September 16, 2015
September 16, 2015
Gary Cornish

Lawrence Lustig

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Weekly Results 16 September 2015

September 9

Polomolok, Philippines: Minimum: Vic Saludar (11-1) W TKO 1 Rizky Pratama (6-4). Fly: Froilan Saludar (23-1-1) W TKO 6 Mike Escobia (10-11-1).

Saludar vs. Pratama

“Vicious” Saludar gets a quick win. The local banger floored the inexperienced Indonesian early. When Pratama got up he indicated that he had suffered a shoulder injury and the fight was stopped. The 24-year-old Saludar wins the vacant WBO Asia Pacific title and has 9 wins by KO/TKO. His loss came in 2013 when he suffered a fractured hand and could not continue. He has won nine in a row since then and is No 1 with the GAB.

Saludar vs. Escobia

Saludar makes it a family double as he gets win over former victim Escobia. A cut ended this one. It was opened by a punch and in the sixth round it was affecting the vision of Escobia and he wisely decided to retire. The 26-year-old “Sniper” lost to McWilliams Arroyo in two rounds in June last year but has bounced back with 4 wins and is now at No 2 with the WBO. No 1 Brian Viloria is going to fight Roman Gonzalez for the WBC title which should put Saludar in line for a shot at Juan Francisco Estrada. Eight losses in a row for Escobia including a points defeat against Saludar in February.

 

September 10

 

Westbury, NY, USA: Cruiser: Steve Geffrard (13-2) W TKO 5 Cory Cummings (18-10-1). Welter: Tommy Rainone (24-6-1) W PTS 6 Francisco Javier Reza (15-15).

Geffrard vs. Cummings

Geffrard continues his winning run with stoppage of experienced Cummings. The former top amateur came close to ending it in the third but let Cummings off the hook. He kept up the pressure in a one-sided match and when he shook Cummings again in the fifth the referee stopped the fight. After losing his first two fights Geffrard has run up 13 wins in a row 8 by KO/TKO. The 25-year-old from Boca Raton was US Boxing Athlete of the Year in 2010 after winning the US National Championships, the NGG’s and the PAL tournaments in the same year. However he failed at the Trials for the 2012 Olympics. Trained by Ronnie Shields the 6’2” (188cm) business school graduate is worth keeping an eye on. “Black Ice” Cummings, 35 was giving away a lot of height as he falls to 1-6-1 in his last 8 fights.

Rainone vs. Reza

Rainone survives a cut to win every round against Reza. Ironically it was “The Razor” Rainone who came out of a clash of heads in the second round with a cut. Luckily it was under his right eye so not affecting his vision. Rainone proceeded to hand out a steady beating to Reza who only just managed to see out the full distance. Scores 60-54 from all three judges. The 35-year-old Rainone is 7-1-1 in his last 9 fights with the loss being to unbeaten Dusty Hernandez Harrison. Mexican Reza is 3-10 in his last 13 fights.

 

September 11

 

 

Toronto, Canada: Light Heavy: Adonis Stevenson (27-1) W TKO 3 Tommy Karpency (25-5-1). Welter: Errol Spence (18-0) W TKO 8 Chris van Heerden (23-2-1). Heavy: Dillon Carman (9-2) W KO 3 Donovan Ruddock (40-6-1). Super Welter: Prichard Colon (16-0) W TKO 4 Vivian Harris (32-11-2,1ND). Welter: Ionut Dan Ion (35-3) W PTS 8 Jake Giuriceo (17-5-1).

Stevenson vs. Karpency

Predictably easy defence for Stevenson as he retains the WBC title with early stoppage in all-southpaw contest. Karpency did not come to lie down and landed a few good punches of his own but the power of Stevenson was just too much. Both started cautiously probing with their jab and with plenty of feinting trying to get the other guy to make a mistake. Karpency landed a couple of rights but Stevenson banged back with one of his own then they went back to prodding and probing with the jab. More jabbing at the start of the second but Karpency landed a solid overhand left. They traded briefly half way through the round and Karpency tried a wild left which missed. Karpency was leaping in but his punches were wild. Stevenson caught Karpency with a hard left but Karpency seemed to absorb it only for Stevenson to the nail him with another left inside. That unhinged Karpency’s legs and he stumbled back to the ropes. Stevenson landed a thudding right which catapulted Karpency off the ropes and sent the challenger down on his hands and knees on the canvas with just four seconds left in the round. Karpency tried to rise but tumbled over. At the second attempt he made it to his feet just at the count of nine (there was no 8 count in use). The round had completed its three minutes whilst he was on the floor but the fighter could not be saved by the bell. As soon as he got up the referee sent both fighters to their corners. Stevenson came out fast in the third looking to finish the job. He drove Karpency to the ropes and landed three clubbing lefts which sent Karpency falling to his side and down face first on the canvas. He managed to get up at eight and took a couple of steps forward when asked to do so but the referee took a hard look at him and waived the fight over. Sixth defence for 37-year-old Haitian-born Stevenson and win No 22 by KO/TKO. Now he says he wants Sergey Kovalev – we all want that one. 29-year-old “Kryptonite” Karpency lost every round against Nathan Cleverly in a challenge for the WBO title in 2012 and had been stopped by Andrzej Fonfara for the vacant IBO title. Despite those losses he earned his chance with a split decision over Chad Dawson and was WBC No 9.

Spence vs. van Heerden

Spence again shows he is a real threat in this division as he brushes aside van Heerden. The hand speed of Spence was a big factor in another all-southpaw scrap. He was using a stiff right jab to open up the South African and then banging home punches to head and body. He was out-throwing and out-landing van Heerden although the South African did enough scoring of his own to stay in the fight and be competitive up to a point. van Heerden’s left eye was being affected by a swelling from the second round and combinations from Spence rocked the South African in the third. In the fourth a right from Spence saw van Heerden’s mouthguard fly out but the referee decided it was deliberate and deducted a point. Despite his left eye now being virtually closed van Heerden stood and traded with Spence in the fight but got much the worse of the exchanges. The sixth was one-sided as Spence scored with both hands to head and body and it was becoming a case of how much longer van Heerden could keep soaking up the punishment. A right to the side of the head put van Heerden down in the seventh and after the South African got up a body punch put him down for the second time. He made a brave attempt to get back in the fight in the eighth but Spence cut that short by hammering home a volley of punches that brought the referee’s intervention. The 25-year-old Texan has now won 8 of his last 9 fights by KO/TKO. The former 2009/2010/2011 US National champion and 2012 Olympian shows he is ready to move up. He is No 8 with the WBA and ready for any other rated fighter. van Heerden, 28, a former IBO welter champion had not lost since 2010 and was on a nine bout winning streak but Spence was better in every department.

Carman vs. Ruddock

Hopefully Carman has put an end to Ruddock’s return to the ring. The Canadian champion took the first round and then stepped-up his attacks in the second. He ended things emphatically in the third. A couple of rights saw Ruddock slump down on one knee. Although he got up another right saw Ruddock stretched out on his back on the canvas for the full count. Ruddock may be 51 but for Carman this was a win over someone with a “name” and will have raised his profile. The 6’5” (196cm) 29-year-old “Big Country” was making the first defence of his Canadian title. All of his last 8 fights have ended by KO/TKO -unfortunately one of those was a loss to Sylvera Louis but he beat Louis inside a round in their return bout. Ruddock had not impressed in his two other comeback fights and hopefully he will retire again.

