jab working well and landed power shots in every round. He opened a cut under the left eye of Hernandez and it leaked blood throughout the fight. Whilst dominating the exchanges Plant was never really able to shake Hernandez and had to settle for winning every round. Scores 100-90 from all three judges. The 25-year-old from Tennessee is a former National Golden Gloves Champion but failed to make it through the final US Trials for the 2012 Olympics. He is rated IBF 11(9)/WBC 30 but is yet to face a name opponent. Hernandez, 31, was 9-2 in his last 11 fights.
Love vs. Han
This one ended as a technical majority draw after Han suffered a horrendous gash from a clash of heads. The fight was pretty ordinary. Love moved well and used angles to score early and Han worked his jab and seemed to have a slight edge going into the eighth round. When their heads clashed a wide gash opened immediately on Han’s forehead above his left eye. He was stunned and fell to the canvas with the injury already pouring blood and the fight was stopped immediately. One judge somehow had Love up at 79-73 but the other two had it 76-76 so a majority draw. Love, 29, is rebuilding after a shock third round kayo loss to Rogelio Medina in 2014 and coming in had scored five wins over modest opposition. He is rated IBF 9(7)/WBC 9. Han 32, suffered back-to-back split decision losses in 2015 to Sergio Mora and Fernando Guerrero and was inactive in 2016 but had returned with a low level win in March.
Quillin vs. Johnson
Quillin gets rocky welcome back from experienced Johnson before getting the decision. This was Quillin’s first fight since losing to Daniel Jacobs for the secondary WBA title in December 2015. Quillin showed some early rust and just when he seemed to be finding his way Johnson showed why there are a few upset wins in this record. He exploded a right on Quillin’s head near the end of the third that had Quillin floundering. Johnson landed more heavy punches but the bell went and Quillin survived. From there Quillin took over showering Johnson with hooks and uppercuts and came close to an inside the distance win but this time it was Johnson who survived. Scores 79-72, 79-73 and 78-74 all for Quillin. The 34-year-old “Kid Chocolate” from Chicago has a lot of catching up to do. It was a huge shock when he turned down a purse of almost $2 million to defend his WBO title against Matt Korobov and vacated the title. He tripped over in his return when he failed to make the weight in a challenge against Andy Lee for his old WBO title and then walked away from the ring for a while after being blown away in 85 seconds by Jacobs. Another suitcase another town for Johnson who came close to stopping WBO No 1 Jesse Hart last year.
Rosario vs. Larbi
Rosario is yet another fighter repairing his record and gets a useful win. The Dominican makes it eleven wins by KO/TKO as he puts Larbi down twice with body punches on his way to a knockout victory. Second win for Rosario since his sixth round stoppage loss against dangerous Nathan Gallimore in April. Rosario does not do distance fights. In his 15 contests he has 11 inside the distance wins, two wins by disqualification and the inside the distance loss to Gallimore so only one fight has gone the full scheduled of rounds. Frenchman Larbi lost to Lukas Konecny for the interim WBO title in 2012 but is now 4-6 since then.
General Alvear, Argentina: Fly: Juan Carlos Reveco (39-3) W PTS 12 Komgrich (22-5). Feather: Hector Sarmiento (14-0) W TKO 3 Sergio Priotti (28-22-2,1ND).
Reveco vs. Komgrich
Reveco wins wide unanimous decision over Thai Komgrich in an exciting gruelling battle. Reveco was giving away height and reach but boxed masterfully on the back foot. He had better movement and quicker hands and was threading home jabs and landing quick busts of hooks and uppercuts as the much slower Komgrich rolled forward. Reveco was doubling up on his jab and spearing Komgrich time and again with uppercuts. The Thai was just throwing one punch at a time and was a static target for Reveco’s fast, accurate counters. The Thai tried switching southpaw but over the first half of the fight nothing worked for him. Reveco is not a power puncher and as Komgrich finally stepped up his pace he was able to walk through Reveco’s punches and was doing a better job of cutting down the ring. Reveco continued to make Komgrich pay for every pace forward as he landed punch after punch through the porous guard of the Thai but the pressure was unrelenting and you have to feel the fight might have had a different ending if Komgrich had fought with this fire earlier. As it was he staged a storming last round but Reveco continued to box cleverly on the retreat and was a clear winner although the scores did not show how tough it was for the home town fighter over those late rounds. Scores 120-108, 118-110 and 117-111 all for Reveco with the last seeming a good reflection of the fight. The 34-year-old Reveco, a former holder of the secondary WBA title at light fly and flyweight was the highest rated fighter in the IBF flyweight division at No 3 (the first two spots were vacant) and Komgrich was No 4 so this win will allow Reveco to move into the No 1 spot as mandatory challenger to Donnie Nietes. Komgrich, 28, lost on points to Nietes for the vacant IBF title in his last fight in April so it won’t be easy for him to work his way to another title shot.
Sarmiento vs. Priotti
Sarmiento gets a lucky win. After a couple of even rounds Priotti put Sarmiento down in the third but injured his right hand and could not continue. The “Little Bird”, the Argentinian No 5, will rarely get a luckier win. Veteran Priotti, 37, need victory here as he was 1-8,1ND in his last 10 fights.
Santiago Del Estero, Argentina: Middle: Diego Diaz Gallardo (22-5-1) W RTD 8 Felipe Santos Pedroso (13-3). Gallardo retains his WBFederation title as Brazilian Pedroso retires after eight rounds. After a slow first round Gallardo did enough to edge the second. In the third Pedroso came to life and worked hard to take it and also had a good fourth. Gallardo had the better of the fifth forcing Pedroso to fight with his back to the ropes for much of the time. Gallardo took the sixth shaking Pedroso with a right hook but both tired and the pace slowed in the seventh. Gallardo finally decided the fight in the eighth. A huge right sent Pedroso reeling into a corner and he only just survived to the bell. Pedroso ‘s corner wanted to send him out for the ninth but the referee waived the fight over. The 37-year-old Gallardo fought with mixed fortunes until 2010 and then retired to train local boxers. He had a fight in 2013 but then retired again. He decided to give it one more try so had a fight in September 2016 and was then selected as a safe opponent to face the WBFederation champion Michel Mothmora in Martinique. He won the title on an eighth round stoppage becoming only the second fighter from Santiago del Estero to hold any version of a world title. Pedroso gets his second loss by KO/TKO having been stopped in four rounds by Ryota Murata in May last year.
Woden, Australia: Middle: David Toussaint (12-0) W TEC DEC 6 Liam Hutchinson (11-5-1). Light Heavy: Steve Lovett (16-2) W RTD 2 Aswin Cabuy (19-64-4).
Toussaint vs. Hutchinson
Fighting in front of his home fans Toussaint wins the vacant Australian title with technical decision over Hutchinson. Toussaint was well on his way to victory when a clash of heads in the sixth saw Hutchinson suffer a bad cut and the fight was stopped . It went to the cards with Toussaint winning the verdict. The Canberra southpaw has scored good wins over Junior Talipeau and Shane Mosley Jr. and former IBF champion Daniel Geale has tipped him as a future world champion. He deserved his success as he twice finished runner-up at the Australian Under-17 Championships and a 7-6 points loss at the Australian Senior Championships cost him his a chance of going to the London Olympics. His next fight will be on the undercard to Jeff Horn’s title defence against Gary Corcoran in Brisbane on 25 November. Second loss in challenges for the national title for Hutchinson who failed to lift the super welter title in a previous attempt.
