Over the last few months we've been focusing on the lower weights in this series, with Light Flyweight, Flyweight and Bantamweight all being featured. Today however we go up the scales to Light Welterweight for a bout that has a scorecard that doesn't appear to make sense, and a bout that really shouldn't have gone the way it did. In fact we struggle to understand how the bout went to the guy it did. This is one of the many bouts where the result didn't match what we saw with our eyes.
Tsuyoshi Hamada (20-1-0-1, 19) Vs Ronnie Shields (25-4, 19)
It was December 1986, in one corner was WBC Light Welterweight champion Tsuyoshi Hamada, a hugely popular figure in Japan who had brutal power in in his punches and a real fan base. Although a devastating puncher he was technically quite crude, relying more on his ability to bang rather than box. He combined that power with high work rated, an under-rated defense and an ability to take a shot when he needed to. His only loss up to this point was an early career defeat more than 7 years earlier, in his third professional bout, and since then he had gone 18-0-0-1 (17) with only Jong Jong Pacquing managing to hear the final bell against him.
Hamada had won the belt around 4 months earlier, when he stopped Rene Arredondo and was now looking for his first defense. That first defense saw him face off with American challenger Ronnie Shields.
At the time Shields was a genuine contender level fighter, he wasn't unbeatable, but was a high capable fighter who had previously come up short in a world title bout, against Billy Costello, but had scored a number of solid wins, including decisions over Saoul Mamby and Joe Manley. Shields, who is now one of the top coaches in the US, was a talented boxer puncher. Maybe a little bit under genuine world class, but certainly knocking on the door. Sadly for him he had lost his previous bout, a decision to Frankie Warren, though did still get this call to travel to Tokyo to take on Hamada. He technically a very good boxer, with respectable power, good speed and although he excelled in no particular area he was good, to very good, in every area.
From the opening round it was clear Shields was in Japan to win and was using the tools he had learned in well over 200 amateur fights to try and take that victory. He boxed well, kept Hamada at range for the most part, tagged the local star with clean single shots to the head and made Hamada miss, a lot. The different in boxing IQ was clear with Shields looking like he took the opening round without too much doubt. Hamada came out for round 2 with more urgency, starting the round well, but the boxing skills and brain of Shields neutralised the threat quickly, creating space and making Hamada work hard to cut the range. Thankfully for Hamada he did still manage to have his moments, and did land a number of solid body shots.
Hamada had one of his biggest moments in round 3, but that wasn't enough to discourage Shields who came back at him. Despite Shield's valiant fight late in the round it seemed very much like a potential turning point in favour of Hamada with the local star starting to build some momentum. That momentum was short lived however and the following round he was deducted a point for low blows, the first of the bouts 2 deductions.
In the middle rounds Hamada would have moments, but he struggled to build anything consistent, and seemed to caught clean when he was coming in. Their was always a sense that his firepower would cause issues, but Shields took it well, neutralised on the back foot and seemed to out box Hamada, taking his power away well whilst landing his own solid shots.
The second deduction in the bout came in round 9, when Shields was himself deducted a point for pulling behind the head of the champion. It seemed a rather harsh deduction, with the referee possibly trying to help out the local, or maybe trying to apologise for the earlier deduction, which also seemed just a touch harsh. The deduction from Shields seemed to reinvigorate Hamada who got an extra burst of energy as he looked to secure a 10-8 rounds. That same energy was seen in the 10th round from Hamada, but it seemed like he struggled to maintain it in the championship rounds.
From the first round to the final bell Shields had used smart footwork, held when he needed to, spoiled up close and tried to keep the bout at range. Hamada on the other hand had been the aggressor, for the most part, but had had very mixed success. After 12 rounds we went to the score-cards. We were in Japan, so it wasn't going to be a surprise if the hard hitting local got the decision, and there was plenty of close rounds, but it seemed that Shields had done enough. Even on foreign soil.
After 12 rounds the scorecards came in, giving Hamada the split 116-111 and 111-108 in his favour whilst the third judge favoured Shields with a score of 115-113. The judges, or at least two of them had favoured the aggression and the pressure from Hamada over the smart, but sometimes ugly and frustrating, tactics of Shields.
Whilst we felt Shields should have got the win, it was a close fight, what we can't understand is the scorecard of James Jen Kin. It seems completely impossible to have turned in a score of 111-108 for the bout, in favour of Hamada. Even with the two deductions the closest to his card we can get is a 114-112 or 113-113. Now, around 25 years later, that scorecard stands out as a truly wrong score. Whether it was tallied wrong, the scorecard was filled in wrong, or something else was wrong. It seems almost as if it's missing something incredibly obvious.
This score isn't just on boxrec, where it could have been a type, but it reported widely in the Japanese press as well. The only way to get to that figure would have been for a host of 10-8 rounds, but it was hard to see any 10-8 rounds other than the two with deductions.
This isn't the most controversial decision of all time. It's one of those where the guy we felt deserved the win didn't get it. But that card of James Jen Kin. We really do not understand it at all.
Neither man really had much of a career after this bout. Hamada lost the title to Rene Arredondo in July 1987, before retiring and later becoming a key figure at Teiken and a TV commentator, among other things. Shields would fight 3 times, going 1-1-1, before retiring in 1988 and later becoming a genuinely brilliant trainer. His eye for talent is great and he has played a part in the creation of numerous world champions since hanging up the gloves himself.
Usually in this series we try to sell a fight to you based on it's intense action, it's drama, it's excitement and the momentum shifts. Today we're not doing that. We're not going to lie. Today's closet classic isn't about action and excitement, but instead it's about watching a master of his art showing what sublime skills, ring craft an under-standing can do. It's a bout from 1996 that saw one of Japan's most under-rated and highly skilled world champions show what he could do against a very aggressive and heavy handed challenger. It was a showcase in counter punching, distance control and boxing IQ.
Hiroshi Kawashima (18-2-1, 13) vs Cecilio Espino (33-4-1, 28)
Now a days people don't really discuss Hiroshi Kawashima, the former WBC Super Flyweight champion. Back in the mid 1990's however he was one of Japan's most notable world champions of the time. He lacked the flair and excitement of many contemporaries, such as Joichiro Tatsuyoshi, Katsuya Onizuka and Takanori Hatakeyama, but he did what none of them could. He gave boxing lessons in the ring. He educated fans and opponents, showing ring craft that we rarely see from world class Japanese fighters. He did that in such an impressive fashion that the Japanese media began to call him "Untouchable". Whilst that was a bit too much he was one of the greatest defensive minds in Japanese boxing. Unlike many defensive fighters though he was able apt at letting his hands go, and when he made opponents miss he liked to make them pay. He was, for all intents a fun, defense first, boxer. He often stood just outside the pocket, drew leads and punished them. He defense first for a good reason, he had a very shaky chin and was stopped in 2 of his first 6 bouts. He changed his style and went on to have great success.
In his 5th defense Kawashima took on the dangerous Cecilio Espino. . Espino was dubbed "El Torito", the Bull, due to his aggressive mentality, freakish strength and heavy hands. He wasn't the most skilled boxer out there, but was all about pressing forward, pushing opponents back, trapping them, and going to town. He wasn't world class, but he was a genuine contender and had a style that could make Kawashima look bad. Espino threw a lot of leather, all with bad intent, he came forward relentlessly, and he could take a shot. Up to this point he had only been stopped once in 38 bouts, and that was to the hard hitting Miguel Martinez back in 1991, a man who had later challenged Pichit Sithbanprachan in Thailand.
Kawashima was expected to win, with some ease, but with Espino's aggression and Kawashima's questionable chin this had the chance to go horribly wrong for Kawashima. Or it could be a chance for the genius and skills of Kawashima to really shine against an opponent he could make look absolutely amateurish.
From the opening round it was clear Espino hadn't travelled to lose, as the two men scouted the other behind their jab. For those who haven't seen Kawashima before they will quickly note how slippery he is on his feet, how he uses his jab to control the distance and has a style that looks more American than Japanese. That was something Kenji Yonekura developed with him to try and make up for the chin issues. Despite the defensive skills though it's also clear he doesn't want too much space. He's happier when there's some distance, but not too much, and by the end of the first round you can already see him finding range for his left hand...and being tagged by a right late on.
From then on we begin to see boxing against brawling, with Espino refusing to ever slow down, and continually pressing, pushing and pressuring Kawashima who mixed things up nicely and showed some touches of pure genius along the way. He drew leads from Espino, he slipped and narrowly avoided shots, rode them when he needed to, and countered perfectly. Espino refused to accept defeat, and even after taking one clean he shook it off and came forward.
We'll not try and pretend this was action packed, though it was certainly an exciting bout, and a real example of how defensive fights can be fun to watch. It was a show case of boxing, and was yet still really fun. There always a worry that, sooner or later, Espino would land clean, especially given the aggression he was showing, and that added to the tension of what was a very entertaining bout.
If you're a fan of technical artistry and boxing ring craft this is well worth a watch. Don't think, just because we've told you Kawashima smart defensive boxer that this is dull it certainly isn't!
By Eric Armit
-Javier Fortuna stops Antonio Lozada as he waits for a shot at the WBC lightweight title
-Former light heavyweight champion Tavoris Cloud returns with a win
-Conor Benn outpoints Sebastian Formella in a war in London and heavyweights Fabio Wardley and Alen Babic score quick wins
-O’Shaquie Foster, William Zepeda and Eduardo Hernandez score wins in Los Angeles
-Yves Ulysse beats Mathieu Germain and Steve Claggett stops David Theroux in first round of super light tournament in Montreal
London, England: Welter: Conor Benn (17-0) W PTS 10 Sebastian Formella (22-2).Heavy: Fabio Wardley (10-0) W TKO 2 Richard Lartey (14-4). Bantam: Liam Davies (8-0) W RTD 6 Sean Cairns (7-3).Heavy: Alen Babic (6-0) W TKO 3 Tom Little (10-9).
Benn vs. Formella
A maturing and improving Benn outpoints Formella in a great scrap. Benn made an impressive start as he forced Formella back with his jab and was then stepping inside Formella’s jab to land left hooks to the body. Formella tried to establish his own jab but Benn was quicker and also connected with a right cross that had Formella blinking. Formella connected with a straight right just before the bell but Benn shook it off. Formella stood and traded with Benn in the second looking to land a chopping right over Benn’s low left but again Benn was quicker and although a bit wild at times he was doing most of the scoring particularly with left hooks to the body. Formella started the third jabbing and moving and had some success but he had no answer to the snappy jabbing by Benn. A clash of heads saw Formella turn away from the action but there was no cut. When the action resumed they stood and traded punches in what was proving to be an entertaining fight. Plenty of action in the fourth as Formella tried to force Benn onto the back foot. They both landed plenty of punches but Benn was landing more and harder shots with a couple of straight rights forcing Formella to back off. Benn unloaded with a whole series of slashing left hooks in the fifth and Formella looked to be in trouble but he regrouped and came right back at Benn. In the sixth Benn drove Formella around the ring with a succession of rights but Formella refused to crumble and fought back hard. A brutal seventh saw them both take and give punishment and it seemed that Formella was willing to walk through Benn’s punches making Benn work hard to test the English fighters stamina which had been questioned in the past. Benn welcomed Formella to the eighth round with vicarious rights as they went to war. Formella was fighting in slow motion as the frantic pace began to take its toll but by the end of the round he had Benn under fire. Benn rattled off some impressive combinations at the start of the ninth and later connected with clubbing rights. It seemed surprising Formella was still standing but he was and he was fighting back. Benn staggered Formella with a huge left hook in the last but the German survived that and seemed to just be focusing on going the distance which he did. Scores 100-91, 99-91 and 99-92 for Benn. A greatly improved and mature performance from Benn who has sharpened his skills without sacrificing any of his power. Formella was a big step up in the level of opposition and Benn showed he was ready for this level. Despite the scores this was a cracking, entertaining contest and the scores do not do justice the fighting heart of Formella whose determination to stand and punch with a noted puncher played a large part in making this such a good fight. A former undefeated IBO champion Formella’s only loss was on points against Shawn Porter for the vacant WBC Silver title in August.
Wardley vs. Lartey
Whilst Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce are grabbing the headlines Wardley is growing as a threat to them both. The Ipswich heavyweight again showed his power with a second round single punch destruction of Lartey. Wardley took the first round to study Lartey allowing the Ghanaian to apply some pressure and land some shots. In the second Lartey made the mistake of letting his left hand stray away from his chin for a split second to block a left from Wardley and Wardley launched a thudding right into the gap which dropped Lartey in a heap and no count was needed. The 25-year-old 6’5” English champion makes in nine inside the distant finishes in a row and with his tactical awareness and his punch he is a great prospect (Lartey was knocked out in four rounds by Dubois and took Nathan Gorman the full ten rounds). Lartey is just not in the same class as the British prospects.
Davies vs. Cairns
Davies beats Cairns in an entertaining fast-paced contest for the English title. Davies took the first round as he made life difficult for southpaw Cairns with some high volume punching. Cairns steadied things with a better second round getting through with some hard lefts. Davies upped his work rate and Cairns struggled to compete and the harder he tried the more gaps he left for Davies to exploit. Davies dominated the fight from the fourth and was finding the target consistently with jabs and left hooks. He handed out steady punishment in the fifth and sixth and Cairns was retired by his corner at the end of the sixth. Only the third quick win for Davies and his first opponent with a positive record but importantly it is his first title and at 24 there is time to build slowly. BBB of C Central Area champion Cairns had been victorious in his last four fights.
Babic vs. Little
Babic steam rollers Little into defeat in three rounds. Babic had forecast a first round win and he went out looking to do just that. He gave the much bigger and heavier Little a torrid time but Little came though it and was punching back at the end of the round. Babic went on to the attack again in the second forcing Little to the ropes and just throwing punches. Some connected some didn’t. Little managed to score with his jab and some counters but Babic just walked through them and kept punching. Little survived that onslaught but Babic ended it in the third. He was loading up on every punch and it looked as though he was in danger of punch fatigue. Finally he unloaded a clubbing right that had Little falling and Babic landed a couple more shots as Little was on his way down. Little made it to his feet and tried to counter the storm of punches from Babic but in the end he was overpowered and bludgeoned to the canvas and the referee waived the fight over. There is nothing fancy about “The Savage” the 30-year-old Croat has taken less than thirteen rounds for his six wins. Powerful but wild and wide-open at times. Fifth inside the distance defeat for Little, all inside five rounds and he also suffered a burst ear-drum in the first round.
Los Angeles, CA, US: Light: Javier Fortuna (36-2-1,1ND) W TKO 6 Antonio Lozada (40-5-1). Light: Austin Dulay (14-2,1ND) W PTS 10 Jose Gallegos (19-10).
Fortuna vs. Lozada
Fortuna too quick and mobile for the tall, ungainly Lozada and stops him in three rounds. Lozada was much the taller man and had a big edge in reach. In the first Fontana was content to circle Lozada looking for an opening. He leapt in with a left that staggered Lozada. Fortuna then drove Lozada around the ring before dropping the Mexican with a left. Lozada was up quickly and survived the round due to Fortuna throwing wild and inaccurate punches and a clash of heads saw Fortuna cut over his right eye. Fortuna was looking to end it with one big punch in the second but again was missing widely at times and was warned for a low punch. Fortuna looked to have scored a knockdown at the start of the third but it was ruled a slip. Lozada was trying to work with his jab but there was no snap in the punch. Fortuna attacked the body throughout the fourth with Lozada not having the power or the footwork to keep Fortuna out. The pace dropped in the fifth. Lozada was trying to draw a bead on Fortuna with his jab and had a little success whereas Fortuna hardly threw a punch in the whole three minutes. Fortuna came to life in the sixth. He staggered Lozada with a series of punches then trapped him in a corner and blazed away with punch after punch and when a left snapped Lozada’s head back the referee stopped the fight. A former holder of the WBA secondary title Fortuna had a good 2019 beating Sharif Bogere and Jesus Cuellar and is No 2 behind Vasyl Lomachenko but is not in the top 10 with any of the other sanctioning bodies so may struggle to force his way into a title fight. Lozada was 40-2 in 2018 but a run of 0-3-1 indicates he is past his best.
