First up at flyweight (52kg) Yosvany Veitia took on Jasurbek Latipov. Both struggled to find the range somewhat but it was the Cuban who was the busier and he edged the opening round. Veitia continued to beat Latipov to the punch in the next 2 rounds with the Uzbek failing to use his advantages in height and reach. A cut from a clash of heads brought the contest to a halt in round 5 but Veitia had cruised to an easy point’s victory putting the Domadores 1 up on the night and levelling things up overall.
The lightweights (60kg) were up next with Lazaro Alvarez up against Elnur Abduraimov. Abduraimov came forward with intent to try and pressure Alvarez in the first round but the Cuban picked his man off for the most part. Alvarez landed with some flashy shots in round 2 with Abduraimov continuing to try and walk his man down. Alvarez definitively won round 3 and despite the perseverance of the Uzbek the Cuban eased his way to a wide unanimous decision.
It was now imperative that the Tigers Shakhram Giyasov stopped the rot against Roniel Iglesias at welterweight (69kg). Iglesias was the aggressor in an entertaining opening 3 minutes where both men let their hands go repeatedly. Iglesias further stamped his authority on the contest in round 2 with Giyasov unable to get a foot hold in the fight. Giyasov enjoyed more success in rounds 3 and 4 but the Cuban did enough to claim the unanimous decision, leaving his side just one win away from the semi-finals.
In a battle of elite opperators at light heavyweight (81kg) Julio La Cruz squared off against Bektemir Melikuziev. Neither landed much of note in a tight and technical opening round before La Cruz assumed command in round 2, making Melikuziev miss on numerous occasions. There was now an air of inevitability to proceedings and La Cruz glided his way home to a wide point’s victory sealing the Domadores spot in the semis.
With only pride to play for the Super heavyweights (91+kg) entered the ring with the bout being contested between Jose Larduet and Bakhodir Jalolov. Larduet, who has been in destructive form in this season’s tournament managed to close the distance and work inside in the first round. Jalolov, who had the advantages in size, height and reach was unable to prevent his opponent from coming forward and he was forced backwards. Things went from bad to worse for Jalolov with a standing 8 count in round 3 adding to the Uzbek’s mounting problems. Larduet took a slight breather in round 4 and Jalolov dug in and showed real resolve in trying circumstances. Knowing he was well ahead Larduet took no unnecessary risks and the Cuban was victorious on points, wrapping up a whitewash for the Domadores who will face the Colombia Heroicos who overcame the Italia Thunder 6-4.
Over at the Serik Sapiyev boxing Centre in Karaganda City the Astana Arlans had a 3-2 lead going into the second leg against the Patriot Boxing Team.
At flyweight (52kg) Olzhas Sattibayev went up against Ivan Abramov. Abramov started well but by the end of the first round Sattibayev had cut the ring off and was working away on the inside. Round 2 followed a similar pattern with Abramov failing to maintain distance and allowing Sattibayev to force him into the corners. Again Abramov allowed Sattibayev to dictate terms and it looked like the Kazak just new a bit too much for his Russian opponent. That proved to be the case as Sattibayev strolled to a comprehensive points win to extend his side’s lead.
Next up in the lightweight division (60kg) Zakir Safiullin faced Shahriyor Akhmedov. Akhmedov began in a confident manor in the opening stanza with both men patiently looking for scoring opportunities. Safiullin had more success in round 2 but Akhmedov’s movement was still giving the Kazak a few issues. Safiullin adjusted in round 3 and counter punched Akhmedov expertly and also made him miss. Single shots from Akhmedov in round 4 made Safiullin’s task more straight forward and the home man scored repeatedly with right hands in the final round to give him the unanimous win and leave the Arlans just one victory away from a semi-final place.
In a change to the scheduled order Super heavyweights (91+kg) Dmitriy Zisko and Artem Suslenkov contested the third bout of the evening. In an epic opening 3 minutes Suslenkov came out firing but the WSB debutant responded with his own artillery as the pair waged war. The left hand of Suslenkov was constantly disrupting Zisko whose lack of experience was beginning to show in the second round. Zisko proved his toughness but he was simply unable to cope with the stinging jab of the Russian who powered his way to a shutout, giving his side a glimmer of hope.
The penultimate fight saw Aslambek Shymbergenov take on Shakhabas Makhmudov at welterweight (69kg). Makhmudov rumbled forward in round 1 but Shymbergenov caught his man on the way in with straight shots. Makhmudov continued to chug forward in rounds 2 and 3 but there was not much method to his forays and Shymbergenov piled up the points with little fuss. The fight carried on in a similar manor and at the final bell Shymbergenov claimed the wide unanimous decision to confirm the Arlans spot in the semi-finals where they will meet the British Lionhearts who narrowly defeated the French Fighting Roosters 6-5.
Lastly up at light heavyweight (81kg) it was Arman Rysbek versus Imam Khataev. Khataev’s brisk start saw him win the opening round before Rysbek responded well to take the second in what was becoming a really fun fight to watch. Khataev was becoming ragged and disorganised in round 3 and Rysbek was now in the ascendancy. Rysbek managed to stave off a tough challenge of Khataev and eventually prevail via unanimous decision in what was a terrific bout to finish off the nights boxing.