Lovett vs. Cabuy
After two inside the distance losses Canberra’s Lovett returns home to make a fresh start. Cabuy was very much a non-threatening opponent and two round of punishment were enough for Cabuy to call it a night. Lovett had high hopes when he went to Houston to train under Ronnie Shields. Eight wins in a row earned him a world rating but inside the distance losses to Craig Baker and Lionell Thompson soured the experience so it is home again and win No 13 by KO/TKO for Lovett. Now 30 losses by KO/TKO for 42-year-old Indonesian Cabuy.
Carson, CA, USA: Super Fly: Srisaket (44-4-1) W KO 4 Roman Gonzalez (46-2). Super Fly: Naoya Inoue (14-0) W RTD 5 Antonio Nieves (17-2-2).Super Fly: Juan Francisco Estrada (36-2) W PTS 12 Carlos Cuadras (36-2-1). Bantam: Brian Viloria (38-5,2ND) W TKO 5 Miguel Cartagena (15-4-1).
Srisaket vs. Gonzalez
In a major shock Thai Srisaket retains the WBC title with crushing kayo win over Gonzalez. It was not a case of a lucky punch as from the first bell Srisaket threw and landed more punches before wrecking the former pound-for-pound favourite with two crushing rights.
Srisaket made a good start. He was letting his southpaw straight lefts go early with Gonzalez more cautious. They clashed heads and with memories of the bad cut he received in the first fight Gonzalez complained to the referee who gave Srisaket a warning. Srisaket continued to score with his lefts and clearly took the round
Score 10-9 Srisaket
Gonzalez opened the second in a more positive manner. He was moving in close and scoring with hooks. Srisaket fired back and it was Gonzalez who backed up and Srisaket again scored with his straight lefts. Gonzalez upped the pace in the second half of the round. Another clash of heads again had Gonzalez complaining to the referee. They traded punches to the bell in a close round which just went to Srisaket.
Score 10-9 Srisaket 20-18
There were worrying signs for Gonzalez in the third. Srisaket was outpunching the Nicaraguan constantly finding the target with southpaw lefts. He was constantly changing angles and getting the better of the exchanges with Gonzalez struggling to match the Thai both in power and accuracy.
Score 10-9 Srisaket 30-27
Srisaket scored early with quick combinations with Gonzalez not seeming able to block them. Srisaket threw another combination and as Gonzalez walked in the last punch of the combination, a short right to the chin, caught Gonzalez flush and he collapsed sideward to the floor. He got up at eight but looked very shaky and looked almost resigned to losing. He tried to punch his way out of trouble but Srisaket drove him back. Another series of four head punches which ended with a devastating right to the head put Gonzalez down flat on his back and the referee immediately signalled the end of the fight.
If you heard a tearing sound it was the plans for a Gonzalez vs. the winner of Estrada vs. Cuadras fight or Gonzalez vs. Inoue or Gonzalez vs. anyone being torn up. Srisaket was a better fighter than when he won a controversial decision over Gonzalez in March. He had superior movement superior speed and superior power. Gonzalez looked sluggish and slow and it was strange to see the Nicaraguan being the one to break from trading punches and backing off. It remains to be seen whether Srisaket will just take the place of Gonzalez in the scheme and as the Estrada vs. Cuadras fight was an eliminator the WBC will probably push for the Srisaket vs. Estrada fight to go on. Gonzalez, 30, seemed to age overnight and did not look the same fighter who had run up a 46-0 38 wins by KO/TKO record. He was hospitalised after the fight as a precaution and has said he will discuss with his family whether he will retire
Inoue vs. Nieves
In his first fight in the USA Inoue lives up to his “Monster” nickname as he dismantles and demolishes Nieves in an outstanding exhibition of speed and power. The 24-year-old Japanese star looked awesome but needs to face the Srisaket and Estrada level of opposition to prove his true worth.
Inoue easily took the round. He was stabbing out quick powerful jabs and landing with left hooks to the body and sweeping overhand rights. Nieves banged back a couple of times but was under pressure for most of the round.
Score 10-9 Inoue
Another dominant round for Inoue. His left jab was precise and powerful and he was also scoring with clubbing rights. Nievas had some success with his own jab and fired some good combinations but could not match the champion. As the round ended Inoue landed a vicious left hook to the body. Nievas stepped back obviously in pain and Inoue hammered him with two punches to the head and Nievas was badly staggered and in trouble. Inoue was looking to land more but he suddenly walked away thinking the bell had gone and Nievas survived.
Score 10-9 Inoue 20-18
In the third we were watching a hunt not a fight. Inoue tracked a retreating Nievas around the ring letting go his jab and mixing in long rights and left hooks to the body. Nieves stopped occasionally to throw a punch but there was conviction in his punches as he knew trading with Inoue was a very unwise course of action.
Score 10-9 30-27
I think Inoue sent he sent a poor avatar out for this one. For most of the round Inoue just danced prodded with his jab and handed the initiative to Nieves. That meant that Nieves had his best round so far. The real Inoue turned up for the last 30 seconds as he went after Nieves with bad intent but had left it too late in the round. It was close but even at half pace Inoue did enough to take the round
Score 10-9 Inoue 40-36
Inoue got down to serious business in this round. He stalked Nieves around the ring landing vicious rib bending hooks from both hands with Nieves in full survival mode. A left hook saw Nieves drop to his knees in agony. He was up at eight and Inoue drove him around the ring using almost exclusively his left hook to the body which he landed frequently and every one had Nievas wincing in pain.
Score 10-8 Inoue 50-44
A right to the ribs again had Nieves hurt early in the sixth. From there it was almost embarrassing. There is no way that Nieves wanted anymore of those body punches and he spent the rest of the round going back faster than Inoue could go forward. Inoue tried all sorts of ways to get Nieves to stand and fight or at least make a gesture. He continued to land rib bending left hooks to the body and it was a relief when Nieves retired at the end of the round in a fight was that had become an embarrassment for the challenger from Cleveland.
Score 10-8 Inoue 60-52
Inoue’s achievements are already remarkable. He is a two-division champion. He won the WBC light fly title in his sixth fight and the WBO title in his eighth fight. This is his sixth defence of the WBO title and he is already 9-0 in world title fights with 8 wins by KO/TKO. Not bad for a guy who failed to medal at the World Youth and World Senior Championships and went out in the Asian Qualifier for the 2012 Olympics. Inoue, Srisaket and Estrada perm any two from three and you have the makings of a classic fight. Nieves was never going to be much of a test. He entered the WBO ratings not because he beaten any quality fighters but because he won the WBO NABO title over a guy with a 9-1 record. When you add that the NABO title he had won was at bantamweight, that he had never fought under 115lbs, had lost his last fight and then did a side shuffle from No 7 bantam to No 7 super fly you get the typical ratings manipulation exercise. He showed some nice skills but was outclassed here.