Dulay vs. Gallegos
Dulay puts a loss in February to Diego Maldonado behind him and starts again with a unanimous decision over Gallegos. Dulay was into his stride in the first quickly spearing Gallegos with right jabs and rocking him with a left. Dulay continued to use his longer reach to land his jab in the second and was firing strong lefts. Gallegos got into the fight with some quick attacks but was shaken by a left uppercut. Dulay’s higher work rate, strong jab and clever movement made it difficult for Gallegos to get into the fight in any meaningful way. Both were marked up in head clashes in the middle rounds as Dulay continued to boss the action with Gallegos always looking to come forward and having some success as he pumped out hooks inside. By the end of the seventh Gallegos was way behind and had a growing bump under his left eye from that earlier clash of heads but he had a good eighth finding the target with rights and getting inside to score with hooks from both hands. Dulay was on top again in the ninth and took the tenth. Scores 100-90 twice and 99-91 for Dulay. The Nashville fighter had lost a unanimous decision to Diego Maldonado in February so a good return to action. Gallegos came in as a substitute but had fought in September so was in some form of shape. He was 2-4 going into this contest with all four losses to unbeaten fighters with combined records of 74-0-1 so matched tough.
Los Angeles: CA US: Super Feather O’Shaquie Foster (18-2) W KO 9 Miguel Roman (62-14). Light William Zepeda (22-0) W KO 5 Roberto Ramirez (23-3-1). Super Feather: Eduardo Hernandez (30-1) W KO 3 Eduardo Garza (15-3-1).
Foster vs. Roman
Notable win for Foster as he imposes himself on Roman beating the experienced Mexican on the inside and outside. Great start for Foster as at just around the half way mark in the opening round he cracked Roman with a powerful straight right that had Roman stumbling and then dropping to his hands and knees. Roman got up the count of eight and then survived some punishment from Foster to make it through the round. Roman then went back to rolling forward trying to get inside to work to the body. He did not have much success as Foster used plenty of classy movement and fast, accurate counters to make Roman pay for every step. When he did get inside Roman did some good work to the body but even inside Foster’s hand speed gave him the edge and as Foster constantly switched guards Roman was getting caught with punches from a number of different directions. Roman had a good fifth as Foster chose to go toe-to-toe allowing Roman to spend useful time inside but when Foster went back to his boxing in the sixth he was in charge again. Roman has a great chin and relies on work rate and attrition to wear his opponents down. At 35 and after 75 fights those tactics were not working but it looked as though Foster would have to settle for a points victory. Early in the ninth as Roman left himself wide-open Foster hit him with a right and then a left hook which dropped Roman on his back. Roman was up at six but looked unsteady. When the action resumed Foster trapped Roman on the ropes and unloaded punches until the referee stopped the fight. Foster retains the WBC Silver title with his eleventh victory by KO/TKO. The 27-year-old “Ice Water” already has useful wins over Frank De Alba, Jon Fernandez and Alberto Mercado and is No 8 with the WBC. As Roman was No 6 Foster should be in line for a promotion. Roman is showing the effects of a long, gruelling career. He has had three shots at winning a world title and this is only his fifth loss by KO/TKO but the only way for him from here is down which is a pity as I like him as a fighter and he has the heart of a lion.
Zepeda vs. Ramirez
Zepeda breaks down and halts Ramirez in five rounds. Ramirez used his longer reach and good movement to outbox Zepeda in the first. Zepeda upped the pressure in the second and Ramirez did not have the punch to keep Zepeda at bay. He was getting past Ramirez’s jab and scoring with southpaw lefts although Ramirez finished the round with a strong attack. Zepeda was connecting with lefts throughout the third and Ramirez’s was starting to unravel as he was throwing wild and inaccurate punches and getting caught with counters. Zepeda hounded Ramirez for the whole three minutes of the fourth putting together some hurtful combinations and Ramirez was reeling at the bell. Zepeda picked up where he left off in the fifth driving Ramirez around the ropes. Strangely it was Zepeda who lost his mouthguard but when that was replaced he drove Ramirez to a corner and was bombarding Ramirez with punches and with Ramirez not punching back Ramirez’s corner waived a towel to get the referee to stop the fight. The 24-year-old Zepeda is on an impressive twelve-bout streak of inside the distance finishes but is not yet rated as his opposition has been very ordinary but he is ready to step up. Ramirez was having his first fight for a year. He was competitive, probably edging the first two rounds, but then his lack of power let him down.
Hernandez vs. Garza
Hernandez blasts a gutsy Garza to defeat in three rounds. Some crunching left hooks from big puncher Hernandez quickly had Garza on the retreat and Hernandez was ramming home strong lefts and rights as hr dominated the first round with Garza already cut under the left eye from a punch. Garza tried to take the fight to Hernandez in the second but a couple of neck-snapping uppercuts had him backing off. Hernandez was putting together powerful combinations and he rocked Garza with a series of punches at the bell. Garza was now cut under his right eye. Hernandez staggered Garza with a right in the third then Garza chose to try to punch with Hernandez. He had some success but was eventually overpowered and a ripping left hook to the body saw him drop to one knee and he was counted out. Hernandez was 28-0 with 26 wins by KO/TKO before he was surprisingly stopped inside a round by Roger Gutierrez in July last year. He was close to a title fight before that loss and is still No 9 with the WBC but will now have to battle his way back into contention. He turned pro at 16 and is still only 22 so has plenty of time but needs to work on his defence. Garza was 9-0-1 going in with his only loos being on points against future WBO title challenger Tramaine Williams so was a reasonable level opponent for Hernandez as he rebuilds.
San Carlos, Mexico: Super Middle: Juan Jose Barajas (11-0-1) DREW 10 Gabriel Lopez (10-4-1).
The WBC Latino title remains vacant after Barajas and Lopez fight to a split draw. This was a lively fights as Barajas tried to use his much longer reach and his 6’3” height to work at distance with Lopez rumbling forward pumping out hooks and uppercuts. Barajas rocked Lopez with a left hook in the third and his accurate jabs had a swelling growing under the left eye of Lopez. Barajas continued to outscore Lopez and the lump under the left eye of Lopez continued to grow. However Barajas was bleeding heavily from the mouth and it was subsequently revealed he had suffered two fractures to his jaw. Barajas continued to pick up the points with his jab but it looked as though he had a serious jaw injury. The fight became untidy as they both tired. Lopez was walking onto more and more punches but handing out plenty of stick himself to make it close although Barajas looked the winner. Scores 97-95 Barajas, 96-94 Lopez and 95-95. Disappointment for 24-year-old Californian Barajas who had scored wins over useful tests in Lanell Bellows and Fidel Hernandez. Mexican Lopez had lost his last three so he stops that from becoming a habit.
Dayton Beach, FL, USA: Light Heavy: Tavoris Cloud (25-3) W TKO 3 Ryan Soft (4-12-1,1ND). Super Light: Jeremy Hill W TKO 3Travis Castellon (16-4-1).
Cloud vs. Soft
Cloud given an easy win (I resisted the temptation to say a soft touch) as he returns to action for the first time in four years. Cloud took a round to shift any rust and then pounded on Soft in the second. A strong attack punctuated with a right to the head floored Soft in the third. He managed to get to his feet but was unsteady and the referee waived the fight over. The time when he was IBF light heavy champion and made four successful title defences must seem a life time ago for Cloud who lost his title to Bernard Hopkins and then suffered crushing losses against Adonis Stevenson and Artur Beterbiev before retiring in 2014. He will find it tough to get back to the top.
Hill vs. Castellon
Hill continues to carry the banner for New Orleans as he continues his winning ways with stoppage of southpaw Castellon. Hill took charge of the fight in the first and then dropped Castellon at the end of the second. Hill continued to score heavily in the third before flooring Castellon with a right. Castellon made it to his feet but another volley of hard punches saw the referee leap between the two fighters to stop the action -just as the two fighters stepped apart-and the referee finished up on the floor. Nine inside the route wins for the 6’2” Hill. He was an Elite level amateur winning a gold medal at the Ringside World Championships tournament but failed to get through the US Team Qualifiers for Rio. Castellon hasn’t just fallen away he has nosedived in going from 16-0-1 to four inside the distance defeats on the bounce.
Mimi, FL, USA: Bantam: Melvin Lopez (24-1) W RTD 1 Jesus Martinez (27-12). Welter: Jameson Bacon (25-4) W KO 2 Roque Junco (10-7-1). Super Bantam: Jorge de Jesus Romero (19-0-1) W TKO 7 Facundo Ased (9-4). Super Welter: Mekhrubon Sanginov (8-0-1) W TKO 7 Cleotis Pendarvis (21-7-2). Cruiser: Serik Musadilov (8-0) W KO 1 Daniel Najera (9-6-1).
Lopez vs. Martinez
Lopez gets his second first round win in a row as substitute Martinez retires after being down twice in the opening round. Lopez established his jab early and then landed a swift combination of body punches. Martinez was sloppy with his work and left himself open and two hooks to the body saw him drop to one knee. He got up at eight but a left hook to the ribs sent him down for the second time. He made it his feet as the bell went. Martinez was finished and he retired in his corner. Lopez, 23, continues his rebuilding project with his third win since upset stoppage loss against Chilean Jose Velasquez in October last year. Florida-based Colombian Martinez, 39, came in at short notice and was really pitiful.
Bacon vs. Junco
Bacon rescues a poor start with a thunderous left hook that flattens Junco. Not an impressive start by Bacon as he allowed the light punching Junco to come forward and put him under pressure and when Bacon did throw punches they were pretty wild. It was the same in the second with Bacon letting Junco control the fight. That made Junco overconfident and as he stood exchanging punches with Bacon a tremendous left hook to the chin rendered him virtually unconscious so that he was out cold when he hit the floor and it was six or seven minutes before Junco recovered. Second quick win in five weeks for former Philippines champion Bacon and his seventeenth win by KO/TKO. Junco was having his first fight outside of Argentina and is really just prelim level being 3-5 in his last 8 contests.
Romero vs. Ased
Romero floors Argentinian Ased in the second round but then seems to lose interest allowing Ased to last until the seventh. Romero was on target with body punches in the first with Ased already looking to be focusing on survival. A solid left to the body floored Ased in the second but he beat the count and despite absorbing more body punches made it to the bell. Ased boxed and moved over the next three rounds to stay out of trouble as Romero seemed to go off the boil allowing Ased to get a toe-hold in the fight. Romero finally woke up in the sixth pressurising Ased and putting together some sharp attacks. Romero ended it in the seventh with a straight right to the body that had Ased on the floor gasping in agony and although he made it to his feet he signalled to his corner he had enough and the fight was stopped. Cuban Romero, 26, was a disappointment in both a draw with Daniel Lozano in August and a points win over modest Luis Valdes in October and he let Ased hang around too long in this fight. Fourth inside the distance loss in a row for Ased since leaving Argentina with his two previous of the four contests having resulted in first round defeats.
Sanginov vs., Pendarvis
Nevada-based Tajik Sanginov finishes more experienced southpaw Pendarvis in four rounds. Sanginov was able to use his height and reach to keep the much smaller Pendarvis under pressure with Pendarvis rarely venturing far from the ropes. Pendarvis was looking to draw Sanginov’s lead and counter but had difficulty doing that with the physical advantages Sanginov had (Sanginov had boxed at 81kgs in the amateurs) and Pendarvis was taking punishment when Sanginov was able to trap him on the ropes. Sanginov finally caught up with Pendarvis in the fourth dropping him to his knees with a right to the head. Pendarvis made it to his feet but two lefts dropped him again. Sanginov jumped up on the ropes to celebrate but Pendarvis arose again and it took another series of punches flooring Pendarvis for the third time to force the finish. Sanginov, 24, had stumbled last time out only getting a draw against novice Fred Wilson but looked much better here. The unattached Sanginov was a bronze medallist at the Asian Youth Championships and competed at both the World Youth and World Olympic qualifier way up at 81kgs but lost out on a chance to compete in Rio. Pendarvis, 34, fought in an IBF title eliminator back in 2013 and was then inactive for four years. He has now lost his last three fights.
Musadilov vs. Najera
Musadilov massacres poor Najera inside a minute. The hard-punching Kazak came out fired up. He drove Najera to the ropes and then worked him into a corner and unloaded with clubbing shots to head and body until Najera crashed to his knees and was counted out after only 43 seconds. The 26-year-old “Panda” Musadilov has won all of his fights inside the distance needing less than 13 rounds to finish eight very low level opponents. He was runner-up in the Kazakhstan Championships in 2016 and won tournaments at both 91kgs and +91kgs. Fifth inside the distance loss for Najera.
Minsk, Belarus: Light Heavy: Ali Izmailov (5-0) W TKO 9 Ruslan Fayer (25-3). Super Light: Nadzir Bakhshyieu (6-11-3) W PTS 6 Sean Fennell (7-1).
Big win for Izmailov as he stops former world rated Fayer. It was obvious from the start that Izmailov had the harder punch and it looked as though he had put Fayer down in the second but the referee decided it was a push. Fayer slowly worked his way into the fight but Izmailov’s power was always a factor. From the seventh Izmailov began to land more power shots and Fayer began to crumble. Izmailov looked to have punched himself out in the eighth but he came back with a vengeance in the ninth. Fayer was already stumbling when Izmailov launches a brutal attack. Two left hooks to the body were followed by a series of head punches that had Fayer tottered forward trying to hold. Izmailov turned Fayer onto the ropes and then landed more heavy head punches before the referee came in to save Fayer. The 27-year-old Izmailov was in his first ten round fight. He had won a bronze medal at the Russian championships and after turning pro in August last year had already beaten former WBC light heavyweight title challenger Dmitry Sukhotsky and 18-1 Sergei Ekimov so very quick progress. Fayer had been on the verge of a world title fight when he entered the WBSS cruiserweight tournament. He was 23-0 but lost to Andrew Tabiti and in his last fight in August was halted by Aleksi Papin.
Bakhshyieu vs. Fennell
Something of an upset here as local low level prelim fighter Bakhshyieu takes a unanimous decision over previously unbeaten British hope Fennell. Scores 59-57 twice and 59-58 for Bakhshyieu who had lost his last four fights. Setback for 21-year-old Fennell but plenty of time to regroup.
Dubai, UAE: Cruiser: Lambert Fogoum (9-1-1) W TKO 5 Hany Atiyu (15-4).
Fogoum retains the UBO African title with stoppage of Egyptian Atiyu. Fogoum was just too strong and aggressive for Atiyu who tried to use his longer reach to work at distance but just could not keep Fogoum out. It ended in the fifth when Fogoum pinned Atiyu against the ropes and landed a series of body punches. The referee came in and gave Atiyu a standing count. It did not help Atiyu and he went down again under an attack from Fogoum and the towel came in from Atiyu’s corner. Seven wins in a row for the 31-year-old from Cameroon who is based in Dubai and his eighth inside the distance finish. First fight for four years for Atiyu who back in 2014 was knocked out in 75 seconds by Roy Jones in a fight for the WBU (German version) cruiserweight title.
Rimouski, Canada: Super Light: Yves Ulysse (19-2) W TKO 7 Mathieu Germain (18-2-1). Super Light Steve Claggett (29-6-2) W RTD 6 David Theroux (16-4).
Ulysse vs. Germain
Ulysse batters Germaine to defeat in a grudge match with the bad blood starting before the pre-fight press conference and continuing through the fight and beyond the post-fight press conference. Although Ulysse had a slight edge Germain was in the fight over the first two rounds but then Ulysse took over and dominated the action. The dirty stuff soon broke out with a deliberate butt and an elbow used as a punch from Germain and Ulysse repeatedly rubbing German’s face with his glove bindings. In the legal action Ulysse was handing out more and more punishment with Germain fading out of the fight. In the seventh two rights to the head sent Germain sprawling on the canvas twisting his ankle as he went down. After the count Germain tried to hold but Ulysse shrugged him off and Germain fell to his knees. As there had been no punch there was no count but Germain was badly shaken. After another right to the head dropped him and the referee stopped the fight. Lots of rumours surrounded Ulysse before the fight that he was not training hard and his mind set was not right. He certainly showed he is still a dangerous fighter but even post the win he was very subdued. This was Ulysse’s first fight since losing a close decision to Ismael Barros in December when a win could have led to a world title shot. He collects the WBC Francophone and NABF belts. Second inside the distance defeat for Germain. There were a couple of bumps in the road for Germain last year as after 16 straight wins he fought a draw with Steve Claggett and was knocked out by Mexican Uriel Perez.
Claggett vs. Theroux
Claggett just proves to strong for Theroux. Over the first two rounds Theroux was marching forward behind a high guard trying to take the fight to Claggett and being willing to stand and trade. In the third Claggett’s left hooks to the body began to drain the resistance out of Theroux. By the sixth Theroux had nothing left and he spent much of the round against the ropes and took a sustained beating with his corner pulling their man out of the fight at the end of the round. The 31-year-old winner from Calgary wins the vacant NABA title with his nineteenth inside the distance victory. Theroux is an entertaining fighter but two losses against Mexican imports and this crushing defeat shows his limitations.