Colon vs. Harris

Puerto Rican hope Colon too young and quick for Harris and scores crushing kayo in fourth. The flashy Colon’s movement and hand speed were just too much for Harris. From the start he was shooting out his jab and looking for openings for his long rights. Harris was giving away reach and either had to get inside or draw Colon onto counters. He chose the latter but was too slow and was not letting his hands go. In the second Colon was coming forward looking to find a home for his rights. He took Harris to the ropes and landed three hard rights to the head but Harris escaped and stayed out of trouble for the rest of the round, In the fourth Colon was mixing in left hooks but that right cross was still the punch he was looking to land. He got through with a couple near the end of the round but Harris jabbed his way to safety. Colon finished it in style in the fourth. After all of his head hunting it was a long right to the body that stiffened Harris and then Colon unleashed a series of head punches that put Harris down on the canvas face first and he was counted out. The 22-year-old “Digget” a protégé of Felix Trinidad and a former top amateur, has 13 wins by KO/TKO. With his height, reach and power he is a real danger in this division. Guyanan Harris, 37, was never in the fight. He is 3-8-1 in his last 12 fights but two of those 3 wins were over Danny O’Connor and Jorge Paez Jr.

Ion vs. Giuriceo

Ion gets through his first fight since being crushed by Kell Brook. The Romanian southpaw took a little while to shake a bit of rust but was generally in command and took the wide unanimous decision on scores of 79-73 from all three judges. Ion, 34, dismissed any suggestion he had considered retiring after being down four times and retiring after four rounds in his challenge to IBF champion Brook. He has at least taken the first step on the road back. Giuriceo came in as a very late sub and has lost 5 of his last 6 fights but gave Ion eight rounds of work.

 

Las Vegas, NV, USA: Feather: Oscar Valdez (17-0) W TKO 5 Chris Avalos (26-4). Super Middle: Jesse Hart (18-0) W TKO 9 Aaron Pryor Jr (19-9-1). Light Heavy: Egor Mekhontsev (10-0) W PTS 8 Jackson Junior (18-4,1ND). Super Light: Mike Reed (16-0) W TKO 5 Antonio Canas (10-1-1,1ND). Super Feather: Erick De Leon (11-0) W PTS 6 Angel Hernandez (9-5-1,1ND).

Valdez vs. Avalos

Valdez marches on. The outstanding young Mexican talent dismantled former IBF super bantam challenger Avalos inside five rounds. From the first Valdez just could not miss Avalos with a variety of jabs, hooks and uppercuts. Avalos was as ever willing to stand and trade but could do nothing to get himself in with a chance. Left hooks, straight rights all got through. The first knockdown came late in the third round as Valdez put the finishing touch to a one-sided round by nailing Avalos with a left hook which turned his legs to jelly with Avalos taking a step forward, a step back and then tumbling to the canvas. Avalos is a tough guy and he got up but he was lucky that the bell went before Valdez could do any more damage. Avalos tried to fight back in the fourth but was again shaken badly near the end of the round. Valdez wrapped matters up in the fifth as he slammed home a left jab that snapped back the head of Avalos and when he staggered him again with a shot to the head the referee stopped the fight. The 24-year-old Valdez has 15 wins by KO/TKO and is already rated No 2 by the WBO which is overgenerous on the basis of his opposition but he should be ready for a title shot by late 2016. He was one of Mexico’s most successful amateurs winning a World Youth gold medal, a silver at the Pan American Games and a bronze at the World Championships. A world title as a pro should ease some of the hurt from unsuccessful shots at both the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. Avalos, 25, suffers his second loss by KO/TKO with the other being against Carl Frampton in a challenge for the IBF super bantam title in February. He had won last time out beating reasonable opposition in Filipino Rey Perez.

Hart vs. Pryor

Hart gets another inside the distance win as he halts Aaron Pryor Jr in nine rounds. Hart started well and finished well but the bit in between was not so hot. Hart was always looking for the big punch but Pryor was looking to survive and their styles did not mix at all. Hart just could not nail Pryor down or get him to stand and trade so it was a fight that lacked highlights and became messy. Hart was winning every round because he was the only one doing any fighting but he just could not find a way to cut Pryor off and force him to fight. When he got inside he lacked ideas and Pryor was smothering his work. Hart finally found the punch he had been seeking in the ninth. Having missed round after round with rights Hart landed a looping one which shook Pryor and forced him back to the ropes. Hart then cut loose driving Pryor along the ropes landing a succession of thudding head punches with Pryor not trying to fight back until the referee stopped the fight. Hart, 26, retains the IBF USBA and WBO NABO titles. He has 15 wins by KO/TKO. The son of one Philly’s great pros “Cyclone” Hart he is a former NGG champion. He came so close to getting on the 2012 Olympic Team. He won 5 fights at the trials over 5 fighters who are all now unbeaten pros but lost to yet another one Terrell Gausha 3-2 in the final box-off. Hart is making his dad proud but I am not sure about how the great Aaron Pryor views his son’s efforts. Now 37, Pryor Jr is 4-7-1 in his last 12 fights and is going nowhere.

Mekhontsev vs. Junior

Russian Mekhontsev gets a wake-up call as he hits the floor for the first time as a pro but gets up to win. After flooring Junior in the first Mekhontsev was comfortably in control and cruising to victory but after Junior put him down in the sixth the Russian had a fight on his hands but he ran out a clear winner. Scores 77-74 twice and 77-73. The 30-year-old Mekhontsev may have left it a bit late to turn pro but after winning gold medals at the European Championships (twice) the World Championships and the 2012 Olympics there was nothing left for him to aim for. Junior, 29, was unbeaten in his first 16 fights but is 3-4 in his last 7 after losses to Mekhontsev, Vasily Lepikhin, Rakhim Chakhkiev and Isidro Ranoni Prieto.

Reed vs. Canas

Southpaw Reed adds another inside the distance win. The Maryland prospect had Canas shaky in the first round but he survived and began to take the fight to Reed looking to work inside. Reed was content boxing on the outside and controlling the action. In the fifth a vicious right to the body put Canas down. He got up but Reed unleashed a barrage of punches and the referee stopped the fight. The 22-year-old from Waldorf, a former NGG champion, has 9 wins by KO/TKO. Canas grandly nicknamed “The Aztec God of War” had gone 4-0-1ND in his previous 5 fights.

De Leon vs. Hernandez

Yet another Top Rank with great amateur credentials adds to his winning total. De Leon won every round and walked away with the unanimous decision on scores of 60-54 from all three judges. The Mexican-born Detroit-raised 23-year-old southpaw is a former three-time NGG champion in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Texan Hernandez is 1-4-1 in his last 6 but the guys he lost to have had combined records of 50-0 going in.

 

Bahia Blanca, Argentina: Super Middle: Ruben E Acosta (31-12-5) W TKO 2 Pablo Nievas Zamora (30-13-1). Acosta brushes Nievas aside to retain South American title. He had more trouble making the weight than he did with Nievas and the referee stepped into save Nievas half way through the second round. The 37-year-old local fighter was making the fifth defence of his title and gets his eleventh win by KO/TKO. He is 4-4 in his last 8 fights but the four losses have been in tough company against Callum Smith, Max Vlasov, Isidro R Prieto and Patrick Nielsen. He is No 1 with the FAB. Zamora, 34, the FAB No 9 lost to Anthony Mundine on points for the WBA secondary title back in 2007.