Estrada vs. Cuadras
In a WBC eliminator Estrada gets wafer thin decision over Cuadras as he has to come from behind with a knockdown scored in the tenth round finally the difference between the fighters on the scorecards. From the first bell these two put on a high class exhibition of box-fighting. They both had their jab working and were throwing good combinations with Cuadras scoring with a right just before the bell which was the best punch so far and gave him the round. Cuadras ran the second round with his jab. He was constantly piercing Estrada’s guard and a right cross and a left hook from him were the punches of the round. Estrada was still struggling to get past the jab of Cuadras in the third and Cuadras was switching guards and also leaping in with left hooks to the body and long rights to the head. Estrada landed a couple of sharp punches late in the round but it was too little too late. Estrada finally began to connect in the fourth but he was still being outboxed and Cuadras did some showboating throwing his arms wide and doing a jig as he pocketed the fourth round. Estrada was having a little more success with each round but Cuadras was just too quick and too clever although his showboating and switching guards to no purpose were not helping him. Five rounds gone and five rounds for Cuadras. Suddenly in the sixth it was Estrada who was scoring with the jab and Cuadras looked ragged at times with the quality shots coming from Estrada to take the round. Cuadras went back to jabbing and moving over the first half of the seventh but was looking tired. Over the second half Estrada was getting closer and landed a head jarring left hook/right uppercut/straight right combination to take a close, exciting round. Cuadras moved a lot and threw a lot and landed more in the eighth but the harder eye-catching power shots were all coming from Estrada who just edged the round. He was closing the points difference with every round. Cuadras stopped the rot in the ninth. He gave a masterly exhibition of boxing on the back foot constantly slotting punches through Estrada’s guard and slipping or blocking Estrada’s replies to take the round clearly. Estrada needed to do something and quickly as he was running out of rounds. He achieved that in the tenth as he shook Cuadras with a left and floored him with a long right. Cuadras was up quickly and took the eight count. When the action resumed Estrada shook him with some more rights. Cuadras was firing back at the bell-but it was a huge round for Estrada. Cuadras made a fast start to the eleventh but then Estrada began to reach him with blistering right crosses and left hooks to take the round and level the scoring. They both fought hard in the last and for me Estrada just did enough to take it. Confusion then reigned as Cuadras was declared the winner and he and his team began to celebrate. There was then a consultation between the announcer and the supervisor and that clarified that Estrada was the winner by 114-113 on all three cards making the tenth round knockdown the difference between them. It was great fight and if the decision had gone to Cuadras that would not have been a surprise as the fight was so close. Estrada relinquished his WBA and WBO flyweight titles to go after a return fight with Roman Gonzalez but now he finds himself the mandatory challenger to Srisaket. Cuadras beat Srisaket on a technical decision but had lost his WBC title to Gonzalez. He will have to wait for his turn but he will fight for a title again in 2018 for sure.
Viloria vs. Cartagena
Viloria shows it is still not time to count him out as he halts useful Cartagena. The “Hawaiian Punch” had the fight well in hand over the first three rounds and late in the fourth pounded Cartagena with an array of punches. Cartagena stayed erect but was in bad shape when the bell came to his rescue. Viloria started the fifth where he left things in the fourth and raked Cartagena with a hail of punches to force the stoppage. The 36-year-old former WBC and IBF light fly and WBO and WBA flyweight champion was just over the fly limit for this one but intends to fight at flyweight hoping to land his 15th world title fight. Cartagena was a very live opponent. He had halted the then No 1 rated Joebert Alvarez in one round in July last year and then been very much in the fight until a cut caused his fight with former WBNC champion Toshiyuki Igarashi to end in a technical draw.
Berlin, Germany: Cruiser: Olek Usyk (13-0) W TKO 10 Marco Huck (40-5-1). Cruiser: Noel Gevor (23-1) W PTS 10 Isiah Thomas (15-2,1ND). Super Middle: Denis Radovan (6-0) W PTS 6 Yann Binanga Aboghe (6-2-1). Super Middle: Leon Bunn (6-0) W TKO 5 Tomasz Gargula (18-8-1). Middle: Patrick Wojcicki (10-0) W PTS 6 Fouad El Massoudi (14-10).
Usyk vs. Huck
Usyk kicks-off the World Boxing Super Series as he outclasses and stops Huck on the way to retaining his WBO title with a performance that will give the rest of the cruisers in the series some serious concerns.
Both made a tentative start. Usyk was moving and jabbing and scoring with long southpaw lefts. Huck’s attacks were more in the nature of bull-like rushes which Usyk avoided with ease.
Score 10-9 Usyk
Usyk worked behind his jab for the whole three minutes whereas Huck was just fighting in short wild burst. Usyk was catching Huck with counters as he rushed in but Huck had some success with hooks inside. Usyk finished the round by driving Huck to the ropes and landing a couple of good punches
Score 10-9 Usyk 20-18
Usyk was outboxing Huck. He used his jab to break up Huck’s attacks and slotted home long southpaw lefts. Huck was a bit more disciplined and scored with a couple of rights but Usyk opened up at the end of the round and had Huck under fire from series of punches from both hands
Score 10-9 Usyk 30-27
A dominant round for Usyk. Previously he had not been looking to get into any extended trading with Huck but in the fourth round he took the fight to Huck who was now forced onto the back foot. A spectacular six-punch combination of hooks and uppercuts had Huck looking for somewhere to hide as Usyk let his punches go.
Score 10-9 Usyk 40-36
Huck had his best round so far. Usyk made the better start taking the fight to Huck but Huck was able to land some rights. The best of those had Usyk clowning about his legs shaking and he cut loose late in the round again getting through with a right jab that snapped Huck’s head back and a following right to the head that sent Huck onto the retreat.
Score 10-9 Usyk 50-45
The fight was now one-sided. The movement, hand speed and power of Usyk were proving too much for Huck. He was also telegraphing his attacks with a big step forward allowing Usyk to take a couple of steps back and then counter. Usyk twice complained about low punches from Huck and was staring to fit in some show-boating.
Score 10-9 Usyk 60-54
Usyk was really warming to his task. He had Huck on the ropes and unloaded some heavy punishment and later in the round took Huck to a corner and landed some more. He was visibly enjoying his own artistry with Huck trying always to fire back but just not able to land anything of consequence.
Score 10-9 Usyk 70-63
The breaking down of Huck continued. The German was looking tired and his rushes were fewer and wilder. Two lefts to the head sent Huck reeling back across the ring to a corner. As Usyk followed him Huck pushed Usyk backwards and Usyk went down on his hands and knees. Huck came forward and threw a punch at the kneeling Usyk. The referee stopped the fight and Usyk seemed to protest about a low punch and the referee deducted a point from Huck for that although the punch he threw at the kneeling Usyk was a worse offence.