These two fights are part of a round-robin tournament where all four fighters will fight each other at least once with points being awarded for a win, a loss or a draw in a league format and the fighter who tops the leagues will get a $50,000 prize but the with the beatings Germain and Theroux took it seems a pointless exercise (no pun intended)
General Santos City, Philippines: Super Feather: Marlon Tapales (34-3) W TKO 2 Eden Sonsona (36-11-2). Bantam: Aston Palicte (26-4-1) W RTD 2 Reymark Taday (10-12-1). Fly: David Apolinario (13-0) W Bonjun Loperez (12-13-1).
Tapales vs. Sonsona
Tapales returns with a win as he floors Sonsona three times for victory. It was obvious this was not going to be a long fight as Tapales dropped Sonsona twice in the first with hooks to the head. Sonsona decided attack was the best defence and stood and traded punches at the start of the second. He pinned Tapales to the ropes and landed with hooks to head and body until Tapales forced his way off the ropes and then it was bombs away as they just stood and threw punches before Tapales rocked Sonsona with a right hook and dropped him with a left. Sonsona went down but although he beat the count he just turned away and the referee waived the fight over. Southpaw Tapales, 28, is a former WBO bantam champion but he was stripped off the title when he failed to make the weight for his first defence. He moved up to super bantam but was stopped in eleven rounds by Ryosuke Iwasa in December last year in a fight for the interim IBF title. The IBF have him at No 4(2) so a title shot in 2021 is a real possibility. Sonsona, 31, challenged for the IBO bantam title way back in 2008 and made it to a high position in the ratings in 2015 when he blasted out 22-0 Adrian Estrella in two rounds but that was yesteryear as this is his sixth consecutive loss.
Palicte vs. Taday
It was like man against boy here as Palicte put in some ring time against the smaller and lighter Taday. Palicte picked Taday off with jabs connected with left ho0oks to the body and straight rights but never really pressed his attacks allowing Taday to launch some wild windmilling attacks. Palicte upped his pace in the second round handing out some severe punishment and Taday decided he had taken enough and dropped out of the fight at the end of the round. Palicte will be hoping it will be third time lucky for him. The 29-year-old Filipino turned in a great performance in fighting to a draw with Donnie Nietes for the vacant WBO super fly title in 2018 but was stopped in ten rounds by Kazuto Ioka for the same title in June last year. He is still No 10 with the WBO so a third title shot might be in his future. Eight defeats in his last nine fights for Taday.
Apolinario vs. Loperez
Southpaw Apolinario floored Loperez in the first and had him in deep trouble later in the round with the referee jumping in and giving Loperez a standing count which helped him to survive the round. Loperez had to withstand a body bettering in the second and took more punishment in the third. Loperez attacked fiercely at the start of the fourth but Apolinario rocked him with a right hook and landed heavily to the body. Loperez was finished and retired at the end the round. Now nine wins by KO/TKO for the 21-year-old local prospect. Poor Loperez is 2-9 in his recent outings.
Tampa, FL, USA: Welter: Harold Calderon (23-0) W KO 4
Gustavo Vittori (23-7-1). Light Heavy: Radivoje Kalajdzic (25-2) W PTS 8 Denis Grachev (20-11-1). Welter: Mark Reyes (14-0) W KO 1 Diego Perez (13-11-1).
Calderon vs. Vittori
In a battle of southpaws Calderon topples Vittori in four rounds. It was Calderon’s fight from the first. He easily slotted punches through the Argentinian’s guard in the first and then floored him in the second. Vittorio sparked briefly at the begging of the third but Calderon quickly took control again and by the end of the round Vittori was unsteady on his feet and cut. Calderon applied the finishing touch putting Vittori down just before the bell and Vittori was counted out. Sixth inside the distance win in a row for the 33-year-old Miami-Based Honduran who has yet to be put in a fight that will give a measure of how far he can go-and time is running out. Fourth fight outside of Argentina for Vittori and fourth loss by KO/TKO.
Kalajdzic vs. Grachev
Routine win for Kalajdzic as he outboxes a very much fading Grachev. Kalajdzic won all the way but left his attempt to end it inside the distance too late. With the points already in the bag he floored Grachev just as the bell went to end the eighth round. Scores 80-71 twice and 79-72 for Kalajdzic. After winning his first 21 fights Bosnian Kalajdzic dropped a split verdict to Marcus Brown in a fight in 2016 that saw both fighters on the floor. After three modest wins he was given a shot at Artur Beterbiev for the IBF light heavy title in May last year but was stopped in five rounds and this is his return to the ring. Russian Grachev is 38 and his recent fights have seen him go 8-11 so his future is behind him.
Reyes vs. Perez
Quick victory for home town fighter Reyes as he stops Perez in the first round. Reyes put Perez on the retreat with some sharp jabbing and then stepped in with a brutal left hook to the body. Perez went down in pain. He dragged himself up but was bent double and dropped again and the referee halted the fight. All over in 42 seconds. Now twelve victories by KO/TKO for 24-year-old Reyes including nine in his last nine fights. Third time in his last three fights that Perez has fallen in the first round.
Ecatepec, Mexico: Light: Francisco Vargas (27-2-2) W TKO 3 Otto Gamez (19-4). Welter: Luis Montelongo (14-8) W PTS 12 Luis Vidales (16-7). Super Welter: Ricardo Banuelos (13-51) W PTS 12 Diego Cruz (21-9-2).
Vargas vs., Gamez
Former WBC super feather champion “Bandito” Vargas returns to action with a third round stoppage of Gamez. After taking the first two rounds Vargas nailed Gamez with a left hook followed by a straight right flooring Gamez. The fight was stopped without a count and it was a good few minutes before Gamez was able to get up and leave the ring. Vargas lost his WBC title to Miguel Berchelt in 2017 and was beaten Berchelt again in a return match in May last year. Venezuelan Gamez has gone from 18-1 to 19-4 after three consecutive defeats.
Montelongo vs. Vidales
With his seventh win in his last eight fights “Little Wolf” Montelongo, 25, wins the Mexican title with split verdict over champion Vidales. Scores 116-112 and 115-114 for Montelongo and 116-112 for Vidales. Vidales, 21, was making the first defence of his national title.
Banuelos vs. Cruz
In the best fight of the night Banuelos lifts the vacant Mexican title with a unanimous decision over Cruz. Success at the third attempt for Banuelos who had lost and drawn in previous title fights. Cruz falls to 2-6-1 in his last nine outings.
La Calera, Argentina: Light: Jose Romero (24-0) WPTS 12 Javier Clavero (27-8).
Romero wins the interim South American title with convincing victory over seasoned pro Clavero. Romero used his better skills and clever movement to frustrate the ever pressing Clavero. Fighting mainly on the back foot Romero piled up the points with fast, accurate jabs and stinging counters. Clavero had some success when he managed to get inside or pinned Romero against the ropes but those moments were rare and Romero took a clear unanimous verdict. Scores 19-110 ½, 117 ½ -114 ½, 116-114 ½ all for unbeaten Romero. The 24-year-old former undefeated Argentinian champion should really be looking to move up to face some international level opposition now. Clavero, a former South American champion, had high hopes when he went 19-1 in his opening 20 fights but 8-7 tells a different story.
Rome, Italy: Light Heavy: Adriano Sperandio (12-1) W PTS 10 Luca Spadaccini (6-1-3).
In his first fight for 18 months local favourite Sperandio collects the vacant Italian title with a unanimous decision over Spadaccini. Sperandio proved too quick and too mobile for Spadaccini. He was much the better technical boxer working well with his jab and being quick enough to land accurate shots inside and get out before Spadaccini could counter. Spadaccini’s sheer aggression was enough to earn him a couple of rounds but generally he was playing catch-up against the fleeter Sperandio and never really threatened Sperandino’s dominance. Scores 98-92, 98-93 and 97-93 for the new champion. Sperandio, 32, rebounds with this win after losing a very close decision to 23-0 Marko Nikolic for the WBC Mediterranean title in May 2019. Spadaccini, 31, was in his first ten round fight. The two draws on his record were technical draws and he will look to regroup and challenge for the title again next year.
Tokyo, Japan: Super Light: Rikki Naito (23-2) W RTD 9 Yusuke Konno (16-5).
Naito retains the OPBF title with injury victory over Konno. This was expected to be a classic boxer vs. puncher contest with southpaw Naito having the skills and Konno trying to impose himself with constant aggression. The first two rounds followed that expectation with clever boxing from Naito taking the opening round but successful pressure tactics from Konno giving him the second. Naito boxed smartly over the third and fourth and was up on all cards at 40-36 twice and 39-37. Naito increased his lead in the fifth connecting with a series of jabs and hooks. Konno suddenly came back into the fight in the sixth as he was able to get inside and pound away at Naito’s body and looked capable of springing a surprise. Konno had a poor seventh and it was apparent that he had damaged his left arm and was effectively fighting with just one hand and although he fought bravely through the eighth and ninth he was forced to retire. Fourth successful defence of the OPBF title for Naito. Naito was 59-9 as an amateur. He is the son of Junichi “Cassius” Naito who was also an OPBF champion. Naito’s two losses have been to Kenichi Ogawa who went on to beat Tevin Farmer for the IBF title but tested positive for a banned substance. Konno, a former Japanese super light champion, had won his last five fights and after the injury deserves another shot at the title.
Tijuana, Mexico: Welter: Alessandro Riguccini (25-0) W TKO 3 Ivan Alvarez (29-11-1). Super Welter: Damian Sosa (16-1) W RTD 6 Ernesto Olvera (11-5-1), Super Feather: Manuel Jaimes (11-0) W PTS 8 Cristian Santiago Vazquez (15-1-1).
Riguccini vs. Alvarez
Riguccini gets repeat win against Alvarez. Over the first two rounds Alvarez was able to use his longer reach to keep the smaller Italian out but it was tame stuff with very little fire on show from either boxer and with neither putting any snap into their punches. It looked like some mild sparring with a “you don’t hurt me and I won’t hurt you pact”. Riguccini broke the pact early in the third as Alvarez walked in Riguccini buried a right into the oncoming Mexican’s body. Alvarez went down face first on the canvas and the referee did not bother to count. Riguccini had knocked Alvarez out in one round when the Mexican travelled to Riguccini’s home town of Florence in April last year, one of only two fights Riguccini has had in Italy. At 5’5” Riguccini is small for a welterweight which could count against when he steps up to better opposition. He is a former world kickboxing and full contact champion. He holds the WBC Silver interim title and is rated No 24 by them. Fifth loss by KO/TKO for Alvarez whose recent record reads 2-4-1
Sosa vs. Olvera
Local fighter “Samurai “Sosa gets his ninth win by KO/TKO as he stops Olvera in seven rounds. Sosa had the better skills with Olvera just swinging wide punches and getting caught with counters. His sheer aggression made him competitive but he was soaking up punishment. A diet of body shots weakened Olvera in the sixth and a series of head punches had him staggering and he retired in his corner at the end of the round. Sosa has scored five wins since losing his unbeaten tag when being outpointed to Russian Artem Oganesyan in March 2019. All four of Olvera’s losses have been to unbeaten fighters including visits to Canada and France.
Jaimes vs. Vazquez
Good win for Jaimes as he decisions Vazquez to collect the vacant WBC Youth title. Vazquez threw plenty of punches but mostly they were just arm punches with no power and Jaimes was also able to block most that Vazquez threw. Jaimes had a lower work rate but a higher success rate with his punches and although never looking like stopping Vazquez he was a clear winner. The young Californian won on scores of 78-74 twice and 80-72. The 20-year-old Jaimes was in his first eight round bout and this is only the second time he has had to go the distance having beaten 9 of his previous 10 opponents by KO/TKO. Vazquez, 19, was coming off a useful win over 24-2-1 Russell Fiore.
Cambridge, New Zealand: Cruiser: Joshua Francis (10-1-1) W TKO 1 Kyle Mereweather (1.1).
Francis again shows his power as he finishes poor Mereweather inside a round. After some sparring one huge right cross from Francis floored Mereweather heavily and the fight was over. After a 1-1-1 start to his career Francis is now 9-0 with 7 wins by KO/TKO four of them inside the opening round. He was defending the ANBF Australasian title. Mereweather’s previous pro experience was just one four round bout.
Valencia, Spain: Super Welter: Dylan Moran (15-1,1ND) W PTS 8 David Bency (14-18-1). Light: Juan felix Gomez (9-0) W PTS 8 Izan Dura (3-6).
Moran vs. Bency
Useful eight rounds of work for Irish hope Moran. Spaniish-based Nicaraguan Bency was typical of the Nicas based in Spain in that he tried hard, kept pressing but lacked the power and skill to pose any threat to the talented 5’ 11” tall southpaw Moran. All three cards read 79-73 for Moran. The 25-year-old from Waterford gets his fifth win on the bounce. He suffered an upset loss when he was stopped in three rounds by novice Denis Okoth in Catskills, NY, in June last year. Now eight losses in a row for Bency which is another trait the Nicas share.
Gomez vs. Dura
Both of these fighters are from Valencia but that was the only thing they shared, “Juanfe” Gomez is a southpaw and a much better boxer. In his first fight for 13 months after a slow opening round Gomez brought his better skills into play and he dominated the fight with only his lack of power making it possible for Dura to go the full eight rounds. Scores 79-73 for Gomez on all three scorecards. He will be looking to fight for the national title next year. Dura keeps his record of not losing inside the distance.
Gniew, Poland: Light Heavy: Pawel Augustynik (12-0) W PTS 10 Dariusz Sek (28-7-3). Super Middle: Bartlomiej Grafka (23-38-4) W PTS 6 Rafal Jackiewicz (51-28-3). Heavy: Kamil Mroczkowski (1-0) W TKO 2 Mateusz Rybarski (1-12).
Augustynik vs. Sek
On the first Queensberry Polska show Augustynik wins wide unanimous points decision over veteran Sek. Augustynik was looking to get inside and work on the body with Sek trying to work at distance with his right jabs. Augustynik piled on the pressure and Sek found himself fighting with his back against the ropes and spent much of the fourth round trapped in a corner. Augustynik continued to dominate the action in the fifth and sixth with Sek landing occasional counters and lefts from Augustynik rocked Sek in the seventh. In the eighth a right hook dropped Sek. He beat the count then Augustynik piled on the punches with Sek responding enough to convince the referee he was still able to compete. The pace dropped in the ninth and then they fought hard through the tenth with Augustynik getting the better of the exchanges. Scores 100-89 twice and 97-92 for Augustynik who lifts the WBC International Silver belt. Hopefully that will lead to some international level fights for Augustynik. Sek, 34, had lost 3 of his last 4 fights by KO/TKO so he steadied his slide but the only way for him now is down.
Grafka vs. Jackiewicz
Plenty of pride on show here as these two seasoned pros battle to settle the argument over who should have been give the verdict in their drawn fight in September. Grafka tried to use his physical advantages to bully Jackiewicz but the former European champion used his better skills to stay off the ropes and in the centre of the ring where he had space to work. The rounds were close with some powerful rights from Grafka just giving his the edge. They traded punches throughout the fifth but Grafka’s hard rights had Jackiewicz under pressure in the sixth. Scores 58-56 twice and 59-55 for Grafka. These two have reached this point by very different routes with Jackiewicz, now 43, winning a European title and challenging for the IBF title and Grafka, 32, spending much of his career as a travelling loser with few highlights.
Mroczkowski vs. Rybarski
Some interest here in the first pro fight of heavyweight Mroczkowski who scored wins over both Daniel Dubois and Peter Kadiru in the amateurs. He stalked Rybarski in the first then floored him with a body punch at the start of the second. Rybarski made it to his feet but a clubbing right to the head put him down again and the fight was stopped. It will be interesting to see how Mroczkowski develops as a pro. He weighed 120kgs for this fight-down from 150kgs! He aims to get to 110kgs in the future. Seventh loss by KO/TKO for Rybarski.
Szydlowiec, Poland: Light: Damian Wrzesinski (21-1-2) W PTS Luis Viedas (26-10-1). Middle: Lukasz Maciec (25-3-1) W PTS 8 Marek Andrysek (5-1).