 

Rio Cuarto, Argentina: Feather: Claudio F Echegaray (14-0-1) W TKO 4 Mario Villalobos (8-9-1). Echegaray retains the WBA Fedebol title with stoppage of Villalobos. It was an easy night for Echegaray as Villalobos was a last minute substitute after Oscar Nievas pulled out. Echegaray pressured from the start working inside and attacking the body. Villalobos was never in the fight and taking a beating when the referee stopped the fight in the fourth. Second defence for 25-year-old southpaw Echegaray and eighth win by KO/TKO. He is FAB No 3. “Little Duck” Villalobos is 1-6-1 in his last 8 fights and this is loss No 5 by KO/TKO.

 

Hangshou, China: Super Bantam: Qiu Xiao Jun (18-2) W KO 6 Diarh Gabutan (19-5-2). Super Feather: Kaewfah Tor Buamas (20-0) W PTS 10 Andrew Wallace (10-6-1).

Jun vs. Gabutan

Highly-touted Jun wins but fails to impress in a slow fight. Jun was making the first defence of his WBC Silver title and was up against very modest opposition in Filipino southpaw Gabutan. Jun did what landing there was in a featureless first round and although he tried to put pressure on in the second Gabutan was never in any trouble. In the third Gabutan landed a right just as Jun’s foot slipped and although he touched the canvas it was not seen as a knockdown but did seem to shake Jun a little. Jun managed to get home with a hard right in the fourth but Gabutan again was not in any trouble from it and boxed his way to the bell. The fifth was the worst round so far with Gabutan doing very little and Jun doing even less. It looked as though the fight had flat-lined as far as action was concerned but in the sixth Jun landed a left hook that put Gabutan down and out. The 25-year-old Chinese fighter lost twice early in his career to Filipino Jonathan Baat but beat Baat in their third match. He has now won his last 10 fights and the WBC somehow have him as No 1 at super bantam which is just ridiculous based on his opposition – but China is a big market. Gabutan loses by KO/TKO for the third time and has lost 4 of his last 5 fights and is not in the top 20 Filipino’s in this division.

Buamas vs. Wallace

Thai Buamas wins the vacant WBC ABC title with unanimous decision over English-born Wallace. Buamas was a clear winner but Wallace put up a good effort despite losing. Scores 97-93, 98-95 and 96-94. These title fights are usually 12 rounds so that is a query. Buamas, 29, has impressive figures but 12 of his victims had never had a fight, two had combined record of 0-13-1-well you get the picture. Wolverhampton-born Wallace, 37, based in Australia, has now lost 6 of his last 7 fights.

 

Corby, England: Cruiser: Simon Barclay (7-0) W TKO 7 Micky Steeds (13-7-1).

Local prospect Barclay moves up to ten rounds class but only needs seven of them for a win. Barclay got off to a great start flooring Steeds with a combination in the first round. He also shook Steeds with another combination in the second. Steeds fought back hard taking the fight to Barclay but despite two small cuts over each eye Barclay was well in command and worked Steeds over in the sixth. By that stage the referee had Barclay ahead 59-54 but instead of coasting to victory he banged home a succession of hard punches in the seventh and at the end of the round Steeds retired. The tall 26-year-old Barclay gets his first win by KO/TKO and the double ABA champion is making good progress. Steeds, 31, a former British title challenger at both cruiser and light heavyweight had only been stopped once before and that was by Yoan Pablo Hernandez.

 

Huntington, NY, USA: Light Heavy: Joe Smith Jr (19-1) W TKO 9 Dion Savage (12-8).

Smith halts Savage in tough exciting scrap. Smith had the power but Savage refused to fold and was more than willing to get into trading punches. Smith nearly ended it in the third as a volley of punches sent Savage tumbling through the ropes. Savage made it back through the ropes and into the ring but when the action resumed he was staggered again by a right and saved from further punishment by the bell. Smith was taking the fight to Savage looking to exploit his success but Savage banged back with punches of his own to stay competitive. Smith had been grinding Savage down and in the ninth he came out throwing punch after punch until Savage was forced to go down or out. Savage made it to his feet and went straight into trading punches only to be bombarded with a series of hard punches that saw the referee stop the fight. After an early career loss the 25-year-old from Long Island has won 13 on the bounce and has won his last five fights by KO/TKO. Savage, or Shujja El Amin as he is now known, has lost his last 5 fights against tough opposition.

 

Edmonton, Canada: Light: Cam O’Connell (8-0-1) W PTS 8 Randy Lozano (10-7-2).

Local hope O’Connell has to get off the floor to stay unbeaten. The boxer from Red Deer found himself on the canvas in the first, compliments of an over hand right from Mexican Lozano. O’Connell got up and then took the fight to Lozano. He found Lozano a tough and awkward opponent who kept ducking inside the Canadian’s punches which resulted in a few punches to the back of the head from O’Connell. He was warned and did not try it again and outboxed Lozano to take the unanimous decision. Scores 77-74 twice and 76-75. Second eight round bout for O’Connell who had just one fight between December 2013 and June this year. O’Connell was Canadian amateur champion in 2010. Lozano, 22, was 2-3 in his last five fights but was coming off a stoppage win over former IBF/WBA/WBO title challenger Cecilio Santos.

 

September 12

 

Las Vegas, NV, USA: Welter: Floyd Mayweather Jr (49-0) W PTS 12 Andre Berto (30-4). Super Middle: Badou Jack (20-1-1) W PTS 12 George Groves (21-3). Super Feather: Roman Martinez (29-2-3) DREW 12 Orlando Salido (42-13-3,1ND). Super Welter: Vanes Martirosyan (36-2-1) W PTS 10 Ishe Smith (27-8). Super Feather: Jonathan Oquendo (26-4) W PTS 10 Jhonny Gonzalez (58-10). Middle: Chris Pearson (13-0,1ND) W TKO 7 Janks Trotter (9-2-1,1ND). Super Light: Ronald Gavril (14-1) W TKO 8 Scott Sigmon (25-8-1). Super Light: Ashley Theophane (39-6-1) W PTS 10 Steve Upsher Chambers (25-5-1,1ND). Super Feather: Gervonta Davis (12-0) W TKO 1 Recky Dulay (8-2,1ND).

Mayweather vs. Berto

Mayweather bows out with victory No 49 as he easily outscores Berto to no one’s surprise and retains the WBC and WBA titles. Mayweather showed his trade mark hand speed in the first working well to head and body and landing a couple of choice left hooks. Berto announced his presence in the fight with a choice right in the second but he was just not quick enough. Mayweather took the fight to Berto in the third and both scored with good punches. There was a moment of shock in the round as Mayweather went down but it was rightly ruled a slip and he was up quickly and back in charge. Berto’s only chance in the fight was if he could cut the ring down and force Mayweather to the ropes and he did that briefly in the fourth but he was also leaving gaps for Mayweather to exploit and paid for that as Mayweather banged home a hard right counter. Berto was warned for a low blow in the fifth and despite his constant pressure Mayweather was beating him to the punch and easily evading many of Berto’s punches as he eased his way through the sixth. Mayweather chose to stand and trade shots in the seventh but again the hand speed and clever defensive work meant that Mayweather was showing that Berto’s only chance of winning was no chance at all. Not all of the exchanges involved punches as they were also exchanging words. Mayweather took the eighth and drilled home punch after punch in the ninth as it was getting to be more like an exhibition than a contest. At the end of the ninth Mayweather seemed to indicate to his corner he was suffering some pain in his left hand and he chose to coast through the tenth with the only moment of note when the referee called the fighters together and told them to cut out the talking and get on with the fighting. In the eleventh Mayweather was in cruise control playing to the balcony and showcasing his skills with Berto not able to do anything about it. Mayweather briefly traded with Berto in the last landing some crisp shots just to show he could when he wanted to and then backpedalled over the closing stages of the round until the bell signalled the end of his career. Scores 120-108, 118-110 and 117-111 with the last seeming generous to Berto. Now 38, Mayweather was adamant that this was his last fight. He has equalled Rocky Marciano’s record of 49-0 and won 26 world title fights and achieved everything he wanted to achieve and was finished with fighting. He may be serious and really believe he can and will just walk away from ring competition but we have seen so many great boxers say the same and find the urge to return just too strong. Many will believe him but even more will expect to see him fight again in 2016. Berto, 32, is a good fighter and it must have been irritating to hear himself so heavily criticised as an opponent before the fight. A spell of three losses, to Victor Ortiz, Robert Guerrero and Jesus Soto Karass, in four fights were a clear indication that he stood no chance against Mayweather but it was no fault of his that Mayweather picked him and there was no way he was going to walk away from a $4 million payday so in taking the fight he was blameless but to show how unhappy people were with Mayweather taking a fight he knew he would win for his farewell Berto was on the receiving end of a lot of negativity about his ability. He is a former WBC and IBF welter champion it was just that boxing fans unrealistically expected Mayweather to bow out on a high risk fight-no way.

