Earlier today in Almaty there was a Kazakh card, streamed worldwide by IFL TV. The show wasn't the best, or the most well matched, but it did feature a number of notable Kazakh prospects worthy of some attention.
One of those hopefuls was 20 year old Rakhat Seitzhan (2-0, 2) [Рахат Сейтжан], who took a notable step up in class and stopped Uzbek fighter Shovkat Khalilov (7-3, 1) inside the opening round. The finish came following two solid body shots from Seitzhan, who showed some lovely handspeed and punch placement to close the show. This is a solid win for Seitzhan at this early point of his career, though we would like to see him in with a fellow Welterweight soon, and he looked a division or two bigger than Khalilov.
There was also a stoppage win for Ray Seitzhanov (4-0, 1) [Рай Сейтжанов], who stopped Berikbay Nurymbetov (5-2, 1) [Берыкбай Нуримбетов] in the 5th round to extend his unbeaten record. The talented Seitzhanov dropped his man with a left hook and and not long afterwards Nurymbetov's corner threw in the towel.
Another talented Kazakh youngster who picked up a quick win was 19 year old Talgat Shayken (2-0, 1) [Талгат Шайкен], who made light work of experienced Uzbek Bakhrom Payazov (22-14, 15). Shaiken almost broke Payazov in half with a body shot early in the round and although the bout continued it wasn't long before the referee had seen enough and waved off the bout. On paper this is a good win, but it didn't do much to tell us how good Sahyken is, as Payazov put such a poor effort.
In a more testing bout Nurtas Azhbenov (10-0, 4) was forced to go 10 rounds to take home a victory against 36 year old Armenian Arkadi Harutyunyan (4-12-1, 1). On paper this watch a mismatch and Azhbenov won all 10 rounds, though it again leads us to question whether Azhbenov has what is needed to reach the next level. The Armenian had been stopped 4 times prior to today and going 10 with Azhbenov is a suggesting that the Kazakh does lack stopping power. This isn't the first time Azhbenov's lack of power has been questioned and we really do wonder about how hard he hits. It is worth noting that Azhbenov had stopped 3 of his last 4, in the opening round, but those results do appear to flatter him and his punching power.
In the main event of the show Yedil Kozhamberdiyev (10-2, 10) [Едил Кожамбердиев] defeated Mukhitdin Rajapbaev (12-8-1, 8) to claim the interim WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Cruiserweight title. Rajapbaev was pulled from the bout after round 4 by his corner who seemed to accept their man had taken enough punishment. Interestingly prior to the bout being stopped Rajapbaev had actually dropped Kozhamberdiyev. It wasn't a huge knockdown but was still a worry for Kozhamberdiyev, who still has a lot of questions hanging over his head, despite the victory.
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Back in August we saw 19 year old Kazakh hopeful Talgat Shaiken (1-0) [Талгата Шайкена] make his professional debut. Today MTK announced his next bout, which we now know will take place in Kazakhstan this coming Wednesday, September 23rd.
The bout will Sahaiken take on experienced Uzbek fighter Bakhrom Payazov (22-13, 15) in Almaty, Kazakhstan, in a bout that will be part of a pretty interesting Kazakh card.
Shaiken, who looked flawed but exciting on his debut, is regarded by many as a really talented and promising, but one who will need time to develop and round off his skillset. He's aggressive, exciting, physically powerful and very, very raw. With that in mind an opponent like Payazov is a perfect bit of match making for Shaiken.
Payazov is no world beater, he's 35, he's been stopped in 9 of his 13 losses, he's a naturally smaller man, but will know enough to ask questions of Shaiken, before eventually being stopped by the Kazakh youngster.
Incidentally the man Shaiken beat on his debut, Berikbay Nurymbetov (5-1, 1) [Берикбай Нурымбетов], will also be on this show. The once beaten Nurymbetov will be up against the unbeaten Ray Seitzhanov (3-0) [Рай Сейтжанов] in a scheduled 10 rounds. Another 10 rounder will see will see Uzbek fighter Mukhitdin Rajapbaev (12-7-1, 8) take on local fighter Yedil Kozhamberdiyev (9-2, 9) [Едил Кожамбердиев] in a bout for the WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Cruiserweight Cruiserweight.
One other bout worthy of attention will see touted Nurtas Azhbenov (9-0, 4) [Нуртас Ажбенов] take on Armenian foe Arkadi Harutyunyan (4-11, 1). This isn't a great bout but Azhbenov has been regarded as one to watch since he turned professional and for those who have followed it's worth being aware of this bout, as it appears the show has been put together on relatively short notice.
Earlier today in Almaty, Kazakhstan, MTK put on a show featuring a host of promising Kazakh talent. The most notable fighters on the show were a trio of debutants who had all been very good amateurs and were now looking to kick off their professional careers.
The first of the trio was 19 year old Talgat Shayken (1-0) [Талгата Шайкена]. He took on the unbeaten Berikbay Nurymbetov (5-1, 1) and won a clear decision in a well fought, and entertaining contest. Nurymbetov was there to win, but was out worked and out muscled by the busy and aggressive Shayken, who kept coming forward making for a very friendly bout.
Although a clear winner Shayken put on a performance that was more "fun and exciting" than really showcasing sensational skills. Having seen some of his amateur footage it was the sort of performance we expected form him, though hopefully in the future we will see him develop more tools to his arsenal. He's a very strong kid, and had an opponent there to win, but he's also a bit of a raw fighter that needs real work and time.