Wrzesinski vs. Viedas
Comfortable win for Polish International champion Wrzesinski. Not a big puncher he collected the points round by round with plenty of left jabs and quick but light combinations. Viedas, just 5’3”, spent much of the fight on the end of Wrzesinski’s jab and mainly confined himself to occasional attacking bursts. Wrzesinski was lucky he was fighting at home as he landed too many low punches which might have lead to a disqualification elsewhere. Viedas never really threatened and Wrzesinski took the decision on scores 100-90 twice and 99-91. He is hoping to challenge for the EU or EBU titles next year. Viedas had won his last 14 fights but really just against prelim fighters of very modest ability.
Maciec vs. Andrysek
Former EU title challenger Maciec returned to the ring for the first time since October 2018 with a split points victory over newcomer Andrysek. Maciec showed plenty of rust and Czech Andrysek was able to keep the fight close over the first six rounds. Maciec began to find the range and paced the fight better than Andrysek which proved the difference in the end. Scores 79-73 and 78-74 for Maciec and 77-75 for Andrysek. The 31-year-opld pole had won 8 of his last 9 fights before retiring with the loss being against Hugo Centeno in 2015. Andrysek, the Czech super middle champion had dropped 8lbs since his fight in February and would do better going back to super middle.
Tokyo, Japan: Welter: Jin Sasaki (9-0) W TKO 1 Tatsuya Miyazaki (9-14-1).
Another “Monster”? Much too early to say but teenager Tsutomu (Jin) Sasaki has been getting plenty of attention as he stacks up the inside the distance wins. He dropped Miyazaki to his knees with a thumping right to the head. Miyazaki got to his feet but was then battered from all angles before left uppercut dumped him on to the ropes and then down to the floor. The 19-year old East Japan Rookie of the Year turned pro at 17 after only being 1-3 in amateur fights but has scored eight wins inside the distance with this being his third opening round win in a row. Much too early to say how far he can go but worth watching. Poor Miyazaki has won just one of his last eleven fights.
Fight of the week (Significance): Javier Fortuna’s win over Antonio Lozada keeps him in place for a shot at the WBC title.
Fight of the week (Entertainment): Conor Benn and Sebastian Formella went to war for ten rounds.
Fighter of the week: Conor Benn for his much improved performance
Punch of the week: The brutal left hook from Jameson Bacon that had Roque Junco out cold the moment it landed and honourable mention for the right to the head from Fabio Wardley that finished Richard Lartey
Upset of the week: None
Prospect watch: O’Shaquie Foster 18-2 looked good in stopping Miguel Roman
A memory of Antonio Margarito as O’Shaquie Fosters’ trainer examined the gloves Miguel Roman was to use and found some padding had been removed. New gloves and the fight went on but some questions need answering.
Strange. Two shows scheduled for Tijuana on Saturday. Once postponed on the advice of the local Health Authorities-and the other one goes ahead!
Two shows floored by COVID-19 as the card in Belgium to feature 17-0 Jessy Petitjean was cancelled and a Kings’ Promotions card in Philadelphia cancelled
Tough for fighters everywhere. In Quebec they have a thoroughly sanitised and private gym with great facilities but Public Health forbids its use so they have to train in their backyards which is happening all over.
Earlier today the UK price for the PPV of Anthony Joshua Vs Kubrat was announced, at £24.95. Whilst this price is only for the UK, with DAZN having global on it in their various territories, it has been a sore point with British fans. Afterall we're in a recession, with job losses and the PPV is coming less than 2 weeks before Christmas and at a higher price than usual.
The typical solution is for defenders of PPV to either yell "don't watch it then" or "find a free stream", ignoring the bigger issues at hand.
For once I'm not here to talk about the good or bad of PPV, something I've spoken about so many times in the past. Instead I'm here to talk to the hardcore fans who want to watch fights and want to support the sport. Today I'm not here to tell you where to get free streams for Jsohua Vs Pulev, or not to pay for it, or how watch an international feed. Instead I'm here to promote some free streams for events from through out Asia. Once again showing that you can follow the sport, and enjoy fights without opening your wallet.
And seriously for those wanting boxing in coming weeks there is a lot of free content out there, that you don't need to jump through hoops for.
The free boxing run begins tomorrow from the Philippines with an interesting card from Sanman promotions under the name "The Restart", which will be their first show since boxing was allowed back in the country.
The main event here will see former WBO Bantamweight champion Marlon Tapales (33-3, 16) battle against Eden Sonsona (36-11-2, 13) with a supporting bout featuring former 2-time world title challenger Aston Palicte (26-4-1, 22) battling Reymark Taday (10-12-1, 5). The card will also feature Joey Canoy (15-4-1, 8) and the very promising Dave Apolinario (13-0, 8)
This will be available for free over Sanman Promotion's Facebook page.
On November 23rd we have two options from Japan one for an event in Osaka and one for a card in Tokyo.
Of the two it's the Osakan event this is, by far, the more attractive featuring two different parts.
The main event for the first part will see former multi-time world champion Katsunari Takayama (31-8-0-1, 12) take on 2-time world title challenger Reiya Konishi (17-2, 7).
The second part of the event will see a supporting bout between former world title challenger Sho Ishida (28-2, 15) and Japanese Youth Bantamweight champion Toshiya Ishii (3-0, 2). As well as that interesting match up we'll also have title action as Riku Kano (16-4-1, 8) clashes with Ryoki Hirai (12-6-1, 4) for the vacant WBO Asia Pacific Light Flyweight title.
For fans wanting to watch this one we've got the embedded live stream below thanks to TV Osaka
The show from Tokyo is a much smaller event being between hard hitting youngster Jin Sasaki (8-0, 7) and Tatsuya Miyazaki (9-13-1, 9). Another notable bout on this card will see the always fun to watch Ryugo Ushijima (4-1-2, 2) take on veteran Hyuma Fujioka (10-10-1, 1)
If this is the show you want to watch a free stream will be put on by the promoter via the A-Sign.boxing.com YouTube channel. This is again free and watching it is supporting the sport, the promoter and the fighters.
If a world title fight is what you require to be interested in a fight then November 27th will be a day to circle with the "Bloodline Battle" between Wanheng Menayothin (54-0, 18) and Panya Pradabsri (34-1, 22), for Wanheng's WBC Minimumweight title, being made available online for free.
It's expected that this will be available on Petchyindee's Facebook page, who typically show stream their events. If not Channel 7 can typically be streamed through officials means here through their website, though a Thai VPN may be needed.
Staying with Thailand just a day after Wanheng looks to go to 55-0 we'll see 16 year old sensation Phoobadin Yoohanngoh (9-0, 5) defending a regional title against Atchariya Wirojanasunobol (13-0, 5) for free on Thairath.
The show, which will be promoted by TL Promotions under their "The Fighter" banner, is usually streamed by the promoter on their Facebook page however options also include an official stream via the TV company, Thairath, who have a live stream on their website.
On November 29th we get something a little bit special as Seki-chan, a boxing die hard in Japan, has actually paid out of his own pocket to attain the rights for a 2-part show in Kariya. The shows aren't big, but for those wanting to talk about "supporting boxing" they are perhaps the clearest example of grassroot support of professional boxing out there. The idea a fan can buy the rights for a show and share them internationally is just amazing, and a great sign of what boxing fans can do for the sport.
The most noteworthy bouts here are a clash between Shin Tomita (10-8-2) and Naoya Haruguchi (17-11, 7) and a bout between the always fun to watch Ryosuke Maruki (16-7-1, 11) and Tsunehiko Aitoku (5-9-2).
For fans interested in this part 1 will be here
and part 2 will be here
Back in Thailand again here as WP Boxing put on their next show, and this will be available over WP Boxing's Facebook and YouTube channels. This show will be a double header with Apichet Petchmanee (7-0, 2) re-matching Musheg Adoian (7-2, 7), after their controversial first bout, and will also see once beaten prospect Phongsaphon Panyakum (10-1, 5) take on former world champion Kompayak Porpramook (60-10, 41).
For Facebook the stream will be here and for those wanting to watch on YouTube the stream will be on here.
We get more free boxing the day after the Joshua Vs Pulev bout Shinsei Gym put on a show. This will feature Yumi Narita (4-4-3, 1) and Mont Blanc Miki (4-3-1, 1) battling over the Japanese female Minimumweight title live on YouTube and an excellent 8 round match up between Yuki Yonaha (7-3-1, 5) and Motoki Osanai (4-2, 1). This will be shown live on the Boxing Real YouTube channel and should be a really high quality stream, given other Boxing Real streams.
On November 27th we'll get a real rarity as we see an All-Thai world title bout between WBC Minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin (54-0, 18) and the once beaten Petchmanee CP Freshmart (34-1, 22). The bout will only be the 13th time that two Thai's have faced off in a major world title fight, and will be the first in over a decade!
With that in mind we've decided to take a look at the 12 that we've had, look at the winners, the losers, the match ups and what those bouts really meant.
Interestingly in Thailand the bouts are referred to by a phrase that translated into English as "Bloodline Battles" and with that in mind we'll also be going with that phrase. Partly because it's an awesome phrase, partly out of respect, and partly because it's better than anything we could come up with ourselves!
Chartchai Chionoi vs Puntip Keosuriya - July 26th 1967
For the first Bloodline Battle we need to go all the way back to 1967 when the legendary Chartchai Chionoi was the Ring Magazine Flyweight champion, having beaten Walter McGowan for the title the previous December in a sensational fight. He was also recognised by the EBU and the BBBofC as the world champion. Chartchai's first defense of that Flyweight world title reign saw him go up against fellow Thai Puntip Keosuriya in Bangkok.
Chartchai was the second Thai to win a world title, following Pone Kingpetch, and made his first defense by stopping Puntip in the 3rd round, giving him what was reportedly his first and only stoppage loss* (See notes). This would ultimately be Puntip's final bout before he hung them up and went to study in the US and ended up working for the Telephone Organisation of Thailand, and then stting up business for himself.
Despite Puntip retiring after this loss Chartchai would go on to fight through to 1975 being involved in some amazing contests. They included a rematch with Walter McGowan, a bloody 3 fight series with Efren Torres, a bout with the legendary Masao Oba and 2 subsequent reigns as the WBA champion. Notably one of his bouts after this one saw him battle fellow former world champion Berkrerk Chartvanchai, though by then neither man was a world champion.
Khaosai Galaxy v Kongtoranee Payakaroon - January 26th 1988
Khaosai Galaxy v Kongtoranee Payakaroon - January 26th 1988
It would be more than 20 years later before we got the second Bloodline bout, and it featured another legendary Thai, and a big dose of controversy!
Coming in to the bout we had Khaosai Galaxy, the legendary southpaw, as the WBA Super Flyweight champion. He had held that title since since November 1984, when he beat Eusebio Espinal for the vacant title, and had reeled off 6 defenses in 3 years, all by stoppage, before facing fellow Thai Kongtoranee Payakaroon. The then 12-1 Kongtoranee was the brother of the legendary Samart Payakaroon and was getting his second world title fight, following a loss to the sensational Gilberto Roman in 1986 for the WBC Super Flyweight title.
The bout was a really interesting one and saw Galaxy pressing, pressuring and coming forward through out, but round after round Payakaroon's movement, counter punching and ring IQ showed it's self. Galaxy was actually dropped in round 5, and had no answer for the quicker man at times. Although always dangerous Galaxy struggled to land with any consistency and was often chasing Payakaroon, who landed consistently with single shots. Despite Payakaroon looking the better man the judges all favoured Galaxy, giving him his 7th defense of the title and extending his reign.
Notably this was the first time that Galaxy had defended the belt over the 12 round distance, with his other defenses being scheduled for the 15 round distance, which may have played a part in the way the bout was fought.
After this bout Payakaroon retired from professional boxing and returned to his previous sport, Muay Thai. As for Galaxy, he would go on to record another 12 defenses of the title and retired as the champion in 1992, before later being inducted into the IBHOF in 1999.
Muangchai Kittikasem vs Sot Chitalada I - February 15th 1991
Interestingly there were 5 Bloodline Battles in the 1990's. The first of those came in February 1991 when we got the first, of two, bouts between Muangchai Kittikasem and Sot Chitalada, with this taking place in Ayutthaya.
Coming in to this one Sot Chitalada was the WBC, and Lineal, Flyweight champion. He was enjoying his second reign as the champion and had made 4 defenses, including one over Korean great Jung Koo Chang in November 1990. Muangchai Kittikasem on the other hand was a former IBF Light Flyweight champion who was looking to become a 2-weight champion after losing his previous title to Michael Carbajal in July 1990. He wasn't just looking to become a multi-weight champion, but the first from Thailand.
The bout was something special, though was dominated by Muangchai who dropped Sot in rounds 1 and 4, and was rocked himself in round 4. In round 6 Muangchai closed the show, letting shots fly at Sot who was left defenseless on the ropes, forcing the referee to step in.
Given the nature of this bout, and their subsequent rematch, we won't talk about what became of the two men after this one, because they would clash again a year later, but this was a real fun fight.
Muangchai Kittikasem vs Sot Chitalada II - February 28th 1992
Having become Thailand's first 2-weight world champion in February 1991 Muangchai Kittikasem gave Sot Chitalada a chance to reclaim the WBC Flyweight title the following year. This time Muangchai was entering the bout seeking his third defense of the title, following an instant classic in his first defense against Jung Koo Chang and a close majority decision win in his second against Alberto Jimenez. Following his loss in the first bout Sot bounced back with 3 low key wins, building his confidence before getting in with his countryman for the second time.
For this bout we were at the rather unique Crocodile Farm in Samut Prakan, and this time things were more competitive than they were in their first bout. It was as if Sot knew, win or lose, his career didn't have much longer left in it.
From the off this was technical, but exciting. Both guys looked to set things up correctly, but it seemed like it was only ever going to take one mistake, from either guy, for things to catch fire. Credit however goes to Muangchai for taking control for stretches of it with his long, rapier like jab. As the bout went on we began to see the touch paper being lit and the fight becoming more action packed, and being a technical war. In round 7 Kittikasem was deducted for headclashes, but it mattered not to the result. In round 9 he managed to rock the champion, buckling his knees, with the referee stepping in.
This would be Sot's final bout. He hung them up after this loss. As for Muangchai he would lose the title 4 months later to Russian legend Yuri Arbachakov, a loss in a rematch to Arbachakov saw Muangchai leave the sport for 2 years, before picking up 3 wins. He then left the sport for several years, before a one off comeback in 1999, losing to Shigeru Nakazato before retiring for good.
Daorung Chuwatana vs Vichit Lapmee - May 27th 1995
Just over 3 years after the rematch between Muangchai and Sot we got the next Bloodline Battle, which pit the then WBA Bantamweight champion Daorung Chuwatana against unbeaten challenger Vichit Lapmee.
The talented, though now often forgotten Daorung, won the WBA title in July 1994, when he beat John Michael Johnson and made a defense 4 months later against Korean challenger In Shik Go. He then took part in his first "Bloodline Battle" as he took on the then unbeaten Vichit Lapmee. At the time Daorung was 55-5-2 (33) and 26 years old, very much in his prime. Vichit on the other hand was 23 years old and sported an 11-0 (8) record.
Although on paper a total mismatch Vichit had reportedly been a solid Muay Thai fighter and was much, much more advanced than a typical 11-0 fight. That showed when he got in the ring as a professional boxer and was fast tracked to a world title fight thanks to early career wins over Dan Nietes and Visuth Chuvatana. He showed how good he was against Daorung as he earned a 12 round split decision draw with the champion. Sadly this would be his only world title fight. The result saw Daorung record his second defense of the title and extend his reign for a little bit longer.
We've got to speak about what happened to Daorung shortly, however this is Vichit's only Bloodline Battle and what happened to him afterwards is worth noting. He ended up fighting through to 2006, going unbeaten before ending his career with a 27-0-2 (18) record. Sadly in his ring success was marred by an arrest for drug offenses, that kept him out of the ring for the better part of a decade. Had he not had those issues, we really do wonder what his career could have brought between 1998 and 2005.
Daorung Chuwatana vs Veeraphol Sahaprom - September 17th 1995
Just months after his first Bloodline Battle Daorung Chuwatana had his second, as he then took on professional novice Veeraphol Sahaprom, a former Muay Thai great who had a rocket strapped to his back when he turned to professional boxing.
Dur to the draw against Vichit we saw Daorung enter the bout with a 55-5-3 (33) record. He had as many draws as Veeraphol had career bouts, with the challenger entering the bout with a 3-0 (3) record. Sahaprom had only been a professional for 9 months, debuting the previous December and had just 18 rounds of professional experience to his name. His Muay Thai pedigree was incredibly, but this was still an insane match up for such a novice.