Jack vs. Groves

Jack floors Groves in the first on his way to a split decision to retain his WBC title. Despite being champion Jack was a slight outsider in the betting but he proved in the first round that he saw things differently as he floored Groves with two rights late in the round. Groves was badly shaken but made it to his feet and the bell went soon after. Groves recovered quickly from that early shock and showed he had the better skills as he landed well with the jab and found a home for some quick combinations. Jack had shown he was the bigger puncher but Groves was willing to trade over the next three rounds and looked to have made up for the 10-8 first round and edged ahead. Certainly Groves was using a higher work rate to take control but he was not as accurate as usual and a lot of his energy was wasted. Groves also had a good sixth round but then he seemed to tire and Jack’s harder punching and more accurate work began to swing the fight his way. The eighth was close but Jack took the ninth with a couple of damaging rights and Groves was letting the fight slip away. Jack was on the front foot more now and again getting through with those strong right hand punches with Groves visibly wilting. Groves found the energy for a resurgence in the eleventh cracking home a good right but by the end of the round Jack was the one doing most of the scoring. They both fought hard in the last although Groves seemed to be avoiding getting too involved and may have felt that his work over the early rounds had been enough to outweigh the knockdown, Jack’s more accurate work and the champion’s strong finish. The judges did not all agree on that. Scores 116-111 and 115-112 for Jack and 114-113 for Groves. Jack was making the first defence of the WBC title he had won with an upset majority points victory over Anthony Dirrell in April. Swedish-born with a Gambian father the 31-year-old “Ripper” has now met his mandatory obligations and is hoping for some fights against the big names in the division. He would start as an outsider against Andre Ward but he has Julio Cesar Chavez Jnr and Lucien Bute in the WBC ratings which would be good pay days or he could take the chance of clashing with some of the young lions such as Callum Smith and Gilberto Ramirez. Groves, 27, was having his third shot at a title having been beaten twice inside the distance in fights with Carl Froch for the IBF and WBA titles with their second fight being one of the biggest attractions in British boxing history. Now he has to rebuild for a fourth shot and he is young enough to do just that.

Martinez vs. Salido

Martinez retains the WBO title with questionable draw against Salido. Their fight in April which saw Martinez get a deserved decision was a classic contender for fight of the year and over the first three rounds this one looked like matching it. Both fighters were looking to land heavy punches from the opening bell and after that entertaining start Salido started to force the pace of the fight. He knew Martinez was the better technician so had to get the Puerto Rican into the trenches and he pressed hard in the second round. In the third Salido was credited with a knockdown which wasn’t, it was Salido stepping on Martinez’s foot that sent the Puerto Rican down. Martinez literally put that right later in the round as he landed a right that put Salido down on his knees. Martinez had a good fourth shaking Salido early but the fifth was Salido’s round and he looked to have had the better of the exchanges in the sixth. The seventh was even better for Salido as this time he rocked Martinez. The challenger was out-throwing and out-landing Martinez and getting home some energy sapping body punches. Martinez was more accurate with his punches but just not able to establish any dominance. In round after round they were waging a battle of attrition but it was Salido who was coming out on top in most of the exchanges and pressing and pressing and forcing Martinez to fight on his terms. Martinez was battling hard to try to hold on to his title as they fought toe-to-toe over the championship rounds but it seemed to most observers that Salido had done more than enough to secure the win but only one of the judges agreed with that scenario. Scores 115-113 for Martinez, 115-113 for Salido and 114-114. It was a good exciting fight and both parties seem to be agreeable to a rematch and Salido certainly deserves one although Martinez had said he would move up to lightweight irrespective of whether he won or lost so who knows. Now 32, “Rocky” Martinez is in his third reign as WBO super feather champion having lost the title in the past to Ricky Burns and Mikey Garcia but becoming a three-time champion when he beat Salido in April.”Siri” Salido, 34, had four spells as feather champion two with the IBF one of which was short-lived as he tested positive for a banned substance after winning the title and was promptly stripped, and two with the WBO. He was also WBO super feather champion until losing to Martinez. He has every chance of getting that WBO title if he gets a rematch or if Martinez relinquishes.

Martirosyan vs. Smith

Martirosyan gets majority decision of Smith but looks the clear winner. Martirosyan began by controlling the bout boxing on the outside with Smith landing some shots but generally having problems dealing with Martirosyan’s educated and sharp jab. Smith was trying to come in low to nullify the jab but in the third Martirosyan used that tactic against Smith catching the former IBF champion with a hard downward chopping right as Smith was coming in low. The punch looked to land far back on Smith’s head but the referee had no problem with it and so it counted as a knockdown. Smith got up and was not in serious trouble but by now Martirosyan had built a commanding lead. Smith began to have some success in the middle rounds as Martirosyan was troubled by a swelling which was threatening to close his right eye. It looked as though Smith’s mid fight charge might sweep him to victory but Martirosyan regrouped and had a match winning eighth round when he floored Smith with a left/right combination that put Smith down heavily. Smith got up but had lost the momentum and Martirosyan went on to box his way to what looked a clear victory. Two judges agreed giving the fight to Martirosyan by 97-91but the third judge somehow saw it all even at 96-96. The win puts the 29-year-old Armenian-born “Nightmare” back into the title mix after his loss to Jermell Charlo on a close unanimous decision in March. He is rated WBC3/IBF 10/WBO 13 so with Floyd Mayweather retiring the WBC title will be vacant and with No 1 Saul Alvarez tied up in a fight with Miguel Cotta for the WBC middle title in November he could be in line for a shot at the title in a return against No 2 Jermell Charlo and a chance to make amends for his loss to Demetrius Andrade for the vacant WBO title in 2013. Former champion Smith, 37, is 2-3 in his last 5 fights having lost his IBF title to Carlos Molina in 2013 and beaten by Erislandy Lara for the WBA secondary title in December. His options are few.