Score 10-8 Usyk 80-71
Usyk cut loose at the start of the round with a series of head punches. Huck’s only chance was to land a big right and he threw a few but they were either blocked or had no effect. He again landed a very low punch and was lucky not to be disqualified. Usyk had him trapped in a corner late in the round and Huck was looking tired and dispirited.
Score 10-9 Usyk 90-70
Usyk ended it in this one. After a last show of defiance from Huck Usyk began to slam home a whole series of punches. He drove Huck around the ring landing punch after punch. Huck was just covering up not throwing anything back and after another barrage of punches the referee stepped in and stopped the fight.
A towering performance from the 30-year-old Ukrainian as he registers his eleventh win by KO/TKO. On this showing he must be favourite to win the WSSB tournament. Out of the ring he is not your typical boxer as he writes poetry, composes songs and loves hip-hop music. Too much talent for one guy and he showed here that he has a real talent for hurt. Huck, 32, had a long reign as WBO champion including 14 title defences but for the first time in his career he has lost consecutive fights after losing to Mairis Breidis for the WBC title in April. He has made it clear he is not finished yet.
Gevor vs. Thomas
Gevor gets a tick in the winners column with comfortable points win over disappointing Thomas. The Armenian-born fighter was in control and put Thomas on the floor in the third. He had Thomas rocking in the sixth and ninth rounds but Thomas was not looking to engage and was in survival mode for most of the time. Scores 100-89 from all three judges. Although losing to Krzys Wlodarczyk on a split decision in May the 26-year-old Gevor actually improved his standing. He is the stepson of former European champion and WBO title challenger Khoren Gevor who also trains Noel. Gevor gave up boxing for a while to study law at the University of Hamburg but those studies are on hold until he finished his boxing career. He is rated IBF 5(4)/WBO 5/WBA 8/WBC 11 so a string of wins could see him land another title fight. Southpaw Thomas was considered a hot prospect when fighting out of the Kronk gym in Detroit. As an amateur he was the first American to win a World Cadet title and he won his first 15 pro fights but seems to have lost his way and his ambition.
Radovan vs. Aboghe
Radovan continues his membership of a band of outstanding young unbeaten German prospects. He showed both an impressive attack and some clever defensive work in taking all six rounds against Gabonese southpaw Aboghe. Scores 60-54 from all three judges. The 24-year-old from Cologne is a former five-time German amateur champion, was a silver medallist at the European Under 22 Championships losing to Jason Quigley in the final, and won a hatful of tournaments. Aboghe was 3-0-1 in his last 4 fights.
Bunn vs. Gargula
Bunn kept his record of 100% wins inside the distance as he stopped Polish oldie Gargula. Bunn was too quick and landed some flashing combinations. Gargula proved durable but was slowly broken down until the referee finally stopped the one-sided fight in the fifth. Gargula protested the stoppage but it was a timely one. The 25-year-old Bunn is working his way thought the usual suspects/victims and has spent less than 17 rounds in collecting his seven wins. Gargula, 42, now has 7 losses in a row, 6 of them by KO/TKO.
Wojcicki vs. El Massoudi
Wojcicki moves up to eight rounds for the first time and takes his winning total into double figures. Former French title challenger El Massoudi stuck to his task and gave Wojcicki some useful work without ever looking like being a real threat. Scores 80-72 twice and 79-73 for Wojcicki. The 26-year-old German Olympian was a three-time German champion. El Massoudi, the French No 3 lost to Joffrey Jacob for the French title in February.
Kempton Park, Johannesburg: Cruiser: Kevin Lerena (19-1) W PTS 12 Youri Kayembre Kalenga (23-4). Welter: Thulani Mbenge (12-0) W PTS 12 Mzoxolo Ndwayana (15-3-2). Super Welter: Nkululeko Mhlongo (12-0) W TKO 10 Brandon Thysse (9-1).
Lerena vs. Kalenga
Lerena wins the vacant IBO title with a split verdict over DRC fighter Kalenga with the decision proving controversial. Lerena wisely made a cautious start against the big punching Kalenga. He used his southpaw jab well and threaded home some sharp jabs. Kalenga was less controlled but landed some hefty body punches. Lerena worked his jab well and landed some nice counters. To be effective Kalenga needed to have Lerena trapped on the ropes because he was swinging wildly when at a distance. When he had Lerena on the ropes Kalenga opened up with both hands throwing hooks. It looked impressive but Lerena was doing a good job of blocking the punches and with Kalenga holding his hands low to throw hooks inevitably Lerena was scoring on an open target when he came off the ropes. Kalenga was always dangerous so Lerena was constantly on the back foot. When he had Lerena on the ropes Kalenga had more success when he threw uppercuts inside but too often he was swinging hooks which Lerena found easy to block. Lerena was cut over the left eye in a clash of heads in the third but it was never a factor. The South African scored with some quality counters in the fourth with a wild Kalenga missing with a big swing and falling to the canvas. Kalenga had a huge edge in power and kept marching forward and throwing spectacular volleys of vicious body punches. Lerena worked more consistently probing with his jab and slotting home left counters. His movement had Kalenga swishing air in every round but he lacked the power to stop Kalenga rumbling in. Despite those wild misses Kalenga stuck to his task and was focused on the body trying to slow the South African. The pattern never really changed as Kalenga could only fight one way and for Lerena to change his tactics and try to punch with Kalenga would have been stupid. How you saw the fight in the end came down to whether you were more impressed by the bursts of eye-catching attacks of Kalenga or the measured more subtle and clever jabbing and accurate countering from Lerena. For me the South African chose and executed the correct tactics and was a worthy winner. Scores 116-113 and 115-113 for Lerena and 117-111 for Kalenga. The 25-year-old from Johannesburg has reversed his sole loss which came against Johnny Muller and had won his last seven fights including an important victory over unbeaten Dane Miki Nielsen (22-0). He was rated WBO 2/IBF 3(2)/WBC 5/WBA 11 so there are chances for another title there but meantime he is IBO champion and he will want to take some time to enjoy that. Naturally former WBA interim champion Kalenga thought he had won and a protest to the IBO is inevitable. He was 2-2 going into this one with losses to Denis Lebedev and Yunier Dorticos in WBA title fights so this was a big setback.
Mbenge vs. Ndwayana
Mbenge given his sternest test so far by gutsy Ndwayana as he retains his title with a wide unanimous decision. Mbenge showed his power and almost ended this one inside the first three minutes. A huge right dumped Ndwayana on the floor in the opening round. It looked unlikely but somehow Ndwayana got up and survived to the bell. He went even further in taking the fight to Mbenge for much of the twelve rounds. It made Mbenge work hard but he is an outstanding talent and Ndwayana just did not have the power or skill to really pose any danger. However, he did make Mbenge work hard in his first title defence and took the champion past the eighth round for the first time in his relatively short career. Scores 119-108 for Mbenge from all three judges. Mbenge comes from Eastern Cape the area that produced former WBA super feather title challenger Nkosana “Happyboy” Mgxaji (only one loss in his first 74 pro fights!!) and former IBF champion Vuyani Bungu. Mbenge’s first punch bag was a garbage bag hanging from a tree at home but he is long way from there now and could go much further. Ndwayana, also from Eastern Cape was having his second shot at a national title and was rated No 2 by Boxing SA.