Sadly for Daorung he would go on to lose to his countryman here, losing a debated decision to the new, young, upstart who had announced himself on the world stage. This saw Daorung become a world champion in just his 4th bout, 1 off the record held by compatriot Saensak Muangsurin, who amazingly won a world title in his third pro-bout.
Interestingly Daorung would go on to reclaim the title just 13 months later, beating Nana Yaw Konadu for the belt. Konadu had taken it from Veeraphol in Veeraphol's first defense. Sadly for Daorung this reign wasn't a long one, and he lost the title in a rematch with Konadu just 8 months later.
Despite losing the belt in his first defense that wasn't the end of Veeraphol, not by a long shot! In 1998 he won the WBC title, beating Japanese legend Joichiro Tatsuyoshi and would held the title until 2005, making a brilliant 14 defenses of the title before losing the belt to Hozumi Hasegawa. A rematch with Hasegawa saw Veeraphol fail to recapture the title but he was still in the mix all the way up to 2008, losing in an eliminator to Vusi Malinga. His professional career came to an end in 2010, at the age of 41!
Sompoch Harnvichachai vs Kaaj Chartbandit - March 1st 1998
One of the most obscure and low profile Bloodline battles came in 1998 when Sompoch Harnvichachai, the then WBA Light Flyweight title, took on the relatively limited Kaaj Chartbandit, also known as Pornchai Techasinchai or Pornchai Hadao CP. This is one that we suspect few heard of and unfortunately was the final Bloodline Battle of the 1990's.
Coming in Sompoch was looking to make his second defense. He took the the title in December 1996, defeating Keiji Yamaguchi, and made his first defense around 7 months later, beating Sang Chul Lee. That win saw the 22 year old Sompoch move to 18-1 (9). Kaaj on the other hand was a 30 year old challenger sporting a 39-10-1 (11) record. The challenger had fought at a high level before, but not successfully, fighting to a draw with Leo Gamez back in 1994. Kaaj's record was misleading, and he had gone 21-0-1 (5) in his last 22 fights, but on paper he was still a less than stellar challenger.
In the ring Sompoch was too good for his countryman and took a very clear 12 round decision over Kaaj, barely losing a round.
Following the bout Kaaj would fight just once more, losing by stoppage, in 3 rounds, to Medgoen Singsurat just 15 months before Medgoen stopped Manny Pacquiao for the WBC Flyweight, giving Pacquiao his second professional loss.
As for Sompoch he would go on to make 3 more defenses before he was stripped of the title for failing to defend against Rosendo Alvarez in 2000. He would face Alvarez as the challenger in 2002 but come up short against the Nicaraguan, being stopped in the 12th round. His career would continue on until 2007 when he beat Yuki Murai and retired from the sport in his early 30's.
Sadly this was to be the last Bloodline Battle for almost a decade as boxing in Thailand really did go through a bit of a downturn. There was a lack of big name Thai's to act as challengers and a real lack of long term champions for them to face anyway. There were some exceptions, but there wasn't enough to make a Bloodline Battle make sense.
Eagle Den Junlaphan Vs Oleydong Sithsamerchai - November 29th 2007
After a lengthy wait we saw a surge of bloodline battles between 2007 and 2010. The first of those was a big of an oddity with Eagle Den Junlaphan, the then WBC Minimumweight champion, taking on Oleydong Sithsamerchai. This was a really interesting match up for so many reasons.
At the time Den enjoying his second reign as the WBC Minimumweight champion and the highly skilled Thai was looking to make his 4th defense of the title. Although he was a Thai he had carved out his career in Japan and hadn't even fought in Thailand since his 5th professional bout. Since then he gone 13-1 (4) in Japan to compile a career record off 18-1 (6). In the opposite corner was the then 24-0 (9) Oleydong Sithsamerchai, a man who had fought only in Thailand.
With neither man having much power it was likely no surprise to learn that this one went the distance! Throughout the bout the 28 year old Champion seemed the aggressor, coming forward and pressing the action. He was, however, outsped by the 22 year old challenger who looked crisper, more energetic, and sharper, taking a narrow win over the champion.
Sadly this would end Den's career and he would retire from the sport citing a lack of support and being bored with the sport. It seemed very much like he took this fight to try and get the juices going, but it failed. Interestingly he would become a Japanese citizen and lay down roots in Japan.
As for Oleydong, well we need to talk about him more, and this was the first of 3 Bloodline Battles for the "Deadly Candy".
Oleydong Sithsamerchai Vs Pornsawan Porpramook I - November 27th 2008
After winning the WBC Minimumweight title with his win over Den Junlaphan we saw Oleydong go on a lengthy and genuinely notable reign as the WBC Minimumweight champion. In his second defense of the title he was in another Bloodline Battle as he took on Pornsawan Porpramook just a year after winning the title.
At this point the 23 year old Oleydong was 23 years old and boasted a solid looking 28-0 (12) record, but he really needed a notable win to solidify his title reign. Pornsawan on the other hand was old for a Minimumweight, at 30, and boasted a 21-1 (16). The challenger's record looked good on paper but lacked quality wins and the most notable result on his record was his 2007 loss to Donnie Nietes for the WBO title.
The talented, young, fresh faced Oleydong had no problems here. He was too quick, too sharp and too good for the older challenger. To his credit Pornsawan never gave up, and repeatedly came forward, looking to make things testing and tough for the champion, but ended up losing a very wide and clear decision. This was a win that helped legitimise Oleydong as a world class fighter and was soon followed by wins over Muhammad Rachman and Juan Palacios, further solidifying his reign.
Oleydong Sithsamerchai Vs Pornsawan Porpramook II - September 3rd 2010
Almost two years after their first bout Oleydong and Pornsawan faced off in a rematch and this one one was something else. It was dramatic, exciting and gruelling, compared to their first, which was one sided.
Before we get to the in ring action it's worth noting what thee two men had done between the bouts. As mentioned a few moments ago Oleydong had legitimised his reign with wins against the likes of Rachman and Palacious, and had extended his record to 34-0 (12). He was starting to string together a solid reign and was getting his name recognised by hardcore fans, who were seeing him compile a long run of wins. He was actually close in on the then 40-0 Floyd Mayweather Jr. Pornsawan on the other hand had been stopped by Edgar Sosa and had picked up just a single, low key win over a domestic opponent.
This was expected to be another clear win for Oleydong. Things however didn't go to plan, and instead Pornsawan would go on to give the unbeaten champion real trouble. Oleydong would be dropped in round 6 and had struggled to make weight, which resulted in him really unable to perform to his best. Despite the issues, and an apparent leg injury which took much of his movement, he managed to grit it out and earn a draw to retain his title. This would go on to be his final successful defense of the title.
Around 5 months after this bout Oleydong travelled to Japan to take on the then 6-0 Kazuto Ioka, and was stopped by the rising Japanese star. An attempt to reassert himself at Super Flyweight, showing just how much weight he'd been cutting, seemed promising but Oleydong never really managed to get things going at his new weight. As we write this the 35 year old looks to have hung them up with 69-2-1 (29) record.
As for Pornsawan he bounced back from this disappointment to score a career defining win in Indonesia in 2011, beating Muhammad Rachman to claim the WBA Minimumweight title. Sadly his reign was a short one, lasting less than 3 months as he lost the belt in his first defense, to Akira Yaegashi in a sensational bout. He would attempt to recapture the WBA belt in 2012, but lose again in a tremendous bout in Japan to Ryo Miyazaki, then end his career after a 2013 loss to Rey Loreto, hanging up the gloves with a 28-6-1 (17) record.
Pongsaklek Wonjongkam Vs Suriyan Sor Rungvisai - October 8th 2010
Just over a month after we'd got the rematch between Oleydong and Pornsawan we got another Bloodline Battle, and it was a genuine great one in what nearly becam a passing of the torch bout. In one corner was a 33 year living legend, enjoying his second reign as the champion of the world, whilst the other corner played host to a 21 year old unknown challenger, who later carved out a really solid career of his own.
The champion in question was Pongsaklek Wonjongkam, who was sporting a 76-3-1 (39) record. He had had a long and lengthy reign as the WBC Flyweight champion from 2001 to 2007, making 17 defenses, and then re-captured the title in 2010 when he upset Koki Kameda in Japan. At 33 he was an old Flyweight and had 80 bouts to his name. Suriyan Sor Rungvisai on the other hand was just 21 and had an underwhelming record of 14-3-1 (4). On paper this was supposed to be an easy one for Pongsaklek. He was old, but this wasn't supposed to be a test.
Oh boy were people wrong! This was tough for the champion, really tough. Suriyan proved to be quick, sharp and really tough. He boxed brilliantly for such a youngster, showed ring IQ well beyond his years and fought to his strengths. He knew he was quicker, younger and fresher and used that to his advantage, often beating Wonjongkam to the punch. Suriyan also showed real guts, and despite puking up at one point in the fight he gutted it out and ran Wonjongkam all the way in a technical and compelling match up.
Sadly for Wonjongkam this was one of his final defenses. He would defend the belt just 3 more times before being shocked by Sonny Boy Jaro in 2012, a year that also saw him lose to Rey Megrino. His career fizzled out the following year, before a short, and somewhat peculiar, comeback in 2018. On his return he beat Manot Comput, to try and comply with licensing rules in Japan. The JBC refused to license him and instead he ended up fighting an exhibition with Koki Kameda, who had been hoping to avenge his 2010 loss to. Thankfully that is likely to be the last time we see Wonjongkam in the ring, and his career tally of 91-5-2 (47) is likely to be his final record.
As for Suriyan his career really took off after this bout. Less than a year after this loss he beat Tomas Rojas, to claim the WBC Super Flyweight title, which he defended against the tough Nobuo Nashiro. Sadly though his reign came to an end in 2012 when he was dropped twice by Yota Sato on route to a clear loss. In the years that followed Suriyan would become a leading Bantamweight contender, and gave Shinsuke Yamanaka a tough bout in 2014 and later faced Anselmo Moreno in 2016. He fought through to 2017 before ending his in ring career with a 49-7-1 (25) record
Kwanthai Sithmorseng Vs Pigmy Kokietgym - November 5th 2010
Amazingly it's now more than 10 years since the last Bloodline Battle, with the last one coming in November 2010. Weirdly it was the third in successive months in 2010 and it feels odd not to have had another world title bout between Thai's since! Despite that this is one we've not been able to find full video of, and can't really say too much about, despite it being the most recent.
The bout pitted the unbeaten Kwanthai Sithmorseng, then a 28 year old with a 28-0-1 (16) record, against the 29 year old Pigmy Kokietgym, then 42-5-2 (18) in a bout for the vacant WBA Minimumweight title. The title had become vacant after Roman Gonzalez decided to move up in weight and make a mark on the Light Flyweight, and the belt was then left to the Thai Thai's to battle for. On paper neither of the men had really done enough to deserve a world title fight, but both had good looking records and their wasn't much competition at 105lbs at the time, giving us this bout for the vacant belt.
As mentioned there isn't full fight footage of this one, at least that we've managed to find, though reports from the venue and the scorecards show this was a super close bout, with Kwanthai taking a razor thin split decision. This really was over-shadowed by the other two Bloodline Battles from earlier the year, and get the attention they did.
Sadly Kwanthai would lose the title 5 months later, in his first defense, losing to the then 39 year old Muhammad Rachman. Despite his short reign Kwanthai manage to get numerous opportunities afterwards, facing the likes of Kazuto Ioka, Kohei Kono and Ryoichi Taguchi in world title bouts. As we write this we're not 100% his career is over, but he has been inactive since June 2019. He's fallen a lot from being 29-0-1 to being 49-7-1, and at 38 we hope he hangs them up now.
Amazingly Pigmy's career has continued on to this day, and he fought earlier this month. Before we get to that however it should be noted that he's not had the same numerous opportunites that Kwanthai has. He has only had one world title bout since this loss, losing to Hekkie Budler in 2014 in Monaco. Since then he has become a bit of a global journeyman losing in Japan, China and even England. Earlier this month he was almost gutted by talented hopeful Thananchai Charunphak, and fell to 61-14-2 (25)
Wanheng Menayothin Vs Panya Pradabsri - November 27th 2020
On November 27th we get the first Bloodline Battle in over a decade. Regardless of the result this is a huge bout for Thai boxing, and a huge chance for Thailand to grab the attention of the boxing world. This might not be the Bloodline Battle that fans worldwide have called for, but it's great to finally see another all-Thai world title bout.
In regards to statistics Bloodline battles have given us:
10 bouts going to the judges
9 successful defenses
3 T/KO's (the latest of which was in 1992)
3 new champions being crowned (including 1 from a bout for a vacant title)
2 title changes
and 0 unification bouts
*Note - According the Thai sources Puntip's only stoppage came to Chartchai and that he retired 5-6-1 (2), not 7-6-1 (4) as Boxrec list him, and it appears that his KO6 loss to Voravit S Pichitchai, as listed on boxrec, isn't recognised in Thailand. As with many Thai's his record certainly isn't clear
Every so often we end up with a bout that really deserves a lot more attention than it gets, and today we look at one of those bouts. In fact we look at a bout that helped boost the career of one of the most exciting men of the 1990's, and was a bout that saw East and West collide as a Japanese world champion faced an Irish challenger in what was a great battle in Nagoya.
Yasuei Yakushiji (24-2-1, 16) Vs Wayne McCullough (16-0, 13)
Japanese fighter Yasuei Yakushiji was a major player in the Bantamweight scene in the early 1990's. He had won the WBC Bantamweight title in 1993 when he was a replacement for Joichiro Tatsuyoshi, and beat Korean Jung Il Byun. The decision over Byun was regarded as a robbery, even in Japan, leading to a rematch in July 1994, which Yakushiji won by 11th round TKO. That lead to a bout between Yakushiji and Tatsuyoshi, which was a massive fight in 1994. Yakushiji narrowly over-came the hugely popular Tatsuyoshi to record his third defense, and unify the WBC and WBC "interim" titles. An close decision win over Cuauhtemoc Gomez followed for his 4th title defense before he took on unbeaten Irishman Wayne McCullough. By this point Takushiji was getting a reputation for getting the nod in close decisions. It was clear he was a talented, tough, fit, hungry fighter, but also a very flawed one who relied on his toughness and stamina, and not his skills.
In 1992 Wayne McCullough had represented Ireland at the Olmpics, and had won an Olmypic silver medal. Followinf that he turned professional, doing so in Las Vegas, and had won his first 16 bouts, including a solid win over former Tatsuyoshi opponent Victor Rabanales. In the ring McCullough was a talented boxer, as had been seen from his performance in the Olmypics, and had adapted quickly to the professional scene. He had proven himself to be a solid puncher, with an amazing engine and a sensational chin. It was always going to take a top level fighter to beat him due to his work rate and toughness, and it was hard to think of many fighters who match him punch for punch. On paper this was a step up from the fighters he had been facing in the professional ranks, it was also seen as a big chance for him to make a name for himself. Sadly though he knew he was up against it with the fight coming in Nagoya, where Yakushiji was a star.
Given both guys could take a shot, both could fight at a solid pace and both had respectable power this looked good on paper. Even if we were expecting potentially dodgy scorecards it still looked like we were going to get something very special.
Straight from the off this was starting fast with McCullough fighting like a man who knew he had to impress the judges and make every round clear. Yakushuji on the other hand tried to respond to the high tempo that McCullough was setting, and as a result we had some brilliant back and forth through the opening round. This wasn't crude brawling but was aggressive, exciting and thrilling boxing. Things were, for the most part, being thrown properly, jabs were being used to set up other shots and the pace of everything looked like it was being shown in fast forward. This looked less like a real life fight and more like a fight from a movie.
Of course after 2 fast rounds at an insane pace we would have expected the action to slow down, and whilst it did it wasn't the typical "slow down" that we would expect and it was still a high tempo war. Round after round, after round, we just waited for a man to make a mistake as the other looked to unload, giving us some absolutely insane exchanges. For the most part it was the challenger coming forward and letting his shots to go and Yakushiji trying to use his feet, but when they both let their hands go we were getting sparks of something truly fantastic with both desperate to land the last blow in an exchange.
For those who haven't seen this this is really worth a watch. A brilliant yet forgot instant classic between two men who had styles and hunger that made for something fantastic!
Following this bout Yakushiji would retire whilst McCullough would go on to have an excellent career, marred by a long battle out of the ring with the BBBofC regarding a brain scan. He would later release his autobiography "Pocket Rocket: Don't Quit" which is an interesting and insightful read and become a trainer. Yakushiji on the other hand opened up a gym in Japan.