Gonzalez vs. Oquendo

Oquendo was unfazed by Gonzalez reputation as a big puncher and took the fight to the Mexican straight away. Gonzalez was backing off and under pressure until he threw a straight right and a left uppercut through Oquendo’s defence which sent the Puerto Rican stumbling back and down. He was up immediately and when the action resumed he took the fight to Gonzalez again with Gonzalez trading with Oquendo and throwing a barrage of hooks to try to capitalise on the knockdown. In the second Gonzalez was again forced onto the back foot. He was trying to use his jab to keep Oquendo out but Oquendo threw a left jab of his own and a right over the extended left of Gonzalez that put him down heavily on his back. Gonzalez got up badly shaken and at the bell went back to the wrong corner. He had also suffered a gash over his right eye in a clash of heads in the round. There were no more knockdowns and from the third round onwards there was back and forwards action with Oquendo most effective inside and Gonzalez at his best when slotting home his jabs and hooks when he had space for leverage. Neither fighter dominated with both having good spells and both getting home hard punches when they traded. They both showed the wear and tear from those bruising exchanges with Gonzalez cut over both eyes and with bumps and bruises on his face and Oquendo with a bad cut on his left eyelid from the eighth round. It was more of a war than a boxing match with Oquendo just managing to convince the judges he had done enough to earn the decision with one judge seeing it as one-sided which it never was. Scores an unrepresentative 98-90 and a more accurate 95-93 for Oquendo and 95-95. Important losses to Wilfredo Vazquez and Abner Mares had seen Oquendo drop out of the ratings but this win will propel him back in. Gonzalez was having his second fight at super feather after moving up following his crushing defeat by Gary Russell in March which cost him his WBC feather title. He had been given an easy route into the upper reaches of the WBC ratings with a victory over Japanese fighter Kazuki Hashimoto for the WBC Silver title which got him a No 3 spot. The Silver title was not a stake here but Oquendo should get into the top ten at least. Gonzalez has been around for so long I found myself feeling that Oquendo’s “youth” might be a factor then I realised that there was in fact less than two years age difference. Oquendo was 32 on 3 August and Gonzalez 33 at fight time but 34 on 15 September. What fooled me was Oquendo’s 153 total rounds of fighting in his career and Gonzalez 340.

Pearson vs. Trotter

Trotter gives Pearson some tough rounds before class came to the fore and Pearson gets another win. Canadian champion Trotter was aggressive over the early rounds trying to bully Pearson onto the back foot and close down the prospects punching leverage. That worked to a degree in that Pearson spent more time on the ropes than he was comfortable with but it also resulted in Trotter eating a lot of counters as he barged forward. In the sixth a counter southpaw right caught Trotter coming in and put him down heavily. The Canadian made it to his feet and just saw out the round. Pearson continued the dismantling job in the seventh and had Trotter staggering and the referee stopped the fight right at the bell. The former 24-year-old US National and PAL champion makes it ten wins by KO/TKO. The ND was when he took a split decision over Lanardo Tyner in a fight in February 2014 only for them both to test positive for a banned substance. Trotter, 31, took 2 ½ years out after losing inside a round to Adam Trupish in January 2010 but was coming off a one round stoppage of Walid Smitchet for the vacant Canadian title in October.

Gavril vbs. Sigmon

Romanian Gavril continues to rebuild after losing his unbeaten record against Elvin Ayala in March. Gavril showed a tight defence and some blazing combinations as he worked Sigmon over. Sigmon was trying to fire home counters to keep Gavril on the outside but Gavril was just too quick firing home hooks to the body and uppercuts before Sigmon could retaliate. It was a gradual breaking down process and by the end of the eighth round Sigmon’s corner got the message and pulled their man out of the fight. The Ayala loss still leaves a question mark over Gavril but with three wins over reasonable if not too testing opposition he is heading in the right direction. When Sigmon moves up in class he loses as successive defeats against Caleb Truax and J’Leon Love showed but he is an experienced fighter who has faced some tough opposition.

Theophane vs. Chambers

Brit Theophane is another on the road to recovery. The height and long reach of Chambers often gives his opponents problems but “Treasure” is an experienced and skilled fighter. He was far quicker getting inside Chambers’ reach and scoring with a whole range of hooks and uppercuts. His defence was also solid so Chambers was never really able to get into the fight. Chambers had some success with his jab and long rights but it was limited to one or two rounds with Theophane bossing the rest of the fight. Theophane never had Chambers in any serious trouble but other than that it was a punch perfect display as Theophane rolls up his sixth win in a row. Scores 100-90. 98-92 and 97-93.The 35-year-old Las Vegas-based Londoner only lost on split decision against Danny Garcia back in 2010 but hit a couple of bumps in the road after that losing close decisions to Darren Hamilton and Pablo Cesar Cano. He is now boxing as well as he ever has. After an early career loss Philadelphian Chambers had an unbeaten run of 21 fights before losing three on the bounce against Luis Collazo, Eddie Gomez and Andre Berto but he had returned with a win in May.

Davis vs. Dulay

Baltimore prospect Davis ends this one in just 94 seconds. Davis came out firing and a straight left shook Dulay who took a knee. He got up but was badly dazed and it did not get any better as Davis used another powerful left to send Dulay down for a second time. He made it to his feet but the referee decided he had seen enough and stopped the fight. Another former NGG champion and two-time PAL winner, the 20 year-old Davis has 11 wins by KO/TKO and 4 of his last 5 fights have each lasted less than two minutes. Filipino novice Dulay really just a 4 and 6 round prelim fighter who was overmatched by a long way.

 

Mashantucket, CN, USA: Super Welter: Jermall Charlo (22-0) W KO 3 Cornelius Bundrage (34-6,1ND) W. Light Heavy: Marcus Browne (16-0) W KO 1 Gabriel Campillo (25-8-1). Middle: Hugo Centeno Jr (23-0,1ND) W PTS 8 Lukasz Maciec (22-3-1). Middle: Peter Quillin (32-0-1) W KO 5 Mike Zerafa (17-2). Super Feather: Bryant Cruz (16-0) W PTS 8 Jonathan Perez (33-13,1ND)

Bundrage vs. Charlo

Charlo wins the IBF title as he floors Bundrage in each round before the fight is stopped. Both fighters were using jabs to feel each other out. Charlo had height and reach over Bundrage and was staying ring centre whilst Bundrage worked around him. On the two minute mark Bundrage stepped in under a Charlo left only to get caught with a chopping right to the side of the head which sent him tumbling back to the floor. He was up quickly and Charlo seemed to hold back his punches looking for an opening and Bundrage was able to see out the rest of the round without further trouble. Bundrage was keeping out of trouble in the second backing off and rarely trying to throw any punches. Charlo was also not letting his hands go looking for an opportunity to throw his right. In fact it was a short, stiff left jab the put Bundrage down skidding on his backside to the ropes. He was again up quickly and showed a bit more aggression as Charlo was being too cool and not exploiting the knockdown. In the third a wide left hook from Charlo staggered Bundrage and finally Charlo was throwing punches as he drove Bundrage across the ring and down in a corner. Bundrage was up quickly again and when the action resumed Charlo was chasing Bundrage around the ring with Bundrage bobbing and weaving and clinching to deny Charlo a clean shot. That could not go on and with Bundrage on the ropes Charlo landed a long hard right cross that sent the champion down on his side and the referee waived the fight off although Bundrage protested the stoppage. Charlo, 25, now has 17 wins by KO/TKO including 15 in his last 16 fights but has come up the easy way with no outstanding victims so still has to prove himself against a less worn boxer than Bundrage. He showed good skills, a cool head and a strong punch. Not sure what is next as his No 1 challenger is his twin brother Jermell who in some ways has better qualifications having beaten Vanes Martirosyan. I don’t think twins have ever fought each other for a world title. “K9” Bundrage looked all of his 42 years and this was only his second fight in the last 20 months which is hardly the best preparation. Having said that he has been IBF champion twice and to some extent has overachieved. Time to put the gloves away Cornelius.

