Later today we'll seeWBC Featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr (30-1, 18) defending his title against Mongolian fighter Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9) [Нямбаярын Тогсцогт], who enters the bout at the mandatory challenger.
The bout will see Nyamabar look to become the second ever Mongolian world champion, following in the footsteps of former 2-weight champion Lakva Sim. Sadly for the Mongolian fighter he's the clear under-dog here, and is best priced at 7/2 to pick up the victory. The champion is priced at around 1/4 to pick up the victory. The draw is available at 22/1.
In terms of the "Method" of victory, the UK book makers are expecting a decision win for Russell Jr, with odds of 4/11 widely available, and 2/5 being the best available. A stoppage by Russell is available at 7/1. Interestingly Nyambayar is also 7/1 to win by stoppage and is 15/2 to win by decision.
Given that neither man is expected to stop the other it'll be no surprise to learn the bout is expected to go the distance, with odds of 2/9 on the bout going the scheduled 12 rounds. The bout is 7/2 to not go 12 rounds.
Related - King Tug gets world title fight at last! But can he win?
Later today we'll see unbeaten Mongolian fighter Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9) [Нямбаярын Тогсцогт] attempt to become the second ever Mongolian world champion, as he takes on WBC Featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr (30-1, 18).
Yesterday the two men took part in their weigh in for the contest, and both men made the 126lb limit with no issues at all.
The challenger took to the the scales first and was originally announced at 125.7lbs, with Jimmy Lennon Jr then stating "we will call that 125 and three quarter pounds". The champion was 125.1lbs, which was then rounded down to an "even 125lbs".
For the challenger the weight is around his average weight, which typically falls between in the 125lb to 126lb range for bouts at the Featherweight limit, though he has fought as a Super Bantamweight and had several bouts over the Featherweight limit. Strangely Russell Jr appears to be at the lowest weight of his career, which is quite remarkable for a man who has has been fighting just once a year since 2015.
Related - King Tug gets world title fight at last! But can he win?
On Tuesday American reporter Keith Idec revealed that there has finally been a plan set in place for Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9) [Нямбаярын Тогсцогт] to finally get his long awaited world title shot at WBC Featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr (30-1, 18). That bout is now set for a Showtime broadcast on February 8th from Allentown.
The Mongolian earned his shot in January 2019, when he beat Claudio Marrero in a WBC eliminator. Sadly Tugstogt was unable to build any moment from that fight as he's been out of the ring since, and that bout had followed a lay off due to a hand injury suffered in May 2018 when he stopped Oscar Escandon.
With a fight in each of the last 2 years Nyambayar has been awfully inactive, though it's worth noting he's had just 4 fights since the start of 2017. Amazingly that looks like an impressive level of activity when compared to the champion, who has fought once a year since 2015, essentially wasting his once promising career.
Russell Jr has essentially held the WBC Featherweight title captive since stopping Jhonny Gonzalez in March 2015, and had defended it annually ever since. There has often been talk of the American landing big fights, before he ends up with a disappointing opponent, with wins over the likes of Patrick Hyland in 2016 and Kiko Martinez earlier this year.
With both men having real problems with activity what should have been an instant classic between a tough and heavy handed Mongolian challenger and a lighting quick American champion is unlikely to be as good as hoped. Still it is a great chance for Nyambayar to finally make his mark at world level.
For those wanting to read Keith Idec's original story that's available here.
Earlier today unbeaten Mongolian fighter Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9) [Нямбаярын Тогсцогт] held a press conference in his native Mongolia, and spoke about his future plans, his glove deal and training in the US, among other things.
The key part of the press conference seemed to be that the Mongolian hopeful had been told to prepare for a bout on August 3rd, though the full details weren't revealed today.
Interestingly what was mentioned is that Nyambayar is hoping to face WBC Featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr (30-1, 18), in a bout ordered by the WBC. He did mention that there's a chance the champion won't face him, though he also added that the WBC aren't happy with Russell's inactivity, and from what was said it does appear that he will be pushing for the WBC to strip Russell if the American refuses to fight him.
In regards to gloves he stated that he had signed a 1 year contract with Venum, who are going to sell "King Tug" gloves. It seems like he is trusting Venum to have the gloves for him, after suffering an injury earlier in his career to his tendons which he blamed on having thin gloves.
At the moment preparations haven't began for his August bout, likely due to a lack of clarity in regards to opponent, but it's obvious that he and his team have not got their focus on a return in August and a potentially huge match for the WBC title.
Staying on the subject of training the fighter admitted it took a while to get used to training in the US, but he's now used to it, and is training 6 days a week, with 2 sessions a day lasting between 3 and 4 hours a session.
On what was a busy weekend for boxing there was a bout that looked like it could be something very special. That bout was the match up between Mongolian fighter Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9) [Нямбаярын Тогсцогт] and explosive Dominican fighter Claudio Marrero (23-2, 17). It was a bout that pitted two punchers against each other, both of whom have been down, and it had the potential to be a very explosive encounter.
Sadly it fell short of our lofty expectations. That's not to say it was a bad fight, it just failed to live up to the excitement we'd expected before hand.
The first round was close, though it wasn't long until Nyambayar started to get things going, and found himself landing his right hand with regularity, rocking Marrero in rounds 2 and 3. Not only was Nyambayar landing some big right hands up top, but also some solid body shots, likely looking to take away the speed of the Dominican.
Marrero began to try and change things up in round 4, but struggled to have success until late in the round. Although he struggled to have early success Marrero seemed to begin a little charge and clearly took round 5, his best round of the fight. He struggled to build on that good round immediately, with Nyamabar having a strong round 6, however rounds 7, 8 and 9 were very good ones for the Dominican, as Nyamabayar began to struggle with the movement, reach and speed of Marrero, who began to create space.
Marrero's momentum came to a half in round 10, as Nyambayar picked his pace back up, and the referee also deducted a point from Marrero for hitting on the break, something he had done through much of the fight. It was a hugely important round in the fight, and one that clearly had an impact in the end result, as well as the pattern of the fight, as it essentially killed marrero's momentum stone dead.
Round 11 saw Nyambayar starting the round well, but the action became messy as the the round went on, and Marrero could well have stolen it.
With both likely sensing the fight was close the final round saw Marrero start fast, and end up risking another deduction for again hitting on the break. Nyambayar would end up landing a huge right, and go for the finish, but Marrero saw off the attack and fired back before the two ended up playing up for the fans, taunting and teasing each other.
After 12 rounds it seemed a close, but clear win for Nyambayar, especially with the 10-8 round. The judges also saw it close, with scores of 114-113, 115-112 and 116-111 all in favour of the unbeaten Mongolian.
Whilst 114-113, a score that was clearly impacted by the deduction, felt too close, the other two cards seemed about right. It was a close, hotly contested out, but not the explosive fight we'd expected. Marrero boxed through out and tried to use his sneaky dark arts, whilst we'd hoped he'd come out brawling. He chose a tactic that gave him the best chance, but in the end Nyambayar's cleaner, harder, crisper punches were the difference.
With the win Nyamabayar books himself a WBC Featherweight world title fight, with this bout serving as a final eliminator.
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