By Eric Armit
-Terrence Crawford Stops Kell Brook in three rounds to retain the WBO welterweight title
-Huge controversy over No Decision ruling in the WBA super flyweight title fight between Joshua Franco and Andrew Moloney
-Denzel Bentley gets injury win over Mark Heffron in their return fight for the British title
-The 6’8 ½” German Christian Thun and Cuban Jose Larduet get wins in heavyweight action
-Prospects Tyler Howard, Ray Muratalla and Duke Ragan victorious in Las Vegas
World Title/Major Shows
Las Vegas, NV, USA: Welter: Terrence Crawford (37-0) W TKO 4 Kell Brook (39-3). Super Fly: Joshua Franco (17-1-2,1ND) ND 2 Andrew Moloney (21-1,1ND). Bantam: Joshua Greer (22-2-2) DRAW 8 Edwin Rodriguez (11-5-2). Middle: Tyler Howard (19-0) W PTS 8 KeAndrae Leatherwood (22-8-1). Light: Ray Muratalla (11-0) W TKO 3 Luis Porozo (15-5). Feather: Duke Ragan (3-0) W PTS 4 Sebastian Gutierrez (1-1).
Crawford vs. Brook
Another imperious performance from Crawford as after a slow start he finished Brook in the third.
A round in which neither fighter committed himself to even throwing purposeful jabs. Both were tentative and one strong left jab which stopped Crawford in his tracks was enough for Brook to take the low action round.
Score: 10-9 Brook
Once again a cautious start from both fighters. Brook connected with his jab early. Late in the round Crawford clipped Brook with a right to the head but jabbing from Brook just gave him the edge.
Score: 10-9 Brook Brook 20-18
There was more action in this one as Crawford went on the offensive. Brook landed some good right counters but Crawford ended the round strongly with some punches inside to take the round.
Score:10-9 Crawford Brook 29-28
After some early sparring as Brook walked in throwing a right Crawford slammed a right jab to the head of Brook who stumble sideways across the ring and half way out through the ropes. Brook disentangled himself from the ropes but as he was doing so Crawford landed three heavy punches before the referee jumped in and gave Brook a standing count. When the action resume Crawford banged home heavy punches to the head from both hands and Brook fell back into the ropes and the referee stepped in and stopped the fight
Crawford retains the WBO title. The three-division champion from Omaha is now 15-0 in world title fights with his eighth consecutive inside the distance win. The mark of a great champion. He now wants Manny Pacquiao and it would be a great reward for Crawford for the brilliant career he has had so far. I honestly think it would be a bad move for Pacquiao as I feel he would then end his career with a loss but if there is enough money then it might happen. If not then Errol Spence is the fight every boxing fan should be rooting for. This may be the end for Brook. He looked very sharp for the first three rounds but fell apart quickly under Crawford’s punches. If he does retire then winning a world title and in 42 fights losing only to the best of the best in Gennady Golovkin, Errol Spence and Crawford is something he can be proud of.
Franco vs. Moloney
Franco retains the WBA title on a No Decision it being adjudged that damage to his right eye that prevented him from continuing after the second round was caused by a clash of heads. A hugely controversial decision which looked to be a basic injustice as the video replays showed no such clash and instead clearly showed punches from Moloney that started and increased the swelling
Sparkling opening round from Moloney. He was constantly moving stabbing out quick accurate and solid jabs through the middle of Franco’s guard and connecting with rights to the body. Franco was moving forward in a straight line and too slow to counter effectively.
Score: 10-9 Moloney
In the break Franco was getting treatment for a swelling under his right eye and that eye was already starting to close. Again Moloney was too quick for the static Franco scoring with his jab and quick bursts of punches. The referee halted the action half way through the round and asked the doctor to examining the effect of the swelling and although the eye was virtually closed the doctor allowed the fight to continue.
Score: 10-9 Moloney Moloney 20-18
Before the start of the third round the doctor examined Franco again and decided that Franco could not continue. Initially it looked as though Moloney was going to be declared the winner on a stoppage but then it was ruled a No Decision. The Nevada officials went to the replay official and after about 25 minutes they reported they had seen significant head clashes in the first round and confirmed the No Decision ruling. The replay did not seem to show any significant head clashes in the opening round but did show a solid jab that thudded on to the right eye of Franco with the swelling showing immediately and Moloney connected with a left hook and more jabs to the same point under Franco’s right eye. Continual replays showed no clash of heads that could have caused the swelling and in fact when Moloney did move inside his head landed on the left shoulder of Franco. The TV people watched and showed the first round over and over and totally disagreed with the decision and Bob Arum was absolutely incensed at Moloney being robbed of his victory. The problem will now be dumped into the laps of the WBA who at the very least must order a return match with parity on the purse split but that is small consolation for Moloney who looked to have gained revenge for the loss of his title to Franco in June but boxing also gets a black eye from this injustice.
Greer vs. Rodriguez
Another disappointing performance from Greer as he needs a big finish to earn a draw with Rodriguez. Greer was much the better boxer but he just did not work hard enough and faded in and out of the fight. That allowed Rodriguez to build a lead and Greer had to sweep the last two rounds for the draw. Scores 76-76 twice and 77-75 for Rodriguez. Greer had a 19-bout winning streak snapped in a points loss to Mike Plania in June so he should have been looking to make a statement here but instead has some hard thinking to do. Facing Greer marked a change for Rodriguez as his last five opponents had all been unbeaten with Rodriguez a respectable 3-1-1 in those five contests.
Howard vs. Leatherwood
This was not a good night for some of the favoured fighters on the undercard. Howard also struggled in what should have been a routine win for the younger man. Leatherwood made the better start putting Howard on the back foot and with Howard cut in a clash of heads in the second things were not going Howard’s way. He did better over the second half of the fight being helped when a tiring Leatherwood lost a point for continually holding in the sixth. It was anyone’s fight going into the eighth with the fighters being level on two cards. Howard pulled off the win by dropping Leatherwood with a body punch to win on scores of 77-73, 76-74 and 77-75. The 26-year-old Tennessee “Hercules” will learn from this one and come back stronger. Leatherwood has been matched tough with Andy Lee, Caleb Truax, Steve Rolls and Christian Mbilli all registering wins over the man from Tuscaloosa.
Muratalla vs. Porozo
Muratalla too quick, slick and powerful for Porozo. Muratalla used aggression and quick hands to take the first round but the best punch was a right to the head from Porozo to let Muratalla know he was in a fight. Muratalla repaid Porozo in the second shaking him with a fast accurate four-punch combination and scoring with a hurtful right to the body. Muratalla connected with a sweet right uppercut in the third but it was body punches that undid Porozo. Three consecutive strikes from Muratalla’s left hook saw Porozo drop to a knee. He was up at six but had lost his mouthguard so managed some additional recovery time as it was reinserted. When the fight continued Muratalla forced Porozo to the ropes and landed a series of punches that dropped Porozo in a heap in a corner and the fight was stopped. Ninth inside the distance win for the 23-year-old from California and his sixth in a row as he continues to make good progress. Ecuadorian Porozo suffers his fifth loss in his last six fights.
Ragan vs. Gutierrez
Ragan is still new to the pro ranks and has yet to be really tested. He did his job here against the much taller Gutierrez flooring him in the second and winning every round with the scores being 40-35 from the judges. The talented 23-year-old from Cincinnati scored wins over Ruben Villa and Lee McGregor in the amateurs. He could have boxed in Tokyo but instead chose to turn pro. Gutierrez in way over his head.
South Kirkby, England: Super Welter: Tursynbay Kulakhmet (2-0) W PTS 10 Macaulay McGowan (14-1-1). Welter: Jack Rafferty (13-0) W PTS 8 Tom Hill (9-2). Welter: Paddy Donovan (5-0) W PTS 6 Jumaane Camero (10-7).
Kulakhmet vs. McGowan
New Kazak hope Kulakhmet outclasses McGowan. Kulakhmet was in charge from the start putting McGowan under pressure in sweeping the first four rounds. McGowan managed to get into the fight briefly in the fifth but seemed to be fighting only to survive. Kulakhmet floored McGowan with a clubbing right in the seventh but McGowan beat the count and a frustrated Kulakhmet lost a point in the eighth for pushing McGowan to the canvas as the Englishman defied Kulakhmet’s efforts to end the fight early. Scores 99-89 for Kulakhmet on the three cards. The 26-year-old Kulakhmet wins the vacant WBC International title in only his second pro fight. He won a gold medal at the Asian Youth Championships and the Asian Games and a bronze at the World Championships. McGowan was up at ten rounds for the first time and had won his last four fights.
Rafferty vs. Hill
Rafferty starts strongly and finishes strongly to take the referee’s verdict over Hill. This was a hard-fought entertaining fight with both handing out and absorbing some stick as you might expect with two fighters nicknamed “Demolition Man” and “One Bomb” respectively. Referees score 78-75 for Rafferty. A former Elite level amateur Rafferty was in his first eight round contest. Hill was trying to rebuild after a fourth round TKO loss to Ellis Corrie for the BBB of C Northern Area title.
Donovan vs. Camero
Limerick southpaw Donovan takes another move forward as he decision’s Londoner Camero. Donovan showcased some slick skills and accurate counter punching. Camero pressed hard but lacked the power or speed to compete. Referee’s score 60-55 for Donovan. The 21-year-old Andy Lee trained Irishman won a silver medal at the World Junior Championships and gold at the Irish Under-18’s as well as competing at the World and European Youth Championships. Camero had won his last three fights.
London. England: Middle: Denzel Bentley (14-0-1) W RTD 4 Mark Heffron (25-2-1). Middle: Caoimhin Agyarko (8-0) W TKO 7 Robbie Chapman (6-6). Light Heavyweight: Tommy Fury (4-0) W TKO 2 Genadij Krajevskij (0-12).
Bentley vs. Heffron
After fighting to a draw with Heffron in September Bentley wins this return bout as Heffron is forced to retire with his left eye swollen shut. The first round was Heffron’s as he was scoring with jabs to the body and connected with a strong right and a left hook to the body. Heffron was quicker with his jab at the start of the second but then Bentley went on the front foot scored with a thudding right and followed that with succession of hard rights to the head. Bentley found the range with his jab and bombarded Heffron with punches with Heffron in disarray and it was clearly Bentley’s round. Heffron was showing an ugly swelling under his left eye from those rights and already the eye was closing. Bentley targeted the swelling in the third landing some hard crosses there. Heffron scored with good rights and left hooks and finished the round with a fierce attack but time was running out with the swelling growing bit by bit. Bentley found the target with more rights in the fourth with Heffron throwing big punches trying to turn the fight his way but by the end of the round the swelling had closed Heffron’s left eye completely and sensibly he was pulled out of the fight. Bentley, 25, wins the vacant British title and will now be aiming to build on his No 14 rating with the WBO. Heartbreaker for Heffron, 28, having lost to current WBO No 1 Liam Williams for the same vacant British title 2018. The injury spoiled what was sure to have been a fiercely competitive and entertaining fight.
Agyarko vs. Chapman
Impressive performance from Agyarko as he dominates and then stops a willing Chapman. The switch-hitting Agyarko showed early that he had the quicker hands and better skills. He constantly pierced Chapman’s guard with strong jabs and worked well with hooks to the body. He rattled Chapman with a sharp left hook late in the third and with some body shots in the fourth. Chapman was willing to trade when he could particularly in a free swinging fifth but did not have the power to compete. In the seventh a right cross suddenly had Chapman’s legs doing an involuntary dance and Agyarko exploded with a succession of head punches that had Chapman swaying and defenceless and the fight was stopped. The 23-year-old Belfast-based “Black Thunder” gets his fourth consecutive inside the distance win. A former Irish Youth and Senior champion (he boxed as Caoimhin Agyarko Hines) he looks a very good prospect with excellent skills and real power in his punches. He survived a horrendous knife attack in 2017 we he had his throat slashed and had to undergo emergency surgery but was back in the ring within five months and winning trophies. Fifth loss in a row for Chapman who comes to fight and entertain.
Fury vs. Krajevskij
With elder brother Tyson watching Fury blasts out Krajevskij in two rounds. Fury was too quick for the limited Krajevskij in the first. He was stabbing out jabs then moving in quickly with some shots inside. Krajevskij relied on crude rushes and Fury was able to connect with hooks and uppercuts as Krajevskij lunged forward. The second was an untidy round with far too much wrestling but just seconds before the bell Fury connected with a devastating right uppercut that had Krajevskij on the way down with Fury landing three more punches but the right was the finisher. The 21-year-old from Manchester who appeared on the Love island reality show, gets win No 3 by KO/TKO. Although he is Tyson’s brother he is just 6’0” tall. I guess there was not much height left in the family bank when he was born. British-based Lithuanian Krajevskij has yet to win a fight so they were taking no chances with Tommy here.
Benavidez, Argentina: Middle: Alejandro Silva (12-0-1) W Javier Maciel (33-9). Super Light: Jeremias Ponce (26-0) W TKO 1 Ruben Lopez (13-14-4).
Silva vs. Maciel
On this Marcos Maidana promotion Silva took a close unanimous decision over seasoned pro Maciel in a fast-paced, entertaining fight. Silva used hand speed and good movement to outbox Maciel in the opening rounds with Maciel pressing hard and looking the heavier puncher. Silva was moving around Maciel to find angles for his punches with Maciel having success when he could pin Silva to the ropes. In the fifth a left uppercut from Maciel dropped Silva face down on the canvas. It looked over as he did not move for three or four seconds but then pushed to his feet. A combination of movement and holding from Silva and wildly inaccurate punching from Maciel allowed Silva to survive and he was fighting back by the end of the round. From there Silva dominated the action out-manoeuvring and outpunching Maciel and by the end he looked to have won by a wide margin but the Judges had it close. Scores 95-94 twice and a more accurate score of 97-92 all for Silva. The 27-year-old “Raven” is the national champion but his title was not on the line in this fight. He had won 7 of his last 8 fights by KO/TKO but 37-year-old Maciel, who came in as a late substitute, has a strong chin. Maciel lost to Dmitry Pirog in a fight for the WBO middleweight title in 2011 but now fills the role of travelling loser having lost his last three fights on the road.
Ponce vs. Lopez
Ponce stops Lopez in 2:30 of the opening round. Ponce towered over the 5’ 5 ½” Lopez and used his reach to force Lopez onto the back foot. Ponce was stalking Lopez around the ring landing jabs and throwing long rights with Lopez darting in with an occasional burst of punches. When Lopez launched another of his attacks Ponce landed a wicked right to the body. Lopez momentum saw him throw a couple of punches before the pain from the body shot kicked in and he collapsed to his knees. He was up at eight and as boxers often do walked towards a corner with his back to the referee who signalled to the retreating Lopez to turn and raise his gloves. The referee then waived his arms to end the fight as an unbelieving Lopez turned to find the fight was over. He protested bitterly but the decision had been made. The 24-year-old Ponce, the IBO champion, gets his sixteenth inside the distance victory and is rated IBF 7(6). Lopez, 37, is 1-6-1 in his last 8.
Luis Guillon, Argentina: Super Middle: Marcelo Coceres (29-1-1) W PTS 10 Sebastian Papeschi (15-3). Bantam: Luciano Baldor (16-2) W PTS 10 Hector Gusman (15-7). Fly: Junior Zarate (14-2) W PTS 8 Abel Silva (5-6-3).
Coceres vs. Papeschi
Coceres wins a unanimous decision over former South American champion Papeschi. It was southpaw Papeschi who edged the first round but almost met disaster in the second. A left to the head from Coceres put Papeschi down heavily and he only just survived. From there it was a close fight with first one and then the other having periods of dominance but with Coceres holding on to the advantage from the knockdown and just being quicker and more accurate. Scores 97-92, 97 ½ -94 and 96-95 for “El Terrible” Coceres. He was having his first fight since an eleventh round kayo loss to Billy Joe Saunders last November for the WBO super middle title. He gave Saunders a rough night with the scores at the finish being 96-94 twice for Saunders and 96-94 for Coceres. Typically in this cynical sanctioning body world he was parachuted into the WBO ratings at No 10 to qualify for the fight and then promptly thrown overboard and dropped completely from the ratings despite giving Saunders such a hard fight. Papeschi is the No 1 challenger for the Argentinian title
Baldor vs. Gusman
Baldor adds another title to his collection as he decisions Gusman. When they met in a six round fight in June last year Baldor took a wide points decision. No real difference this time. Being 5’ 11 ½” (181cm) Baldor sets a difficult problem for any bantamweight and Gusman never came close to solving it. Baldor was able to score consistently with his jab at distance and also land some tasty right crosses. Gusman could not stay inside long enough to do any damage and his frustration was evident in the tenth when he lost a point for holding. Scores 100-89 for Baldor on all three cards as he gathers win No 10 in a row. He won the vacant WBA Fedebol title to add to the Argentinian and South American titles he already holds. Seven losses in his last eight fight for Senor Gusman.
