By Rene Bonsubre,Jr.
BA RIA-VUNG TAO, VIETNAM- The visiting Filipino contingent gave it their all but came up short in the three featured regional contests held at the Gran Ho Tram strip. Jerome Baloro (6-2,4KO’s) gave Uzbek Olimjon Nazarov a lot to worry about as he stood toe to toe and gave quite a competitive contest. It was close, with Baloro’s volume and mobility giving the more experienced Nazarov (28-5,15KO’s) trouble. Nazarov’s power gave him the slight edge. All three judges Sunworn Klungboonkrung (Thailand) , Charlie Choi (S.Korea) and Martino Redona (USA) scored 96-94 allowing Nazarov to retain the WBO Oriental flyweight title.
Romer Pinili tried to smother the taller Song Chan Ho of South Korea but was at the losing end of a split decision. The Korean’s advantage in size was too much for the game Filipino even if he did say one of the judges. The scores – Surat Soikrachang (Thailand ) and Charlie Choi (S.Korea) 58-56 for Song, Martino Redona (USA) had it for 58-56 for the Filipino.
Pinili suffered his first loss at 5-1-1,4KO’s. Song is now 7-0,3KO’s and wins the vacant WBO Oriental Youth junior welterweight title.
Hometown favorite Hong Quan Dinh (7-1-1,4KO’s) had a wide victory against the feisty Demar Pellio (9-2, 4KO’s). Pellio was swinging for the fences all night but Hong kept his composure and boxed well for most of the fight. Korean judges Charlie Choi and Jae-Hoon Kim had it 99-91 for Hong, Sawaeng Thaweekoon scored 98-92.
Hong wins the IBF Asia Lightweight title and capped the evening of competitive bouts.
For the undercards – Pham Huu Thuong won a split verdict over Le Hoang Hiep while Phat Minh Sam stopped Le Dieu Phuoc in five rounds.
This card was promoted by Cocky Buffalo Promotions and supervised and sanctioned by the Professional Boxing Commission, International.
File photo – Olimjon Nazarov in Cambodia two years ago.
By Rene Bonsubre,Jr
BA RIA-VUNGTAO,VIETNAM- Professional boxing continues to rise here in Vietnam with a venue that offers a Las Vegas type of atmosphere. The Gran Ho Tram strip is being hailed as Vietnam’s entertainment capital and could very well be the next Macao. Three regional contests and two non-titled bouts will be featured this Saturday April 23 with a poster at the fight venue stating it is already sold out.
Olimjon Nazarov of Uzbekistan will defend the WBO Oriental flyweight title against Filipino Jerome Baloro. Nazarov (27-5,15KO’s) weighed in at 111.5 lbs while Baloro was at 111.13 lbs during the official weigh in held at the venue. Nazarov has beaten Filipinos Orlie Silvestre and Michael Mendoza in his last two bouts. Baloro (6-1,4KO’s) , will be making his overseas debut. Last December, he lost a unanimous verdict to Regie Suganob in Bohol for the IBF Youth belt.
The vacant WBO Oriental Youth junior welterweight title will be contested by Chan Ho Song of South Korea and Romer Pinili of the Philippines. Chan (6-0,3KO’s) weighed 139.3 lbs and will be fighting outside South Korea for the first time while Pinili (5-0-1,4 KO’s), who was at 138.89 lbs, is also unbeaten and fighting overseas for the first time.
The vacant IBF Asia lightweight title will be on the line when Filipino Delmar Pellio (9-1, 4KO’s) takes on hometown favorite Hong Quan Dinh (7-1-1,4KO’s). Pellio’s lone loss was against former Olympian and bemedalled amateur Charlie Suarez. Dinh has stopped his last three opponents. During the weigh-in, Dinh was 134.9 lbs while Pellio was 130.07 lbs.
The undercards will be six rounders between local boys - Phat Minh Sam vs Le Dieu Phuoc and Pham Huu Thong vs Le Hoang Hiep. This card is promoted by Cocky Buffalo Promotions and supervised and sanctioned by the Professional Boxing Commission,International.
Photo – Press conference held before the weigh-in at the Holiday Inn Gran Ho Tram Strip.
Earlier today we had a show in South Korea featuring a pair of WBO Oriental title bouts.
The first of the title bouts saw former world title challenger ArAr Andales (12-2, 5) score a TKO win over Viatnam's Minh Phat Sam (7-4, 5), for the WBO Oriental Minimumweight title.