Browne vs. Campillo

Browne finishes former WBA light heavy champion Campillo with a copy of devastating body punches. After some feeling out Browne fired a right/left/right combination to the head through Campillo’s guard. The Spaniard stumbled back and Browne drove him to the ropes following up with three left hands that did not really get home but the left in the earlier three-punch combination had shaken Campillo and he went down on one knee to escape the punches. Campillo was up at five and after counting to eight the referee had a good look at Campillo to make sure he was OK to continue. Browne then slammed home a brutal left to the short ribs of Campillo and dug a right into the solar plexus. Campillo was doubled up in pain and dropped to one knee and the referee immediately waived the fight off. Impressive performance by 24-year-old Olympian Brown who could soon be a player in a quality division. At 36 perhaps it is time for Campillo to put the gloves away as he is now 4-5 in his last 9 fights.

Centeno vs. Maciec

The Physical differences between the two fighters dictated the pattern of the fight and it remained that way for all eight rounds. The tall, skinny Centeno had loads of height and reach over stocky Pole Maciec who is really just a welter so was much the smaller man all around. Centeno needed to keep Maciec out and Maciec needed to get inside. Using a stiff jab and plenty of movement Centeno generally succeeded although when Maciec did get close he was thumping home body punches that eventually tired Centeno. The Oxnard fighter was also digging in some good left hooks to the body but neither he nor Maciec are power punchers so it was fatigue rather than power that affected both over the closing rounds. Centeno’s work had been the cleaner and more eye-catching and he took the unanimous decision on scores of 79-73 twice and 78-74. Centeno was coming off a good win over James De La Rosa in December but his lack of power is his Achilles heel. Maciec, 26, had lost only one of his last 13 fights and that he been to Gianluca Branco for the EBU title in 2013 and he had won five fights since then but Centeno was just too big physically.

Quillin vs. Zerafa

Quillin sets up a fight with Daniel Jacobs for the secondary WBA title with chilling kayo of Australian Zerafa. Both had some success in the first round but the highlight was a left hook from Quillin which staggered Zerafa. The same punch had Zerafa stumbling in the second. He was out-gunned but he banged back with punches of his own. Zerafa had his best round so far in the third scoring with an overhand right and a neat uppercut. Quillin was the one handing out punishment in the fourth as he again staggered Zerafa. Zerafa made a bright start to the fifth but a left hook backed him up to the ropes and a laser guided right crashed straight through the guard of Zerafa and exploded on his chin sending him down heavily. It was immediately apparent that Zerafa was in trouble and the referee waived off the fight to get Zerafa medical aid and the young Australian was fitted with a neck brace and stretchered out of the ring to hospital. Later he contacted Quillin to let him know that he was OK. First fight for “Kid Chocolate” since he came in overweight when challenging Andy Lee for the WBO title and fought out a draw in the fight. It is difficult to see the sense in him vacating his WBO title only to come back and take the challengers end of the purse when fighting Lee. However his fight with Jacobs will not just be for the secondary WBA title but also for bragging rights in Brooklyn. Zerafa, 23, gave it a good try here but was taking a step too far in class but hopefully when fully recovered he will be back again.

Cruz vs. Perez

Cruz gets another win but is given eight good testing rounds by “Popeye” Perez as the judges all see a different fight. Scores 80-72, 79-73 and 77-75. The 25-year-old “Pee Wee” a former NGG silver medallist is making steady progress. Four losses in a row for former Colombian super bantam Perez. Those four opponents had collective record of 75-0 so no one expects Perez to win these days.

 

London. England: Heavy Anthony Joshua (14-0) W TKO 1 Gary Cornish (21-1). Heavy: Dillian Whyte (16-0) W KO 3 Brian Minto (41-10). Super Light: John Wayne Hibbert (16-3) W TKO 10 David Ryan (17-9). Tommy Martin (13-0) W TKO 10 Mike Devine (13-4-1). Super Light: Cassius Connor (13-9-2) W PTS 10 Ricky Boylan (13-3). Fly: Charlie Edwards (5-0) W PTS 10 Louis Norman (10-1-1).

Joshua vs. Cornish

Joshua crushes Cornish to win his first major title. Cornish made a positive and brave start, perhaps too brave coming out and throwing some long hard jabs and putting Joshua on the back foot. He then tried mixing-it with Joshua and was nailed by a short right hook and went down. He took the eight count on one knee and then tried to fend off a predatory Joshua. As Cornish came forward he was caught by three successive rights and went down in the corner facing out into the crowd. He made it to his feet at nine but the referee had seen enough and Cornish did not protest and it was all over in 97 seconds. Joshua wins the vacant CBC title and retains his WBC International crown. That makes it 14 wins by KO/TKO scored in less than 25 rounds of boxing and no one has stayed around long enough to hear the bell for the fourth round. The 25-year-old Olympic gold medallist is rated WBC2/WBO 3/WBA 13 (12)/IBF 13(12). He faces a real test against the hard punching Whyte in December. The 28-year-old, 6’7” (201) “Highlander” Cornish was thrown in over his head which is strange after such a carefully planned career up to this point and he will need to go back and rebuild from here.

Whyte vs. Minto

Whyte shows his strengths and weaknesses as his power proves too much for the much lighter and smaller Minto. Whyte started out forcing Minto back with his jab and being a bit right hand happy looking to land a big bomb. Minto was ducking under them and over the last minute of the round the American was getting through with punches to head and body. He had a good degree of success getting inside the bigger man and landing a few punches and driving Whyte back for a short while but also put himself in the firing line. With just seconds to go Whyte finally landed a right that put Minto down on his knees. He was up at eight and as the bell had already sounded was able to walk back to his corner. Both came out aggressively in the second. Whyte was still looking to take Minto out with one punch rather than working his openings and Minto was coming forward to get inside and work there. Whyte shook Minto with two clubbing punches and then turned his attention to the body slamming home hooks from both hands. Minto was managing to avoid the worst of the punishment by laying his head on Whyte’s chest denying the big man room for leverage. Minto just kept pushing Whyte onto the back foot and was getting through with some wild swings. In the first exchange in the third Whyte landed a clubbing right inside. Minto’s knees wobbled and in delayed action he took a couple of steps back and went down on one knee and was counted out. The 27-year-old 6’4” (193cm) Londoner Whyte wins the vacant WBC International Silver title. He has won his last 12 fights by KO/TKO and no opponent on that run has survived to hear the bell for the fifth round. His opposition has been of lower quality than some of Joshua’s opponents but you can be sure their 12 December fight will be a bombs away event. Minto, 40, was giving away 5” in height and 37lbs in weight but managed to land enough punches to show that Whyte needs to tighten his defence. The former WBO cruiser title challenger was halted in seven rounds by New Zealand hope Joseph Parker in July last year and his only action since then had been in a Super 8 cruiserweight tournament in New Zealand in March where he lost to a fighter with a 1-2 record in the final.