Mhlongo vs. Thysse
The old “Bulldog” has too much bite for the younger man as Mhlongo retains his national title with stoppage of unbeaten Thysse. This was a case of Mhlongo with ten years experience, nine title fights and 120 rounds of boxing against Thysse with two years, nine fights and less than thirty rounds of boxing behind him. The experience gap was too wide for Thysse to overcome. Mhlongo pressed hard from the start. Thysse was much quicker and slicker but Mhlongo just kept coming and landing hard accurate punches. He slowly broke down Thysse’s resistance and handed out a severe lesson before the referee stopped the fight in the tenth. Mhlongo suffered losses on the road last year to Rafael Bejaran on a technical decision for the vacant WBFederation title and on a close decision to Armenian Wanik Awdijan but he still rules the roost at home. Thysse can come again as this was a step too far at this stage of his career.
Astana, Kazakhstan: Super Welter: Kanat Islam (25-0) W TKO 9 Brandon Cook (18-1).Welter: Zhankhozh Turarov (22-0) W PTS 10 Bruno Romay (21-5).
Islam vs. Cook
Islam opens the door to a title shot as his corrosive punching erodes the resistance by a brave Cook and forces an inside the distance win. Nothing tentative here. Islam landed a hard right cross which stung Cook into launching a two-fisted attack scoring a right of his own and a quick burst of follow-up punches. Kanat landed a low left with Cook turning away in pain. The referee signalled a time out and Gave Cook some recovery time and gave Islam a stern warning. They both landed hard rights and Islam got away with another low left hook in an action-filled opener. There was quality work from both men in the second. Both landed heavy rights until Islam landed a left hook to the body that had Cook hurt and backing off. Another low left hook had Cook complaining to the referee who gave Islam another warning. In an exciting third Islam twice rocked Cook with booming head punches but was again given a warning for straying low. Cook then shook Islam with a right but when he tried to follow up a short right to the chin put him down on his hands and knees. He was badly hurt but the bell went when the eight count was completed. Islam handed out some heavy punishment in the fourth but was finally deducted a point for a low left hook. The confidence had gone out of Cook after that knockdown. Again Islam landed a low left hook but the referee took no action. Early in the fifth a huge left hook saw Cook slump down until he was held up by the bottom rope. He was up and ready continue after the eight count. He fought back hard and a clash of heads opened a cut over the left eye of Islam. Cook found his confidence again and clearly took the sixth. A strong finish gave Islam the seventh. A straight right sent Cook crashing to the floor just before the bell in the eighth. He was up at six and Islam did not have time to take advantage of the knockdown. A series of rights in the ninth saw the referee step in and save Cook from more punishment.
The 32-year-old Chinese-born Kazak move to 20 wins by KO/TKO. He is rated IBF 3(2)/WBA 2/WBC 19. He is a clever, aggressive boxer with real power who fights in the style of his more famous countryman Gennady Golovkin and is a dark horse danger man in this division. Under his birth name of Hanati Silamu he won bronze medals for China at the 2008 Olympics and the 2007 World Championships. He is of Kazak lineage and a Kazak millionaire convinced him to take Kazak citizenship which he was pleased to do and he and captained the “Astana Arlans” in the WSB. Ontario’s “Bad Boy” Cook gave it his best here. He showed good skills and some power of his own but Islam was just too quick and heavy-handed for him. He was coming off a career best win against Steven Butler in January and was rated IBF 5(4)/WBA 5/WBO 7.
Turarov vs. Romay
Turarov stays unbeaten as he takes unanimous decision over Argentinian southpaw Romay. After clearly taking the first three rounds Turarov suffered a break to his right hand in the fourth. The injury allowed the Argentinian to get into the fight and he pushed Turarov all the way but could not make up for that strong start by the Kazak boxer. “Da Kazak Kid” Turarov, 26, is a stable mate of Islam and is also based in Florida. He has done most of his fighting in the Dominican Republic and has yet to face a real test but is rated WBA 10/IBF 12(10). The 29-year-old Romay went 1-3 in his first 4 fights then 20-1 in his next 21but the opposition has been weak and he is not rated in the Argentinian ratings.
Radom, Poland: Heavy: Joey Abell (34-9,2ND) W KO 3 Krzys Zimnoch (22-2-1) W. Heavy: Przemyslaw Runowski (16-0) W PTS 8 Twaha Kiduku (11-2). Heavy: Serglej Werwejko (7-1) W TKO 4 Nagy Aguilera (20-10). Heavy: Lukasz Rozanski (7-0) W KO 1 Albert Sosnowski (49-9-2).
Zimnoch vs. Abell
Abell forgets why he was imported and knocks out the local fighter. Abell was sharper from the outset scoring with some hefty southpaw lefts and Zimnoch was in trouble at the bell. Abel built on the strong start by again pressing in the second with Zimnoch forced to defend rather than attack. The Pole finally seemed to be getting into the fight in third but late in the round a left hook sent him staggering into the ropes and a thunderous right hook put him down heavily and the fight was over. Big win for the 36-year-old “Minnesota Ice” and he has 36 inside the distance finishes. Zimnoch’s other loss came in similar circumstances as intended victim Mike Mollo knocked Zimnoch out in two rounds in February last year. The Pole beat Mollo in a return and says he intends to continue fighting.
Runowski vs. Kiduku
Runowski has to climb off the floor to beat Tanzanian Kiduku. In an even first round Kiduku showed some good skills and looked dangerous with his right. In the second Kiduku lunged forward throwing rights and a retreating Runowski went down. He got up and made it to the bell despite some frantic attacks from Kiduku. In the third Runowski shook Kiduku with a right to the head and then chased the Tanzanian around the ring landing punch after punch to compensate for that second round knockdown. Kiduku did go down but it was ruled a slip. From there Runowski established control. He worked the jab well and found the target constantly with overhand rights and left hooks to the body Kiduku fought hard all of the way and was always dangerous with his rights but too often inaccurate. There were no more scares for Runowski and he took the unanimous decision. Scores 77-74 twice and 78-74 for the Polish fighter. The 23-year-old Runowski, a former Polish Youth champion and European Youth bronze medal winner is being sensibly matched and making good progress, Kiduku showed some good skills and a strong right hand. He had won his last three fights and fought hard here.
Werwejko vs. Aguilera
Werwejko gets controversial inside the distance win over Aguilera. Ukrainian Werwejko outboxed Aguilera in the first but things heated-up in the second. Werwejko staggered Aguilera with a right but then landed three punches which swung around to catch Aguilera on the back of the head. Aguilera then punched Werwejko on the back of the head. Werwejko took control again in the third but in the fourth as Aguilera forced him to the ropes he landed a tap to the back of Aguilera’s head. Aguilera went down on one knee holding the back of his head and remonstrating with the referee. The blow had been so light that it was an obvious overreaction and the referee just signalled for Aguilera to get up. Instead Aguilera took his “act” a step further slumping forward down on both knees with his head resting on the canvas. It was a disgraceful bit of acting and the referee ignored Aguilera’s complaint. When Aguilera showed no signs of getting up the referee stopped the fight and crowned Werwejko the winner. The 6’5” (195cm) 29-year-old Werwejko has a major job to do if he is to rebuild his reputation after being halted in five rounds by Brazilian Marcelo Nascimento in March. Aguilera had his day in the limelight back in 2009 when he halted former WBC champion Oleg Maskaev inside a round but he lost too many fights after that. He was brought to Poland in 2015 to be a victim of Marcin Rekowski but came from behind to stop Rekowski in the tenth and then the work dried up.