Zarate vs. Silva
Zarate was also going over old ground as he registered his second points victory over Abel Silva. Zarate came out on top again on scores of 78 ½-75 ½ 77 ½ -75 ½ and 77-76 ½ The 31-year-old “Demon” was a leading light in the amateur ranks in Argentina representing them at the 2007 World Championships and the 2011 Championships where he decisioned future WBC flyweight champion Charlie Edwards. He has struggled a little as a pro but has reversed both of his losses. Silva suffers his sixth consecutive defeat,
Llanquihue, Chile: Super Feather: Junior Cruzat (8-0) W TKO 3 Juan Jimenez (8-10,1ND). A focused body attack from Cruzat disposes of Jimenez inside three rounds. A series of left hooks to the body had Jimenez dropping to one knee in the first. He bounced up and tried to punch with Cruzat but was put down by another left hook to the ribs. He was slower getting up but then went toe-to-toe with Cruzat to the bell. Cruzat continued to score with body punches in the second but Jimenez took the punishment and traded blows throughout the round. More shots to the body forced Jimenez to one knee in the third. After the count Cruzat piled on the punches until Jimenez turned away from the action and walked back to his corner with the referee stopping the fight. Jimenez indicated he had injured his right arm but was taking a beating. The 19-year-old Cruzat signed with Australian Dragon Fire team led by Australian Tony Tolj in May and this is his first fight under that banner. Five losses in a row for Jimenez.
Mantova, Italy: Super Light: Mohamed Khalladi (15-8-1,1ND) W KO 7 Arblin Kaba (12-1). Welter: Tobia Giuseppe Loriga (32-8-3) W PTS 10 Dario Socci (12-6-2,1ND).
Khalladi vs. Kaba
Khalladi registers his second dramatic win in two months as he flattens Kaba in the seventh round. When Andrea Scarpa pulled out of the Italian title fight with Kaba it was a big risk taking Khalladi as a very late substitute after his chilling one punch kayo of Domenico Valentino in September. The risk looked small when Kaba took the fight to Khalladi in his normal aggressive fashion rocking Khalladi in the opener and putting him on the floor in the second. Khalladi beat the count and gradually altered his tactics boxing to create some space and frustrate Kaba’s attacks. Kaba was trying to swing the fight his way in the seventh but as he went to throw a wide right Khalladi beat him to the punch and landed a thunderbolt of a right to the jaw which sent Kaba to the canvas flat on his back and out. Tunisian Khalladi, 32, was a very unimpressive 10-8-1 after losing to Anthony Yigit in February last year but has since won five fights in a row including upset victories over 21-3 Marcello Matano, Valentino and now Italian champion Kaba. The work may dry up if continues to look so dangerous. Kaba’s title was not on the line but that bolt of lightning from Khalladi shattered his unbeaten tag.
Loriga vs. Socci
Loriga retains the Italian title with majority decision over Socci. It might have been expected that the 43-year-old Loriga would start fast and then fade but it worked out the other way. It was Socci who went in front early with some brisk work with his jab and straight rights. He had the edge until pressure from Loriga began to tell from the fourth. He was getting past Socci’s jab to work to the body and gradually took control over the second half of the fight outworking the younger man to take the decision. Scores 96-94 twice for Loriga and 95-95. Loriga has been a pro for 17 years. When he originally launched his career he went 24-0-1 before losing to Julio Cesar Chanez Jr. On the domestic front he has been Italian champion in two divisions and is 4-2-2 in domestic title fights. Socci turned pro in the USA and has also fought in Germany, Mexico, South Africa, the Czech Republic and the UK and in fact this was his first fight in Italy in his eight year career.
Auckland, New Zealand: Super Welter: Andrei Mikhailovich (13-0) W PTS 8 Marcus Heywood (4-3-1). Cruiser: David Light (16-0) W TKO 1 Lance Bryant (12-8). Light: Richie Hadlow (2-0) W PTS 5 Nort Beauchamp (18-3) . Cruiser; John Parker (5-0) W TKO 2 Jason Tuala (2-2).
Mikhailovich vs. Heywood
Mikhailovich wins the vacant New Zealand title with unanimous decision over Heywood. Mikhailovich clearly outscored Heywood over the first two rounds but Heywood came into the fight over the middle rounds to make it close before Mikhailovich finished strongly to take the two closing rounds. Mikhailovich a clear winner but he looked laboured at times. He has done most of his fighting at middleweight and did not seem to have the same power at the lower weight. Now 22 Mikhailovich has a remarkable story. A couple in Auckland watched a documentary on an orphanage in Russia in which baby Mikhailovich and his brother appeared. The New Zealand couple then adopted the two kids and brought them to New Zealand. Heywood was unbeaten in his last four fights.
Light vs. Bryant
“The Great White Shark” continues to gobble up the opposition as he racks up his tenth win by KO/TKO. Light had finished Bryant in two rounds in 2018 this time he blasted Bryant out in the first to retain the national title. The 28-year-old Light has beaten good level Australians Mark Flanagan and Trent Broadhurst and should now be looking to move up to better opposition to improve his No 8 rating from the WBO. The youngest of eight children Light was New Zealand amateur champion at heavyweight and won a silver medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. “Buster” Bryant, 40, extends his losing sequence to five fights.
Beauchamp vs. Hadlow
Surprise result on the surface as Beauchamp struggles against inexperienced Hadlow but Hadlow’s lack of pro fights hides a considerable amount of amateur success. Beauchamp had trouble with the naturally bigger Hadlow who boxed mainly as a light welterweight in the amateurs. The rounds were close but Hadlow just had the edge. Thai-born southpaw Beauchamp (Anut Srijan) was 12-1 in his last 13 fights including a victory over Joel Bruckner but was having only his second fight since July 2018. Hadlow, 32, was New Zealand champion in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.He won a gold medal at the Oceania Games and competed at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 so a lot of experience but at 32 it will be difficult for him to win big as a pro.
Parker vs. Tuala
There is another Parker in New Zealand but John is younger and smaller than brother Joseph. Tuala came in as a late substitute but never had a chance and the fight was halted in the second round. Parker was twice New Zealand Youth champion but at 5’9 ½” and having fought at just over the light heavy limit in the amateurs he is going to struggle against natural 200lbs fighters. He finished his days as an amateur in 2012 but a wrist injury kept him out of the ring until 2016. Even then his troubles were not over as a routine brain scan in 2018 showed a brain aneurysm which required surgery and he was out of the ring for over three years before returning to action last month. Tuala was having only his second fight in almost four years.
Hamburg, Germany: Heavy: Christian Thun (6-0) W TKO 3 Mirko Tintor (15-4-1). Heavy: Jose Larduet (4-0,1ND) W TKO 1 Ferenc Urban (7-2).
Thun vs. Tintor
The German Giant Thun, 28, wins the vacant IBO Continental title with stoppage of southpaw Tintor. At 6’8 ½” “The Hurricane” was just too big and strong for the obese Tintor who held and wrestled to survive. Thun scored a knockdown in each of the first two rounds before the fight was stopped with Tintor citing an injury to his left bicep. Thun spent ten days sparring with Anthony Joshua in preparation for this fight. He gets his fourth win by KO/TKO and his first pro title. Thun took up boxing whilst studying economics in London and took his first steps in boxing at the old Peacock gym. Bosnian Tintor was a late substitute. He suffers his fourth loss in his last five fights but the win in that sequence was over 16-1 Mohamed Soltby which gave him some respectability as an opponent for Thun
Larduet vs. Urban
Larduet brutalises poor Urban. The Cuban put Urban down three times with heavy head punches before the fight was stopped after just 76 seconds. The 30-year-old 6’4 ½” Larduet won a cupboard full of trophies as an amateur. If there is a concern it is over his weight control. He started out fighting at 178lbs as an amateur and was 266lbs when he turned pro. Hungarian cruiser champion Urban was too small and giving away too much weight.
London, England: Super Middle: Jack Cullen (18-2-1) W PTS 10 John Docherty (9-1). Bantam: Ukashir Farooq (14-1) W PTS 10 Angel Aviles (20-6-1). Light Heavy: Thomas Whittaker Hart (5-0) W PTS 8 Jermaine Springer (7-2).
Cullen vs. Docherty
Cullen climbs off the floor to outpoint previously unbeaten Docherty. The fight started very badly for Cullen as he found himself on the canvas within the first thirty seconds of the contest. Cullen beat the count and the rebounded to take the second. A clash of heads saw Docherty cut over the right eye in the third as Cullen made good use of his longer reach. From there the rounds were close and only a stronger finish from Cullen enabled him to walk away with a wafer-thin decision. Scores 96-94 twice and 95-94 for Cullen. Good win for Cullen. He is rebuilding after losing to Felix Cash for the British and Commonwealth titles in November. Setback for former top amateur Docherty but the young Scottish southpaw can also rebound.
Farooq vs. Aviles
Farooq much too talented for Mexican Aviles and wins a wide unanimous decision. This was to have been for the WBA Continental title but Aviles failed to make the weight so only Farooq could win the title which he did on scores of 100-90, 100-91 mad 99-91. First fight for the Pakistani-born Scot since losing by the smallest of margins again Lee McGregor for the Commonwealth and British titles in November. Aviles, a former IBO super fly challenger, had won his last eight fights.
Whittaker-Hart vs. Springer
Liverpool prospect Whittaker-Hart gets routine win as he moves up to eight rounds and builds his pro record. Referee’s score 79-74. The 25-year-old Whittaker-Hart was English and British champion in the amateurs and compete at both the European and World Championships. Springer played his part by making Whittaker-Hart work for his win.
Los Angeles, Ca, USA: Middle: Amilcar Vidal (12-0) W KO 2 Edward Ortiz (11-1-2). Heavy: Efetobor Apochi (10-0) W KO 2 Joe Jones (11-3).
Vidal vs. Ortiz
Vidal, one of the very few active professional boxers from Uruguay, halts Ortiz in two rounds. Vidal took his time working his way past the long reach of the 6’2” Ortiz but ended it in the second. Vidal connected with a powerful right over a lazy jab from Ortiz which sent Ortiz back to the ropes on unsteady legs. Vidal pounded on Ortiz and although Ortiz managed to work his way off the ropes he was driven there against and being bombarded with head punches until the referee stepped in-which he should have done much earlier. Eleventh inside the distance win for the 24-year-old Californian-based Vidal and his third victory over an unbeaten opponent. Texan Ortiz had collected victories over useful opposition in Kurtiss Colvin and Alexis Camacho but was blown away in this one.
Apochi vs. Jones
Apochi shows impressive punching power as he destroys Jones in three rounds. He floored Jones in the first with a burst of thumping head shots. Jones managed to beat the count but was down again in the second from a terrific right. Once again he arose and made it to the bell but another knockdown in the third saw the fight halted. The 33-year-old Houston-based Nigerian has won all of his bouts by KO/TKO. He studied microbiology at University in Nigeria whilst boxing as an amateur. He twice won a silver medal at the All-African Games and a bronze medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games where he scored a win over currently world rated Jai Opetaia. A bit late to call him a prospect but he can certainly punch. Second loss in a row for Jones.
Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania: Super Welter: Hass Mwakinyo (18-2) W TKO 4 Jose Carlos Paz (23-12-1).
Mwakinyo wins this WBFederation eliminator with stoppage of Paz. Mwakinyo’s strong jabbing put him in front from the first round. He handed out steady punishment over the first three rounds then ended the fight in the fourth. A body punch put Paz down and although he beat the count he was floored again. He made it to his feet but was against the ropes and taking heavy shots when the referee stopped the fight. Eighth win in a row for the 25-year-old Tanzanian who will now get a shot at the vacant WBFed world title. Paz has now lost his last five fights, all of them in different countries.
Windhoek, Namibia: Middle: Lukas Ndafoluma (18-3) W Christian Ukelo (7-8).
Ndafoluma returns with a win as he stops Ukelo in five rounds. Ukelo was competitive for a while and was giving Ndafoluma some trouble. He was attacking in the fifth but leaving himself open and Ndafoluma landed a big right that sent Ukelo flying back and down. He struggled to get to his feet but for some reason the referee stopped counting at eight and indicated for Ukelo to get up. When he did he just walked back to his corner making the decision the referee should have made. A needed win for “The Demolisher” Ndafoluma who was 2-2 in his last four fight with the losses in bouts in Kazakhstan and Russia. Seventh loss in a row for Ukelo.
Nadi, Fiji: Super Welter: Jese Ravudi (11-4-1) W TKO 9 Ronald Naidu (10-5-38
Ravudi vs. Naidu
In a clash of Fijian champions Ravudi gets revenge for loss against Naidu as he halts him in the ninth round to win the vacant WBFoundation title. Ravudi, the Fijian super welter champion, makes it 5 wins in his last 6 fights and victory No 5 by KO/TKO. Fijian welterweight champion Naidu had scored a unanimous decision over Ravudi in November.
Hwaseong, South Korea: Heavy: Sung Min Lee (7-1-1) DREW 10 Hyun Tae Bae (6-1-2). Light: Moo Hyun Kim (6-1) W KO 7 Dong Hyun Won (3-4).
Lee vs. Bae
Not much skill but plenty of honest endeavour here as Lee and Bae fought to a majority draw in a Korean title fight. Lee was taller but as the Korean cruiser champion he was giving away 25lbs in weight to heavyweight Lee. Really these two stood and knocked bits of each other over ten very competitive rounds. Scores 95-95 twice and 97-93 for Bae. Lee was making the first defence of the national title. He had won his last six fights. Base had won the cruiser title in February 2019 and this was his first fight since then. Neither of these fighters is going to progress above domestic level.
Kim vs. Won
Kim wins the vacant Korean title with seventh round stoppage of Won. Kim made a good start as he floored Won in the first and then broke him down gradually before knocking him over just three seconds before the end of the seventh round with the bell not able to save Won. First ten round fight and first title for Kim. At 36 Won is on the way out with his third loss in a row. Had to be careful how you write about Won. Who lost-Won-lost sounds like the cue for an Abbott and Costello classic sketch.
Fight of the week (Significance): Terrence Crawford’s win over Kell Brook might lead to a fight with Manny Pacquiao but if not then Shawn Porter is his mandatory challenger.
Fight of the week (Entertainment)Nothing stood out.
Fighter of the week: Terrence Crawford as he goes 15-0 in world title lights
Punch of the week: Mohamed Khalladi again showed his power as he flattened Arblin Kaba with one right hand.
Upset of the week: Khalladi was just a late substitute and was definitely not expected to beat Italian champion Kaba
Prospect watch: Lightweight Ray Muratalla (11-0) looked very good in his win over experienced Luis Porozo
The furious debate will rumble on for some time over the No Decision verdict in Franco vs. Moloney. The video replay is meant to settle incidents such as this but the condemnation of the decision and therefore of those responsible for operating the process was almost universal.
Good to see two more shows in Argentina as the return gathers pace there and good to see Marcos Maidana promoting and not talking about returning to the ring.
Los Angeles: CA US: Light William Zepeda (21-0) vs. Roberto Ramirez (23-2-1). Super Feather O’Shaquie Foster (17-2) vs. Miguel Roman (62-13). Super Feather: Eduardo Hernandez vs. Eduardo Garza (15-2-1).
Three competitive matches on paper.
Dayton Beach, FL, USA: Light Heavy: Tavoris Cloud (24-3) vs. Ryan Soft (4-11-1).
First fight in over six years for former IBF light heavy champion Cloud
Mimi, FL, USA: Bantam: Melvin Lopez (23-1) vs. Brandon Benitez (15-2).
Reasonable test for Nicaraguan hope Lopez. Cuban Jorge De Jesus (18-0-1) and former WBC fly champion Cristofer Rosales may also be on the card
Rimouski, Canada: Super Light: Yves Ulysse (18-2) vs. Mathieu Germain (18-11) and Super Light Steve Claggett (28-6-2) vs. David Theroux (16-3),
Two good domestic matches and heavyweight Simon Kean will also fight on the card
Magdeburg, Germany: Unbeaten cruiser Roman Fress faces reasonable test in Italian Francesco Versaci
Rome, Italy: Adriano Sperandio and Luca Spadaccini fight for the vacant Italian light heavy title
Tokyo, Japan: Rikki Naito (22-2) defends the OPBF super light title against Yusuke Konno (16-4).