From the off it was clear that Sam was the naturally bigger man, sadly for him that was pretty much the only advantage he had, as Andales was quickly, sharper, and more technically skilled. As early as round 3 Sam's face was swelling, and both eyes were rapidly closing and in round 4 the swelling got worse and it seemed a stoppage was inevitable, but Sam tried to gut it out and fight back.
As the rounds went on Sam's face become more and more swollen, whilst Andales looked very comfortable, using Sam's face as target practice. In round 7 the swelling was bad enough for the referee to take Same to the ringside doctor who waved off the bout, saving Sam from further punishment. The correct decision by the doctor, and one that saw Andales crowned the new champion.
In a much slower paced fight we saw WBO Oriental Flyweight champion Olimjon Nazarov (26-5, 14) retain his title with a win against Filipino challenger Michael Mendoza (11-2-2, 4). This fight was much slower and more technical than the opening bout with both men trying to out box the other, and both wanting to be the counter punch for much of the bout. The Filipino was the sharper, quicker man, and did seem to land the better single blows, in most rounds, but he seemed happy to be very conservative, and may well have given rounds away at times against the promoters fighter.
Whilst the bout did end up warming up, particularly in rounds 7 and 12, it never really caught fire and as neither man was all that willing to take risks. Nazaraov was the man often seen coming forward, and taking shots as a result. Mendeoza looked the much more polished, but he seemed almost happy to do just enough to win rounds. A risky tactic when he's the away fighter, and a tactic that backfired with Nazarov getting the decision 115-113 form all 3 judges to retain his title.
Ater the bout we can't help but think Mendoza will be kicking himself, especially given that he visible shook Nazarov a number of times, but seemed unwilling to roll the dice ina bout he could have won, very easily.
Just over a week ago we reported that WBO Oriental Flyweight champion Olimjon Nazarov (25-5, 14) would be in action on February 27th in Vietnam. Over the last day or so his opponent for that bout has now been announced.
The world ranked ranked Uzbek Flyweight contender will be up against 26 year old Filipino Ricardo Sueno (10-4-4, 3), who was last seen in the ring in December 2019. The most recent bout for Sueno saw him lose a decision to rising Japanese star Taku Kuwahara, in what was his second loss of 2019 following an opening round TKO to Thanongsak Simsri.
Although he has lost 2 of his last 4 Sueno isn't a push over and has scored decent wins himself against the likes of Diomel Diocos and Ryosuke Nasu.
Aged 35 Nazarov is an old man for the Flyweight division, but he is banging on the door for a potential WBO world title fight following 12 successive wins. Those wins have seen him turn his career around and he'll be desperate to keep the wins coming here.
Whilst it's not the most exciting of bouts it's certainly not an awful one and should see Nazarov being asked questions by Sueno.
Earlier today Sports.Uz, an Uzbek website covering sports, reported that a trio of Uzbek fighters signed to South Korean promotional outfit Cocky Buffalo were preparing to compete on a show set for February 27th in Co Chi Mihn City in Vietnam.
The fighters mentioned in the report were WBO Oriental Flyweight champion Olimjon Nazarov (25-5, 14), Abdurasul Ismoilov (8-1, 5) and Ravshanbek Shermatov (5-1, 2).
Although the three aren't well known outside of Asia the fighters are all fairly notable.
The experienced Nazarov is banging on the door of a WBO world title fight, and is currently ranked #5 at Flyweight. The 35 year old has been in good form recently and has won his last 12 in a row, including notching victories over Ivan Soriano, Kongfah Nakornluang and Orlie Silvestre, to climb up the rankings. Sadly however he is now 35, and for a Flyweight that is legitimately ancient.
The 24 year old Ismoilov is a well regarded Lightweight prospect who has bounced back from a 2019 upset loss to Hang Kil Kim in South Korea, and has won his last 2, including a good win over Adones Aguelo last February. He's a long way from a world title fight, but with just 9 bouts behind him he is certainly one to keep an eye out for.
Shermatov is a 25 year old Bantamweight hopeful who looked to be progressing nicely with his career until he ran into Korean prospect Jong Seon Kang, who stopped the Uzbek in 4 rounds. Since that loss he has fought twice, picking up 2 wins, but didn't look like a top prospect in the making.
At the time of writing the trio haven't had their opponents named for the show, though we suspect that will happen in due course, along with details regarding the rest of the bouts on the show.
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