Rozanski vs. Sosnowski
Rozanski ends Sosnowski’s career as he blows him away inside a round. Rozanski came out firing taking the fight to Sosnowski and shook the veteran with a left hook just 15 seconds into the fight. Sosnowski tried to keep Rozanski out with his jab but another left hook had him hurt and a right uppercut drove him to the ropes. He held until his head cleared but was unsteady on his feet. Rozanski drove Sosnowski back to the ropes again and showered him with rights and Sosnowski slumped to the floor. He dragged himself up but just failed to beat the count. The 31-year-old Rozanski doesn’t hang around. This is his fifth win in the first round and his seven wins have taken him less than eleven round. Former undefeated European champion and WBC title challenger Sosnowski looked a very shot fighter. He did not manage to land a single punch and thankfully announced his retirement.
Mansfield, Australia: Cruiser: Lance Bryant (11-3) W TKO 2 Aaron Russell (10-4). Super Welter: Samuel Colomban (25-10-1) W PTS 10 Adrian Rodriguez (8-1-1). Super Feather: Brent Rice (7-0) W PTS 10 James Katz (4-3).
Bryant vs. Russell
New Zealander Bryant wins the vacant IBO Oceania title with stoppage of Russell. There was no shortage of incidents here as Bryant floored Russell three times in the second round. A body punch started the rot but Bryant was guilty of hitting Russell when he was down and was deducted a point. He also lost points for hitting Russell on the back of his head and for a low blow but after the third knockdown the fight was stopped. The 36-year-old New Zealand champion has turned his career around with seven wins in a row. Russell 28 had won his last six fights but this is his fourth loss by KO/TKO.
Colomban vs. Rodriguez
Experience gets the job done for Colomban as he wins the vacant Australian title with unanimous decision over Rodriguez. Scores 99-91 twice and 96-94. The Cameroon-born Australian had failed in four previous attempts to win the national welter title. Better late than never to be a champion for 32-year-old Colomban. State champion Rodriguez was having his first ten round fight and Colomban’s big edge in experience was too much for him.
Rice vs. Katz
Rice retains the national title with a wide decision over former victim Katz. Scores 100-90 twice and 99-91. Rice had won a majority decision over Katz in his second pro fight.
Montreal, Canada: Super Middle: Erik Bazinyan (17-0) W KO 2 Bernard Donfack (23-17-3). Light Heavy: Ryan Ford (13-0) W RTD 4 Joaquin Murrieta (5-6-2).Super Light: Roody Pierre Paul (16-3-1,1ND) W TKO 2 Jesus Rios (37-11-1,2ND).
Bazinyan vs. Donfack
Bazinyan moves to 17 wins in a row with kayo of Cameroon-born German-based Donfack. Bazinyan confidently jabbed his way through the first with the only threat coming from wild swings from Donfack. Bazinyan continued to work the jab in the second and then landed a long left which did not look too hard but knocked Donfack back. At first it looked as though he was just shaken by the punch and both Bazinyan and the referee showed surprise when Donfack went face down on the canvas in pain. He looked to have injured himself but was counted out. The 22-year-old Bazinyan was born in Armenia where he gained a reputation as a street fighter before putting on the gloves. His parents did not want Bazinyan to serve his compulsory military service so they moved to Quebec in 2011. He won numerous local titles before turning pro with the team run by Otis and Howard Grant and served as a sparring partner for Lucien Bute in his preparations for the James DeGale fight. Bazinyan is now rated No 14 by the WBO. Donfack, 37, a former WBFederation champion has lost 5 of his last 6 fights.
Ford vs. Murrieta
Ford bludgeons Murrieta to defeat. Ford walked in behind a high guard forcing Murrieta to the ropes and banging home body punches. Murrieta was throwing lots of counters but Ford was either blocking them or walking through them and attacking the body of the chubby-looking Murrieta. The pattern of the fight never varied except when Ford occasionally used a strong jab to open up Murrieta By the fourth Murrieta was spend more and more time on the ropes and Ford was landing big clubbing head punches and the Mexican retired at the end of the round. The 35-year-old Ford has useful wins over Sam Rapira and Robert Berridge in UBO title fights but he has now relinquished that title to look for a shot at the Commonwealth title. He came to boxing through martial arts where he won titles at the Aggression Fighting, Fight Club and World Series of Fighting all of the titles being at welterweight so he has bulked up since those days. Four losses in his last 5 fights for Murrieta.
Pierre-Paul vs. Rios
Paul extends his current unbeaten run to eight fights as he overwhelms Mexican Rios inside two rounds. Pierre-Paul almost ended it in the first putting Rios down but not being able to get him out of there. In the second he drove Rios to a corner and kept punching until Rios dropped to the canvas on his rump. Rios got as far as kneeling on the canvas but showed no inclination to get up and the referee waived the fight off. The 33-year-old local southpaw gets his sixth win by KO/TKO and is now 7-0-1 in his last 8 fights. Rios has now been beaten inside the distance in all eleven of his losses.
Szekesfehervar, Hungary: Heavy: Zsolt Bogdan (13-0) W TKO 3 Jasmine Hasic (9-6). Middle: Istvan Szili (21-2-2) W TKO 1 Darko Knezevic (12-23).
Bogdan vs. Hasic
Bogdan retains the UBO title with stoppage of Hasic. First defence of the title for the 37-year-old Hungarian-based Romanian and ninth win by KO/TKO. Hasic from Bosnia has lost five of his last 6 fights.
Szili vs. Knezevic
Szili blows away poor Knezevic with knockout late in the first round. The 34-year-old Swiss-based Hungarian “Prince” gets his tenth win by KO/TKO. After ten years in the amateurs where he had over 200 fights and won a gold medal at the European Union championships Szili was undefeated in his first 20 fights he then lost to Antoine Douglas and Nuhu Lawal. The loss to Douglas ended any hope Szili had of finding success in America. Fifteen losses by KO/TKO for Knezevic.
Windhoek, Namibia: Light: Paulus Moses (40-3,1ND) W TKO 5 Saidi Mundi (19-4-1). Feather: Sakaria Lukas (20-0) W TKO 3 Mudde Ntambi Rabison (22-5-1). Super Feather: Jeremiah Nakathila (13-1) W TKO 3 Said Chino (13-6-2).