Hibbert vs. Ryan

This was the third time these two have clashed and Hibbert won this time to reduce the deficit in their matches to 1-2 and wins the CBC and WBC International titles. Ryan looked to be on his way to retaining his titles for most of the fight as he was outboxing Hibbert and scoring feely. Ryan had the superior power and he put Hibbert down with a left to the body in the sixth and with Hibbert also cut the champion was well ahead and on his way to victory. That changed in the tenth when Ryan suddenly suffered a back injury and found it difficult to manoeuvre. He went down on one knee and when he got up Hibbert sensed the change and the chance and exploded with a series of punches and when a big right had Ryan in deep trouble the referee stopped the fight. The 30-year-old new champion from Essex was 8-2 in his last 10 fights with both losses being to Ryan. Their fight in May was a war with Ryan down twice and then putting Hibbert down twice to win on a ninth round stoppage and defend his CBC title and lift Hibbert’s WBC International title. This fight was not quite up to that standard as Ryan had things well in hand until that tenth round injury. Now the holder of two prestigious titles Hibbert has plenty of options open to him. Ryan can feel very unlucky. Success had come late in his career for the 32-year-old from Derby but wins over Paul McCloskey (24-2), Tyrone Nurse (29-1) and Hibbert had turned things around for him so now he has to rebuild.

Martin vs. Devine

English champion Martin wins the vacant WBA Continental title with stoppage of Devine. Martin looked to be on his way to a points win until a dramatic last round. Martin had lost a point in the ninth for some low blows and in the tenth another low blow put Devine down. The referee deducted another point and gave Devine some recovery time. However when the action resumed Martin banged away at Devine and had him in deep water when the referee stopped the fight. A controversial ending but Martin had been in control and looked the likeliest winner if it had gone to the scorecards. Martin, 21, the EU No 17, also has a win over Rick Boylan and will be looking to go upwards from here. Devine, 26, has lost his last three. One of those in the Prizefighter Tournament last year and another to useful Adam Dingsdale.

Connor vs. Boylan

Connor wins battle of Surrey fighters. Connor used his boxing skills to keep Boylan out and that worked for most of the time. Boylan was constantly coming forward trying to cut Connor’s space and punish him on the ropes but Connor managed to stay off the ropes and on the move and was a clear winner. Referee’s score 97-94. Connor a former Southern Area super light champion had been 2-4-1 going in but improves his figures with this well deserved victory. Boylan, 27, also a former Southern Area super light champion falls to 1-3 in his last 4 fights.

Edwards vs. Norman

Former top amateur star Edwards wins the English title in only his fifth fight. Edwards was quicker than Norman over the early rounds boxing cleverly on the back foot and scoring repeatedly with left hooks and short rights. Norman was trying to walk down the challenger and had some success as Edwards seemed to take a breather in the middle rounds. However he was still doing the cleaner and more eye-catching work landing his punches and not being there when Norman tried to counter. Norman tried to put in a big effort over the last couple of rounds but his desperation was just presenting Edwards with more chances to counter. Scores 100-90, 99-91 and 99-92. The 22-year-old former double ABA champion and European bronze medallist was a member of the English Elite Athlete programme and will be a threat in this division. Norman, 21, was making the second defence of his English title he won back in 2013. He has usually had to give up lots of weight to stay busy but here he met a better man at his own weight.

 

Frederikshavn, Denmark: Cruiser: Micki Nielsen (19-0) W KO 4 Alejandro E Valori (17-8). Super Middle: Patrick Nielsen (27-1) W KO 4 Samir Santos Barbosa (36-13-3). Super Middle: Tim Robin Lihaug (14-1) W PTS 8 Baptiste Castegnaro (6-5). Light Heavy: Rudy Markussen (39-3,1ND) W KO 1 Ramazi Gogichashvili (19-7-2). Feather: Dennis Ceylan (16-0-1) W PTS 8 Elvis Guillen (9-12-4,1ND). Light: Rashid Kassem (9-0) W KO 2 Roberto Priore (7-7).

Nielsen vs. Valori

Nielsen gets a win but not before Valori gets in a few punches of his own. In fact the Argentinian probably just shaded the first round and he was willing to stand toe-to-toe with Nielsen in the second and third rounds. The local fighter found his big punch in the fourth. A southpaw left sent Valori tumbling through the ropes and he was counted out. Exciting whilst it lasted. The 22-year-old 6’3” (190cm) Dane gets back on the KO/TKO trail after three points wins in a row. He has 13 wins by KO/TKO and is still very much on a learning curve. Former Argentinian champion Valori, 32, has not found Europe a welcoming place as in his previous two trips across the Atlantic he has been stopped by Nathan Cleverly and outpointed by Noel Gevor but he was coming off a win at home.

Nielsen vs. Barbosa

A predictable family double and both inside four rounds. Nielsen used his educated southpaw jab to control the opening round although Barbosa looked lively and useful. Nielsen opened up in the second and then it was a different matter as Barbosa was punished heavily. A left to the head put Barbosa down and he did well to survive the round. In the third the Brazilian used his experience to slow the fight and survive. Nielsen came out in the fourth to finish things and a left to the body put Barbosa down and he could not beat the count. The 24-year-old elder brother of Micki lost to Dmitry Chudinov for the interim WBA middle title in June last year and has since moved up to super middle and has won 5 in a row. He now has 13 wins by KO/TKO. The drums are now beating for a huge local fight with Rudy Markussen. Nielsen has said there are still a few details to be agreed but he is up for the fight. Barbosa, 35, is really just a middleweight being a former Brazilian champion. He suffered consecutive losses last year in fights against Adam Etches and Les Sherrington.

Lihaug vs. Castegnaro

Norwegian Lihaug gets unanimous decision but not an impressive performance. Frenchman Castegnaro started well enough and over the first two rounds it was a fairly equal fight. However from the third Castegnaro’s work rate dropped and Lihaug started to edge ahead. The Norwegian was winning the rounds but Castegnaro remained very much in the fight and was catching Lihaug with punches too often for it to be comfortable for Lihaug. The Norwegian stepped up the pace over the last two rounds and was a clear winner but at a struggle. Scores 79-73 for Lihaug from all three judges. Now 11 wins in a row for the 22-year-old Lihaug. Castegnaro, 24, has now lost 3 of his last 4 fights and is really just a 4 & 6 round fighter.

Markussen vs. Gogichashvili

Markussen swats aside Georgian on his return to the ring and clears the way for a fight with Patrick Nielsen. In his first fight since December 2012 Markussen wasted no time in disposing of Gogichashvili. An overhand right from the “Big Hitter” floored Gogichashvili early and although he got up he was put down again and the referee stopped the fight with just one second left in the first round. The 38-year-old former IBF title challenger and undefeated EBU champion was pushed into semi-retirement by a fifth round kayo loss to Brian Magee for the interim WBA title in February 2012. He made a brief re-appearance with a low level first round win in December that year. It remains to be seen how much he has left as this win just showed he could punch which has never been in doubt. Now six losses by KO/TKO for Gogichashvili who like most Georgians wins at home and loses away.

Ceylan vs. Guillen

Really just paid sparring for the classy Ceylan. The Dane had height, reach and far superior skill. Guillen had a willingness to take punishment, go the eight rounds and get paid. There were a couple of occasions when it looked as though Ceylan might end it inside the distance. He made a big effort in the seventh but Guillen took the punches and stayed to the final bell. Scores 80-71 twice and 80-72. The 26-year-old former Olympian is rated No 5 with the EBU but is not ready for a title fight yet. First fight outside Nicaragua for Guillen. Curiously in his last 10 fights before this one seven had ended in split or majority verdicts.