London, England: Conor Benn (16-0) defends the WBA Continental welter title against Sebastian Formella. Unbeaten heavyweights Fabio Wardley and Alen Babic also on the card
Los Angeles, CA, US: WBC No 1 lightweight Javier Fortuna (35-2-1) faces Mexican Antonio Lozada (40-4-1).
Tampa, FL, USA: Welter Harold Calderon (22-0) vs. Gustavo Vittori (23-6-1). Light Heavy: Radivoje Kalajdzic (24-2) vs. Denis Grachev (20-10-1)
Another month is here and we get another chance to look at some commercials featuring boxers from Asia. This time around we have two adverts featuring Filipino fighters, 3 with Japanese fighters, two of our series regulars are on show again we really do look at some very different products!
Nonito Donaire - Summit Water
Whilst it appears we include a Manny Pacquaio commercial in every one of these he's not the only marketable Filipino from recent years and here's another top Filipino in advert, as we look at a commercial for Summit water featuring Nonito Donaire. The advert is a simple one, but features both the fighter, and water and sells the product. A pretty basic but one that actually makes sense! That's a real rarity in this series!
Guts Ishimatsu - Social Insurance Agency
A regular to this series is Guts Ishimatsu who, lets be honest, made a career out of these TV spots after his in ring career ended. Here is a very odd one for what we believe is a 1987 commercial for the Social Insurance Agency in Japan. British fans from the 1970's and 1980's might remember Mr Benn and it appears that Guts may have been looking to do a live action Mr Benn trying on clothing related to different jobs. It's a silly advert but as with many that Guts was in it's more memorable than it has any right to be.
Koki and Tomoki Kameda - "I want to Hug You"
A bit of an oddity here as two of the Kameda brothers, Koki and Tomoki, team up to help promote a musical single from Arashi Moritomo. The single, for whatever reason, had a 15 second commercial released in 2010 featuring the two brothers listening to the song. We're really not sure whether there was any need at all for the fighters to be featured here, but it does make it an oddity. We're really not sure if this helped the success of the song or not, but it did reach #13 in the Oricon charts.
Miyo Yoshida - Areti
In 2019 the then WBO female Super Flyweight champion Miyo Yoshida recorded several adverts for cosmetics company Areti, along with model GIMICO. One of them was dubbed the "Mama, Daughter, beautiful" advert. This advert focuses on Yoshida and Gimico using certain products to. It's perhaps not the most amazing advert, but it does seem like Yoshida is a natural on camera as is Yoshida's young daughter who makes a cameo in the final seconds. The advert shows off a range of products and is a simple but effective one.
Manny Pacquiao - Vitwater
We started this months commercials with an advert featuring a Filipino fighter promoting a brand of bottled of water, and we'll end it with one as well as we focus on Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao and his iconic Vitwater advert. Affectionately known as the "You know?" advert. The advert is a water advert, but is a silly one with the over-use of the phrase "You know" giving the whole thing a rather humour touch. For a bottled water advert this is actually a really good one and one that will stick in the mind a bit more than most....you know.
Last we looked at a very controversial bout featuring Koki Kameda, what few realise is that that wasn't actually the only time Koki himself was in a bout that saw the scorecards and judging being questioned. Whilst the win over Juan Jose Landaeta was a massive controversy, that saw an loud outcry from the Japanese fans, the media and former fighters he had several other questionable decisions go his way as well. Today we look at one of the most overlooked of his controversial wins, and one that did see a number of Japanese fans question the outcome.
Koki Kameda (27-1, 17) vs Nouldy Manakane (24-10-1, 15)
Years after winning the WBA Light Flyweight title in controversial fashion, in the aforementioned bout with Landaeta, Koki Kameda moved up through the weight. He took the WBC Flyweight title, with arguably his career best win against Daisuke Naito, and later moved up and claimed the WBA "regular" Bantamweight title. His reign there was truly unspectacular, full of under whelming performances and narrow wins. One of those, his 4th defense, saw him taking on Noldi Manakane from Indonesia.
With 35 bouts to his name Manakane was known regionally as a decent regional fighter but nothing particularly great. He had rebuilt well following a 1-4 start to his professional career and won the PABA, but wasn't really seen as being a world class fighter. If anything he was ranked more because of the PABA title than any specific win he'd score. His competition had been frightfully poor, inexperienced and limited and whilst we accept not all Indonesian and Thai's have complete records none of them seemed like the sort of preparation opponents needed for someone to move into world title level.
Despite the poor competition of Manakane, and his record, he was selected to be Kameda's challenger for an April 2012 bout. On paper a mismatch, even with Kameda looking a rather poor fighter at Bantamweight. He was given the green light by TBS, the television company behind Kameda, and the fight was on. The expectation was that Kameda would finally look good as a Bantamweight. Those expectations were very much wrong.
The opening round saw little in the way of action. Both men were patient, almost to a fault, there was little more than jabs from either man, in what made for a remarkably dull first round, with the main highlight being a looping right hand from Manakane almost 2 minutes into the round. Following that shot Kameda seemed to become even more negative. Whilst it could be put down to the typical "feeling out round" it was still dreary for a bout assumed to be a massive mismatch.
The pace began to pick up in round 2, but for the most part it was Manakane bringing the pressure, coming forward and throwing. To his credit the better work was from Kameda, it was clear Kameda was the more skilled boxer, the smarter man in the ring, and the one with that extra class. That however didn't make up for his laziness, and the short bursts of aggression from Manakane were certainly eye catching, if somewhat ineffective.
Round by round Manakane's confidence grew and he began to make a fight of things. He realised Kameda didn't have the power to hurt him and seemed happy to take extra risks, pushing the aggression more, and out landing Kameda in the exchanges. The fans who had expected the blow out win for Kameda were instead seeing the local man moving away and fighting like a man in sparring partner mode. This was obviously notable in some of the middle rounds, with round 5 being a very clear example of Kameda not being at the races.
Even when Kameda stood his ground and looked to fight with an increased output he didn't shine or show much consistency. He could only put his foot on the gas for bursts, something he did well in round 6 before going back off the boil soon afterwards.
That's not to say that Kameda looked bad when the tempo dropped. He still looked like a real talent, he showed some really nice touches, both defensively and offensively, but their wasn't much of them. For example landed a cracking left hand in round 11 and he had a fantastic round 12. Sadly though he made things hard for himself than they needed to be, he fought like a man scared of someone who was, essentially, a regional journeyman and struggled to get the juices going.
After the final bell Manakane celebrated. He like though that despite losing the final round he had built up a decent lead. That however didn't show on the official scorecards with scores of 117-110, 118-110 and 115-113. Scores that simply didn't make sense. The scores were met by mostly mild applause with a spattering of boos.
After the bout various international news sources reported that "Kameda dominated throughout the 12-round bout at Yokohama Arena in his fourth defence of the title he won in December 2010", but that was simply not true. Those in Japan felt the bout was close, some putting it down as a bit of a robbery in favour of Kameda, who had been getting a lucky run with the judges at this point in time. Plenty felt Kameda had deserved the win, though many felt it was by a point or two and that the scorecards were terrible, to say the least.
There was a rumour in some Japanese circles that the bout had been deleted from the internet at the time to stop people watching it and complaining about match fixing, genuinely that's an explanation we found on one Japanese site,
There is, of course, an argument of quality against quantity and the better shots did, for the most part, come from Kameda. There is no argument there. Some of the punches he landed were genuinely fantastic. The issue is that there wasn't enough of them. They were few and far between, and he was out worked by so much in some rounds that his quality shot or two was easy to forget. Round after round Kameda looked happy to try and old man the old man he was facing and it meant what was supposed to be a mismatch turned into a real struggle. The wrong tactics were applied round after round from Kameda, who looked incredibly lazy through out. The finish was good from Kameda, but it was impossible to give him a 117-110 or 118-110 card from the action in the ring. Those wide cards made it seem like Manakane, a very limited fighter, was being stitched up.
Interestingly Manakane has since fought in a number of Japanese bouts. In 2012 he lost to Eita Kikuchi and a debuting Kenji Kubo, was stopped in 2013 by Koki's younger brother Daiki Kameda, and lost to Juki Tatsuyoshi and Ryo Suwa in 2018. In none of those returns to the country did he look the same as he did here. As for Kameda he managed 4 more defenses, but 3 of those were hotly contested split decisions and he eventually gave up the title rather than face Anselmo Moreno. He dropped down to Super Flyweight and then lost to Kohei Kono in what was his final professional bout.
Despite the controversies Kameda has remained a notable figure in Japanese sports culture. He had a special event on an online streaming service, where he fought 5 people in the same event, and also fought Pongsaklek Wonjongkam in an exhibition style bout. He has however left the ring with many criticising his career, his opponents and bouts like this.
Whilst we don't see this as a robbery our selves, we do see the scorecards being rather awful. Interestingly Michael Lee, who had the bout 118-110, ended up doing Kameda's next two bouts, favouring him in both which ended in split decision wins for him. As for Ferlin Marsh, who put in the 117-110, he never got a call back to do a Kameda fight, but does appear to have been very consistent since his score here.
By Eric Armit
Many writers of British history find it irresistible to write about the PTS period. No that’s not Post Traumatic Stress it is Plantagenet, Tudors and Stewarts as there was always something happening during the reigns of the respective regents of those three eras. It is very much like the heavyweight division today. The head that wore the crown then was always likely to have his reign come to an end in a dramatic fashion. Over those three periods we cut the head of a king, supposedly disposed of others by drowning one in a vat of wine and another by inserting a red hot poker up where I dare not mention and killed one in battle. No king retired peacefully or willingly but a couple were stripped of their titles and sent to some awful foreign place such as France or Italy. It should also be noted in a reflection on the emergence in the present day of female boxing that we also chopped the heads of three queens!
We do things in a much more civilised manner these days. King Anthony Joshua travelled to one of our former colonies and was ambushed and deposed by that foreign villain Andy Ruiz. Joshua was not executed for this failure but did not escape being pilloried. He regained the crown by defeating the usurper Ruiz. However as has happened throughout the PTS period there have always been other claimants to the throne. For many years it was Deontay Wilder a citizen of Alabama an area to the West of our thirteen colonies. However Tyson Fury, a giant from our North West, established a strong claim for kingship by vanquishing Wilder. Fury himself had been the strongest claimant until he was unable to enter the field of battle to defend his crown. Eventually with the aid of the powerful Warren Clan and Bob Arum, a citizen of one of our thirteen colonies, he has now gained considerable recognition as king in his own right.
Just as in the PST period we have young pretenders waiting to claim the throne such as Daniel Dubois and we face invasion from foreign forces such as Oleksandr Usyk from Ukraine and Kubrat Pulev from Bulgaria so no real change there. No drugs problems in those days. In fact we did not even have tobacco until 1586-hell of a long time to wait for a smoke! Things are much different today with there having been failed tests or contested results surrounding Fury, Dillian Whyte and Hughie Fury although all have been cleared on this. In a reminder of the PST period Fury’s positive test came from eating boar’s meat. Perhaps that’s what made the English such formidable fighters. I can hear Sir Francis Drake saying I don’t care if the Spanish Armada is sailing up the channel I am not going anywhere until I finish me game of bowls and my boar’s meat sandwich.
One feature of the PST period we might think of reintroducing is the scale of punishments existing then. Today for a drugs offence it seems the maximum punishment is two years suspension and too often it in nothing more than a slap on the wrist. We should reintroduce that old favourite hanging drawing and quartering. Those of a delicate nature should skip this bit as I am about to describe the process. The miscreant was hung by the neck then taken down whilst still alive had his guts cut open and his innards drawn out and then placed in his hands often whilst still alive then be cut into four pieces with each piece being displayed on a spike at the entrances to the city. Now that’s what I call a deterrent!
Additionally no one ever confesses these days when caught on a positive test so how about a session on the rack to enhance their memories
Just as today where we have COVID-19 back in the Plantagenet era we had the plague. Ignorance allowed the plague to have a far more tragic result. Today promoters deserve a vote of thanks for the way they are working with the health officials to keep boxing alive. Top Rank blazed the trail but in Britain both Queensbury and Matchroom picked up that torch.
One of the infamous historic incidents in the PST period is the still unanswered question of what happened to the two princes Edward V (before he could be crowned) and the Duke of York who were locked in the Tower of London and mysteriously disappeared. Modern equivalent of mysterious disappearance? When was the last time you saw WBA heavyweight champions Manuel Charr and Trevor Bryan in a ring?
Of course Wilder has caused a stir with his ridiculous claim that Fury loaded his gloves for their second fight. Firstly it has taken Wilder more than ten months to realise Fury’s gloves were loaded and secondly he is accusing the Nevada Commission of incompetence. It makes him look pathetic and a poor loser.
To finish with the heavyweights Alexander Povetkin is free of COVID-19 but too late to save his return fight with Dillian Whyte with even the 30 January looking in question. Whyte has accused Povetkin of faking the COVID-19 case saying Povetkin is only using it as an excuse to get more time to prepare. You have to hand it to the heavyweights they really know how to make themselves look silly. Luis Ortiz has challenged Andy Ruiz, Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce face each other on 1 November with new heavyweight prospect David Adeleye vs. Danny Whittaker and WBO No 1 super light Jack Catterall tackling Tunisian Abderrazak, Tony Yoka takes on Christian Hammer in Nantes on 27 November, there’s talk of a Filip Hrgovic and Mike Hunter fight which would be the first real test for Hrgovic and of interest since Hunter drew with Povetkin in December-a result for which he did not get the credit he deserves and may be the reason why Povetkin was not seen as too big a risk for Dillian Whyte.
Then there are the two big nights with the kings putting their crowns on the line with Tyson Fury defending the WBC tiara on 5 December with former undefeated European champion Agit Kabayel the likely opponent and 12 December with Anthony Joshua putting the IBF, WBA, WBC and IBO titles on the line against Kubrat Pulev. The executioner is sharpening his axe but let’s hope it is not a king’s head which ends up on the block next month.
The WBA’s disappearing trick does not just apply to heavyweights. Their secondary champion at cruiserweight Beibut Shumenov won the title in July 2018 and has yet to defend it. That is disgraceful when there is an interim champion in Ryad Merhy who would fight him tomorrow. It is ridiculous that the WBA keep inventing new titles to garner sanctioning fees but are willing to let Shumenov freeze their title for two years
The situation with Saul Alvarez seems to change from day to day with him having recently been declared a free agent you would think there would be a queue at his door and lots of rumours flying about. The latest twist is talk of going back to DAZN to fight Callum Smith in Texas next month in front of a live audience as spectators are allowed in Texas. That would reduce the number of title holders the WBA have super middle with Smith the real champion and Alvarez the holder of the secondary title. You can’t be sure this is the final outcome with other names still being thrown around but Alvarez vs. Smith would be a tough ask for both fighters and better than some of the other matches being talked about.
Luke Campbell is reported to be coming along well in his recovery from COVID-19 and his WBC lightweight final eliminator against Ryan Garcia is now rescheduled for 19 December with a shot at Devin Haney the prize for the winner.
Good to see that a settlement has been made in the court case between Carl Frampton and Barry McGuigan. Boxing needs Frampton in the ring in big fights and boxing needs McGuigan finding and developing new talent on his promotions.
It was surprising to see that Felix Sturm is to return to the ring in Hamburg on 19 December under the Universum banner. The former world middleweight and super middleweight champion will be 42 in January and this will be his first fight since February 2016. In early 2019 Sturm was arrested and spent eight months in custody. In April he was convicted of tax evasion, violation of anti-doping laws and assault and the case is going through the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe.
Former undefeated WBO super middle champion Gilberto Ramirez is ready to return to the ring. He will fight Alfonso Lopez on 19 December with somewhere in Texas the likely venue. Ramirez is No 1 with the WBC and No 4 with the WBA. It will be Ramirez’s first fight since April 2019 and he will be looking to challenger Artur Beterbiev for both the WBA and WBC titles early next year.
Two of South Africa’s stars could clash in the New Year. Both former WBO bantamweight champion Zolani Tete and IBO super fly champion Gideon Buthelezi have indicated interest in the fight if the money is right. Tete has not fought since being crushed by John Riel Casimero in November and Gideon since defending his IBO title in July last year.
When we have some free time we're hoping to add a series of fun articles to the site. Hopefully these will be enjoyable little short features