The second of the debutants was Tursynbay Kulakhmet (1-0, 1) [Турсынбай Кулахмет] who looked sensational. The talented boxer-puncher had a style we expected would transition well to the pros and it did here as he dismantled Sagadat Rakhmankulov (6-2, 4) [Сагадат Рахманкулов]. The skilled Kulakhmet found his range very quickly and repeatedly landed straight left hands on the target, almost at will. Those shots broke Rakhmankulov's heart and he retired between rounds 4 and 5.
The only negative we can take from Kulakhmet's performance was the head clashes which did leave him cut, but they were a minor issue in what was a very, very impressive debut. If you want a Kazakh to follow who will be fast tracked this kid looks like a special one, and we hope to see a lot more of him in the coming years.
The third and final of the debuting trio was Kamshybek Kunkabayev (1-0, 1) [Камшыбек Кункабаев], a 2-time World Amateur Championship silver medal winner. He took on Issa Akberbayev (20-2-0-1, 15) [Иса Акбербаев] in a bout scheduled for 8 rounds. Sadly for, everyone, Akberbayev decided to use the bout to try doing laps around the ring, offered no offense and spent the fight trying to avoid Kunkabayev. Thankfully the debutant put us out of our suffering in round 2 with a body shot that dropped Akberbayev.
This looked the most interesting on paper but turned out to be the worst, with Akberbayev doing nothing of value, offering little offense and doing little other than avoiding a fight. Despite his nice looking record it was thinner than paper, and he looked very much like a man who didn't want to be there.
If we were grading the three Kulakhmet would be #1, he looks like he can be moved incredibly quickly. Kunkabayev would be #2, whilst his opponent offered little he still looked very good himself, and certainly has the tools to go far. Even against a negative opponent he looked solid. Shayken would be #3 but he is very young, and even coming #3 here isn't a bad thing. He showed a lot to like and hopefully we will see more of his exciting aggression in the coming years.
On August 23rd MTK Kazakhstan will be putting on a show from Almaty, Kazakhstan, featuring a number of notable Kazakh hopefuls.
Today we saw the opponent for unbeaten Kazakh Victor Kotochigov (11-0, 4) [Виктор Коточигов] being announced as Belorussian veteran Andrei Isayeu (30-17, 9).
On paper this doesn't look an awful bout for Kotochigov who's been out of the ring since December 2019, but in reality it's not a bout that will move the 27 year old much further forward. Isayeu is a 40 year old who is without a win since November 2016, and has now lost 10 in a row. Whilst he has faced some decent fighters in that losing run Akzhol Sulaimanbek Uulu and Erzhan Turgumbekov they were both earlier in their career's than Kotochigov is right now, and both were naturally smaller than the unbeaten Kazakh.
This is one of two 10 rounders set for the card which is set to feature a trio of notable debutants.
One of those debutants is Kamshybek Kunkabayev (0-0) [Камшыбек Кункабаев], who will be facing Issa Akberbayev (20-1-0-1, 15) [Иса Акбербаев] in an 8 round bout at Cruiserweight. This is regarded as a solid test for the 2-time World Amateur Championship silver medal winner, but a test he should pass with flying colours,
Another debutant is Tursynbay Kulakhmet (0-0) [Турсынбай Кулахмет], who we now know will be up against Sagadat Rakhmankulov (6-1, 4) [Сагадат Рахманкулов] in a genuine baptism of fire for an excellent amateur fight. The third of the debutants is Talgat Shaiken (0-0) [Талгата Шайкена], who will be facing the unbeaten Berikbay Nurymbetov (5-0, 1) [Берикбай Нурымбетов]. Both of these bouts are scheduled for 6 rounds at Light Middleweight.
For fans wanting to watch this event it will be shown on IFL TV, ESPN+ and Qazsport, in Kazakhstan, and will be the first show in Kazakhstan since February.
Whilst there some positive news for this coming month, with cards in Thailand, Japan and Philippines, who will all see boxing, we also need to report some bad news, and today we have some of that bad news.
The scheduled July 18th Kazakh card, promoted by MTK Kazakhstan, has now been indefinitely postponed due to the growing situation in Kazakhstan which has lead to new lockdown rules.
Over the last couple of weeks issues in Kazakhstan relating to "the on going situation", have worsened significantly. In the last month or so the 7 day average has quadrupled in the country leading to the current measures that have forced next weeks show to be postponed.
At the moment the plan is to rescheduled the event with the current bouts all taking place where possible. These included some fantastic match ups, such as Dauren Yeleussinov (8-0-1, 7) [Елеусинов Даурен] taking on Arman Rysbek (7-0, 6) [Рысбек Арман] the debut of Tursynbay Kulakhmet (0-0) [Турсынбай Кулахмет], with him taking on Sagadat Rakhmankulov (6-1, 4) [Сагадат Рахманкулов] and the debut of Talgat Shaiken (0-0) [Талгата Шайкена] up against the unbeaten Berikbay Nurymbetov (5-0, 1) [Берикбай Нурымбетов]. Fingers crossed those bouts, among others, can be scheduled for the not too distance future.
Whilst there is no current date pencilled in it does seem like a decision will be made after the current quarantine window, and will see the promoters talking with the local commission about when and how to hold the event.
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