This past weekend saw the start of season 7 of the World Series of Boxing. For those unfamiliar with the concept which is under the auspices of AIBA, the governors of Amateur boxing, participants don’t wear head guards or vests and bouts are 5 3-minute rounds giving a more pro-style feel to proceedings. In a change to this year’s format the 12 teams are split zonally in to 3 groups, Europe, Americas and Asia.
The action in the Asian group kicked off at the Yalong Bay Conference Center in Sanya as China Dragons took on the Uzbek Tigers.
The visitors, who reached the semi-finals in their debut season in WSB last year got off to the perfect start with light flyweight (49kg) Nironshokh Ibragimov defeating Xin Huang in his first WSB outing via a unanimous decision. Things got even better for the Uzbeks as Addulkhay Sharakhmatov dominated Long Wang to win a unanimous decision at bantamweight (56kg) to make it 2 nil.
The Dragons then received 2 slices of fortune as the very talented Elnur Abduraimov was unable to box in his light welterweight (64kg) contest with Qianxun Hu and Ulugbek Khakberdiev suffered a foot injury in the 4th round of his middleweight (75kg) bout with Mingang Zhao. With the scores now level it was left up to heavyweights (91kg) Jin Guo and Boburbek Yuldashev to decide who prevailed. Yuldashev took the initiative in the first 2 rounds before Guo managed to push the Uzbek on to the back foot to win the next 2. With both men feeling the effects of a tough fight defences became very ragged but Guo landed the cleaner blows to claim a split decision and give the Chinese team an unlikely victory and get them off to a winning start, causing an upset in the process.
A few hours later in Moscow the newly named Patriot Boxing Team faced the Astana Arlans.
At light flyweight (49kg) Bator Sagaluev got the home side off to the ideal start by out-pointing Temirtas Zhussupov. Sagaluev was on the front foot early on and although the visitor attempted to turn the tables he was countered well with left hands and after 3 rounds Zhussupov had a mountain to climb. Despite a late rally from the Kazak Sagaluev held on to take the spoils via split decision in a solid and competitive fight. The Arlans hit back immediately with bantamweight (56kg) Ilyas Suleimenov simply out-hustling Artem Khotenov over the 5 rounds. The Russian started well behind the jab but the Kazak soon found his way inside and landed some solid body shots in round 2. Things became rather messy but with Khotenov unable to create enough distance it was Suleimenov’s kind of fight and a dominant final stanza sealed the unanimous point’s victory for the away man.
At light welterweight (64kg) Radnir Abdurakhmanov prevailed via split decision in an extremely close affair against Dilmurat Mizhitov. Abdurakhmanov began impressively landing some hurtful looking blows to the mid-section before Mizhitov picked off his opponent from range with some crisp shots. As both men began to feel the pace the action became quite untidy but with it all to play going in to the final round Abdurakhmanov’s greater work rate was enough to impress the judges and put the Patriots 2-1 up. In a must win bout at middleweight (75kg) Abilkhan Amankul levelled things up for the Arlans by defeating Radzhab Radzhabov. Amankul was in complete control for the first 6 minutes and looked a level above his Russian foe. Radzhabov turned up the aggression but Amankul remained calm and composed and a standing 8 count in round 4 really put the bout beyond doubt. Radzhabov did well to survive the 5th round as the Kazak youngster landed some classy combinations in a highly impressive performance.
Like the earlier contest in the Asian group it was left to the heavyweights (91kg) to decide things as Ilia Kvasnikov took on Anton Pinchuk. Pinchuk’s greater volume and hand speed saw him jump out to an early lead before Kvasnikov won round 3 to make things interesting. Unfortunately for the Russian he was unable to build on that success and Pinchuk won the next 2 rounds to take a unanimous decision and give the Astana Arlans a hard-fought 3-2 away win and get their WSB campaign up and running.
These articles are submitted by guest writers and sites. They aren't submitted by the usual folk behind Asian Boxing and don't fall in line with our editorial stance, giving a fresh view on various boxing issues from the Asian boxing scene.