Moses vs. Mundi
Moses is much too good for Tanzanian Mundi as he retains his WBO African title. Mundi was down three times before the stoppage. Moses found the negative tactics of Mundi frustrating but he ended the fight in the fifth. A right uppercut put Mundi down. He made it to his feet but was floored again by a right. Once again he got up but the referee stopped the fight. Easy night’s work for the 39-year-old “Hitman” a former holder of the secondary WBA title. He is still No 4 with the WBO. Mundi, 28, was down four times and stopped in one round by Turk Siar Ozgul in England in June last year but had scored five inside the distance in local fights since then.
Lukas vs. Rabison
“Desert Storm” Lukas has no trouble with overmatched Rabison. The visitor from Uganda was competitive in the first but Lukas was landing heavily in the second bringing blood from Rabision’s nose. Lukas continued to hand out punishment in the third and he put Rabison down with a right to the body to force the stoppage. The WBO No 5 retains his WBO African title and goes to 14 wins by KO/TKO. He is No 5 with the WBO. Injuries hampered him as an amateur but he won a gold medal at the African Zone 6 Championships and was a quarter-finalist at the Commonwealth Games. Rabison, a former undefeated UBO champion, was having his first fight for 21 months.
Nakathila vs. Chino
Nakathila makes it 3-0 for the locals over Tanzanians as he halts Chino in three rounds. Nakathila was landing some vicious body shots in the first but Chino survived and managed to stay out of trouble until the third when he was trapped in a corner and being bombarded with punches as the referee stopped the fight. The former Namibian amateur champion has eight victories by KO/TKO and his only loss was on a majority decision against unbeaten Evgeny Chuprakov in Russia. Chino 20 suffers his first loss by KO/TKO.
Polomolok, Philippines: Bantam: Ben Mananquil (15-1-2) W PTS 10 Jess Rhey Waminal (11-2-1). Super Fly: Jade Bornea (9-0) W TKO 4 Samuthra (4-2). (19-2). Fly: Randy Petalcorin (27-2-1) W TKO 6 Jetly Purisima (21-24-4). Super Feather: Jaime Barcelona (40-61-1) W PTS 6 Eden Sonsona (36-8-2).
Mananquil vs. Waminal
Mananquil wins the interim OPBF title with majority decision over Waminal in a close hard-fought scrap. He won mainly due to his sound defence and excellent countering as Waminal pressed the fight hard. A clash of heads in the eighth saw Waminal cut over his right eye but it was not a big factor in the fight which was close to the final bell. Scores 96-94 twice for Mananquil and 95-95. Mananquil, a 25-year-old southpaw gets his fifth win in a row including a victory over experienced Glenn Porras. His loss and two draws came in fights in China. Wamina, 22, had won his last 5 and his performance here only added to his prestige.
Bornea vs. Samuthra
Former amateur star Bornea punches too hard for late replacement Samuthra. Bornea dominated the fight before flooring the Thai twice with body punches in the fourth with the referee stopped the fight. Bornea, 22, was making the first defence of his IBF Youth title. He had an excellent amateur career, having won a bronze medal at the AIBA World Youth tournament and is a two-time Asian Youth gold medallist. He owns the distinction of beating future WBO world champ Kosei Tanaka in lifting his Asian Youth title in 2013. Samuthra in over his head.
Petalcorin vs. Purisima
Just a keep busy outing for Petalcorin as he halts veteran Purisima in all-southpaw contest. The 25-year-old former interim WBA light fly champion suffered an upset loss to Omar Kimweri last year but has won four on the bounce since then and is rated No 3 by the IBF. With the first two berths vacant that makes him their highest rated light fly but not the mandatory challenger as he has not beaten a fighter in the IBF ratings. Purisima drops to 11 losses in his last 12 fights.
Barcelona vs. Sonsona
This fight was supposed to get Sonsona a win after he had been stopped by unbeaten Russian Evgeny Chuprakov in May. The 39-year-old 20 years a pro Barcelona was in fight No 102. Having lost 11 of his last 12 fights he looked the perfect victim but instead walked away with the majority decision. A shock for the man who wiped out unbeaten Adrian Estrella in two rounds back in 2015 but the danger signs were there from when he just edged out Barcelona on a majority decision in December.
London, England: Light Heavy: Liam Conroy (14-3-1) W TKO 2 Joel McIntyre (16-2). Super Middle: Cello Renda (29-12-2) W TKO 9 Leon McKenzie (8-2-1).
Conroy vs. McIntyre
Conroy brings the English belt to Barrow with an upset stoppage of champion McIntyre. Half way through the first round a right from Conroy put McIntyre down. He made it to his feet but was badly shaken and when the action restarted he was taking punishment and the referee gave him a standing count before the bell ended a horrendous round for McIntyre. A sustained attack from Conroy in the second saw the referee stop the fight. The 25-year-old Cumbrian, the BBB of C Northern Area champion, gets his sixth win in a row and his sixth win by KO/TKO and will be looking to get some nice pay days after this win. McIntyre was making the first defence of the English title. He had reversed his only other loss but will take a while to get over this one.
Renda vs. McKenzie
Another upset here as Cello cancels out McKenzie’s points advantage with a ninth round stoppage. Southpaw McKenzie was in front and on his way to victory until a barrage of punches put him down and out in the ninth. McKenzie was on the canvas for quite a while and oxygen was administered to him. He was able to leave the ring unaided and went back to his dressing room before being taken to a local hospital as a precaution. The 32-year-old Renda’s nickname is “Dangerous” so he lived up to that here. Although the younger man Renda had a big edge in experience and has scored wins over Liam Conroy and world rated Jack Arnfield. McKenzie, 39, a former professional footballer, did not turn pro until he was 35 and after this second loss in a row in title fights he announced his retirement
Tacoma, WA, USA: Super Middle: Mike Gavronski (24-2-1) W KO 6 Brian Vera (26-12) Gavronski gets a career best victory as he beats Texan Vera. After some feeling out in the first Vera was more active and accurate in the second but Gavronski worked well to the body inside. In the third a clash of heads saw Vera suffer a cut over his right which affected Vera’s tactics from there. He passed a doctor’s inspection and was strong in the fourth clearly taking the round. Gavronski began to focus on Vera’s injury with sharp jabs in the fifth and Vera moved into defensive mode. Gavronski fired off a series of body punches which had Vera hurt and then switched to the head with another set of punches and Vera dropped down to rest on one knee. Vera looked up at the referee whilst pointing to his injury and then made no move to beat the count. The 31-year-old “Imagine Me” Gavronski is boxing in Tacoma His two losses have been to the unpredictable Dashon Johnson and is now 10-1 in his last 11 fights. Vera’s best days are behind him. The 35-year-ol Vera had a spell of five losses in a row but they were all against high level opposition in Julio Cesar Chavez Jr twice, Willie Monroe Jr, Rocky Fielding and Matt Korobov but came into this fight on the back of three wins against modest opposition.
Chelyabinsk, Russia: Light: Shavkat Rakhimov (12-0) W PTS 12 Emanuel Lopez (27-7-1).Light; Mikhail Alekseev (11-0) W PTS 12 Malcolm Klassen (33-7-2). Super Feather: Magomed Kurbanov (12-0) W PTS 12 Stephan Horvath (18-6).
Rakhimov vs. Lopez
Rakhimov wins the vacant IBO title with unanimous decision over Mexican Lopez. The Russian southpaw swept the first four rounds before Lopez found his footing. Lopez came in as a late substitute and was competitive over the middle rounds. Rakhimov boxed conservatively over that period and proved he had paced his first twelve round fight well by being the stronger over the closing rounds. Scores 116-112 twice and 118-110 all for Rakhimov. The 23-yerar-old Tajikistan-born Rakhimov had won his last six fights by KO/TKO so got some very useful experience here. Lopez, 27, a former interim WBA champion, came into this on the back of seven wins including some good quality opposition in his victims.
Alekseev vs. Klassen
Russian Alekseev wins the vacant WBA Asia East title with very close decision over South African veteran Klassen. This one could have gone either way. Alekseev built and early lead but then a swelling began to affect the vision from his left eye which was almost closed by the end of the fight. Scores 95-94 twice and 96-93 all for Alekseev. The 22-year-old also holds the WBO Youth title. Former IBO and IBF champion Klassen, 35, looked unlucky to lose this one but that’s what happens on the road. He had conveniently relinquished his IBO super feather title that Rakhimov fought for.
Kurbanov vs. Horvath
Russian Kurbanov wins the vacant WBO International title with close decision over Czech Horvath. This was an entertaining close fight between two well matched fighters. Kurbanov was generally the one pressing the fight but Horvath showed a nice line in counters and there were plenty of furious exchanges. Scores 116-111, 115-112 and 115-113 all for Kurbanov but it was close enough to have been called a draw without too much complaint. The 22-year-old “Black Lion” wins the vacant WBO International title. Horvath lost inside the distance to Chris Eubank Jr and Liam Williams but was coming off a good win over London-based Kazak Arthur Herrman for the vacant WBO European title and was rated No WBO 5(4) so a big win for Kurbanov.
San Isidro, Argentina: Super Middle: Sebastian Papeschi (12-0) W TKO 2 Francisco Torres (8-3). Super Bantam: Claudio Echegaray (19-0-1) W PTS 6 Oreste Nieva (16-9-2). Super Feather: Jose Romero (16-0) W PTS 8 Guillermo Soloppi (22-18-2,1ND).Super Welter: Alberto Palmetta (6-0) W PTS 6 Guillermo de Jesus Paz (25-33-4).
Papeschi vs. Torres
Papeschi retains the WBC Latina title with stoppage of Torres. In the first round the much taller Torres was able to use his jab to box on the outside and score with rights to the head of southpaw Papeschi and clearly took the round. In the first exchange of punches in the second a booming right from Papeschi sent Torres tumbling back and down. He made it to his feet but was unsteady and staggered back to the ropes. The referee had seen that and after completing the eight count he waived the fight off despite protests from Torres. The 26-year-old “La Promesa” Papeschi, the Argentinian No 1, makes it six wins by KO/TKO. First loss inside the distance for Torres.
Echegaray vs. Nieva
Echevarria remains unbeaten with unanimous decision over Nieva. The 27-year-old from Cordova is No 2 in the Argentinian ratings after an impressive ninth round kayo of 23-1 Diego Santillan in July. . His story of how he got into boxing is one you hear occasionally. He did well in local amateur fights then moved to the big city to continue his career but did not have the money to pay for the gym charges so he cleaned the gym each day to pay his way. Six losses in a row for Nieva as he is being matched way above his pay grade.
Romero vs. Soloppi
Unbeaten young local fighter Romero easily gets past the experienced Soloppi in a dull match. Romero had a big edge in reach but did not use it well with Soloppi too often getting inside but holding instead of working. The referee was the busiest of the three people in the ring and after one butt too many he deducted a point from Soloppi in the sixth. A poor fight but Romero gets the win. Scores 80-71 twice and 79 ½-73 ½. The 21-year-old Romero, the Argentinian No 2, has yet to move up to ten round class. Five losses on the bounce for Soloppi.
Palmetta vs. de Jesus Paz
Palmetta wins but this one was monotonous and one-sided as Olympian Palmetta won every round but had trouble with the southpaw bustle of de Jesus Paz and did not impress. Scores 60-54 for Palmetta on all three cards. The 27-year-old former elite level amateur won bronze medals at the Pan American Championships and the South American Games and competed at the 2016 Olympics and the Pan American Games. He also fought for three seasons in the WSB for the Argentina Condors team. He will have to do better than this if he is going to succeed as a pro. The 36-year-old de Jesus Paz usually goes the distance and this is his sixth loss on points in a row.
Nakagami, Okinawa, Japan: Light Fly: Edward Heno (11-0-5) W TKO 7 Selta Ogido (11-3-3) Super Feather: Masatoshi Kotani (22-2) W TKO 5 Jason Egera (23-18-1).
Heno vs. Ogido
Filipino Heno halts Ogido in seven rounds of a battle between two southpaws to win the vacant OPBF title. After a draw in their previous fight Heno took no chances and went straight after the home town fighter. Heno scored with some choice uppercuts and left hooks to clearly take the first. Ogido was more competitive in the second and third but the superior strength of Heno was causing Ogido problems by the fourth and to add to his troubles he was deducted a point for a low punch. Despite his apparent dominance and the one point deduction two of the judges had the local fighter ahead and one had them even after six rounds. Heno continued to pressure a rapidly tiring Ogido and the Japanese fighter went down in the seventh. He made it to his feet but was finished and another series of punches from Heno saw the referee step in to save Ogido. The 24-year-old Heno thought he had won their first fight in May as he was originally declared the winner only to have the decision changed to a majority draw. Strangely all five of Heno’s draws have been by majority decision. Ogido, 24, was 5-0-2 going into this one.
Kotani vs. Egera
Kotani continues his impressive run with fifth round stoppage poor Egera. Fighting in his home location Kotani moves to 15 wins by KO/TKO including eleven in a row. He has lost only one of his last nineteen fights but is yet to move up from the eight round class and is Rated No 9 with the Japanese Commission. Egera was coming off two low level domestic wins but even with these two wins counted in he is now a poor 2-8-1 in his last 11 fights.
Fight of the week: Juan Francisco Estrada vs. Carlos Cuadras an exciting scrap between two world class fighters with honourable mention to David Benavidez vs. Ronald Gavril and Juan Carlos Reveco vs. Komgrich
Fighter of the week: Srisaket as he made Roman Gonzalez an old man overnight. Great performances by Olek Usyk and Naoya Inoue but their victims were not out of the top level of the pound-for-pound rankings
Punch of the week: .Either of the two rights from Srisaket that put Gonzalez down. Kanat Islam’s right that scored his first knockdown of Brandon Cook was special as was Joey Abell’s finisher of Krzys Zimnoch
Upset of the week: Joey Abell’s win over Zimnoch was not supposed to happen and let’s give a nod to Jaime Barcelona for upsetting favourite Eden Sonsona in fight No 102.
One to watch: 9-0 Former top amateur Jack Bornea from the Philippines