Kassem vs. Priore

Too easy for hard punching hope Kassem. The young Dane scored with jolting punches from both hands in the first round with Priore already resorting to spitting out his mouthguard to gain some breathing space. It did not really help him as Kassem put him down and out with a right in the second. Now 7 wins by KO/TKO for the 24-year-old Kassem “The Dream” including four inside the distance finishes in his last 4 fights. Italian Priore has lost his last three and suffered his second loss by KO/TKO.

 

Bruay-la-Buissiere, France: Fly: Thomas Masson (14-3-1) W PTS 12 Silvio Olteanu (15-8-1). Fly: Vincent Legrand (18-0) W PTS 6 Arnoldo Solano (14-12).

Masson vs. Olteanu

Masson adds another European title to the French collection with points win over Romanian veteran Olteanu for the vacant EBU title. This was always going to be a battle between the left jab of Masson and the hooks and uppercuts of Olteanu. The Frenchman had height and reach (5’6” 170cm vs. 5’2” 158cm) on his side with Olteanu having to get inside and work the body to wins. Yet another factor was that Masson had never gone twelve rounds before. The result was an aggressive start by Spanish-based Olteanu having some success using clever movement to get inside and a cautious one by local fighter Masson making good use of his physical advantages. Olteanu did enough to build a small lead before fading in the middle rounds as Masson got his range and used good uppercuts to catch Olteanu as he tried to get close. The twelve year age difference told as over the late rounds Masson remained strong and Olteanu slowed a little but was always competitive and dangerous with his hooks. In the end Masson was a clear winner on scores of 117-111, 117-113 and 116-113 and along with Michel Soro, Cedric Vitu, Romain Jacob and Hadillah Mohoumadi gives France five current European champions. The 25-year-old home town fighter was beaten by Brit Ashley Sexton back in 2012 but had racked up six good domestic wins on his way to the title. He is a smart boxer but his lack of power will be a drawback at a higher level. I feel sorry for little Olteanu as at 37 he may be near the end of the road. Back in 2010 a win over world rated Bernard Inom (20-1-1) led later that year to a challenge to Daiki Kameda for the WBA title. He went to Japan and only lost on a split decision with one judge (not European) having him the winner by 118-110. He lost on a majority decision to Wilbert Uicab for the WBC Silver title but won the EBU title and defended it with a win over former world title challenger Andrea Sarritzu in 2012. Then the fights dried up and he never defended the title and had only one fight in the next 2 ½ years. He just never got the breaks.

Legrand vs. Solano

Legrand stays unbeaten with unanimous victory over Nicaraguan Solano. As with Masson European Union champion Legrand is tall for a flyweight at 5’8 ½” 174cm, and he had no trouble in outboxing the willing but limited Solano. Scores 59-55 twice and 60-54. There could be a complication here as I believe the 24-year-old southpaw is the son of Masson’s trainer and comes from the same home town as Masson. He is No 3 in the EBU ratings but whether the two gym mates would fight each other I don’t know. Spanish-based Solano has lost his last 8 fights. No weights given but when Solano fought Stuart Hall seven days earlier he was 122lbs!

 

Preston, England: Feather: Tshifihiwa Munyai (27-4-1) W KO 10 Oscar Chauke (34-10-3). Light: Malcolm Klassen (31-6-2) W PTS 6 Rey Cajina (13-28-4).

Chauke vs. Munyai

This all-South African contest was to have been a defence of his IBF Inter-Continental title for Chauke but after making the weight at the first weigh-in Munyai was over the allowed increase under IBF rules at the check weigh in so it was a non-title fight. These two were well matched and Chauke made the better start using a strong left jab to put Munyai on the back foot and pressing the fight. In the second Munyai was trying to duck under Chauke’s jab and work the body but Chauke was still in control. That was also the case for much of the third until Munyai worked Chauke into a corner and slammed over a left to the head and a right to the body which put Chauke down. He was up at and looked shaky but Munyai was wild with a couple of his punches and it was Chauke slamming home hooks and crosses and Munyai under fire as the round ended. From that point the fight changed. Chauke’s jab lost its sting and Munyai now knew he could hurt Chauke and was bossing the action. Chauke remained competitive still trying to work the jab but more often Munyai was ducking under it and banging home punches to the body. In the last round Munyai was allowing Chauke to do the leading but the big punches were coming from Munyai. He was muscling Chauke around the ring and when Chauke missed with a tired right Munyai came up with a left hook to Chauke’s unprotected chin. Chauke took a couple of steps back and then went down on his backside propped up by the ropes. He managed to roll up to his knees but could get no further and was counted out, “The Atomic Spider” Munyai, 30, makes it 15 wins by KO/TKO. The former undefeated CBC bantam champion suffered back-to-back losses last year in tough assignments against Scott Quigg and Paulus Ambunda but has now scored three wins since moving his base to England. “Golden Boy” Chauke, 34, the South African and WBFound super bantam champion was 6-1-1 in his last 8 fights going in but was out-powered here.

Klassen vs. Cajina

Klassen starts his British campaign with a wide unanimous verdict over perennial loser Cajina. The gap in glass here was more of a chasm than a gap. After a slow start Klassen took over and easily outboxed the Nicaraguan who rarely wins but usually goes the distance. The perfect foil for Klassen as he continues his settling down process at lightweight. He won clearly 59-56 on the referee’s card and after beating former WBC secondary title holder Paulus Moses in March the 33-year-old former two-time IBF super feather champion will be looking for sterner tests in future. Cajina, 32, is 0-11-1 in his last 12 fights but he is not there to win but to lose and stay as many rounds as possible and give the home opponent some rounds of work. Job done.

 

Catamarca, Argentina: Welter: Cesar M Barrionuevo (28-3-2.1ND) W TKO 8 Victor H Velasquez (17-8). Barrionuevo wins the Argentinian title and defends his WBC Latino title with stoppage of Argentinian champion Velazquez. Southpaw Barrionuevo had a psychological edge having stopped Velasquez inside a round in their previous meeting. That was back in 2011 but the way Barrionuevo started it might have been only yesterday. He was unloading hooks and uppercuts over the first two rounds and in the third a right to the head put Velasquez down. Velasquez survived and tried to turn the tide but Barrionuevo was pelting him with hard combinations to head and body and by the eighth Velasquez was unravelling. By the end of the round he was well beaten and could hardly see through the swelling by his right eye. The doctor examined him in his corner and would not let Velasquez come out for the eighth. The 26-year-old from Salta makes it 19 wins by KO/TKO. He has lost only one of his last 26 fights and he reversed that with an inside the distance victory. Velasquez, 33, was making the second defence of the national title he won with a victory over Sebastian Lujan.

 

Paranque City, Philippines: Light Fly: Jonathan Taconing (22-2-1) W TEC DEC 10 Jomar Fajardo (14-9-2). Super Feather: Juan Martin Elorde (18-1-1) W TKO 6 Yakobus Heluka (8-13-2). Super Bantam: Juan Miguel Elorde (19-1) W KO 1 Arnold Mau.

Taconing vs. Fajardo

“Lightning” Taconing well on his way to victory when a cut suffered in a clash of heads earlier in the fight becomes too bad for him to continue. One of the top Filipino talents Taconing used a stiff jab to control the early rounds and he put Fajardo down in the second only for the referee to rule it a slip. There was no argument about the knockdown Taconing scored in the fourth and a desperate Fajardo was given his first warning over low punches. A clash of heads saw both fighters suffer cuts in the fifth with Taconing coming off worst with cuts over both eyes. Fajardo halted Taconing’s march with a hard uppercut in the sixth but he spoiled his good work with a couple of barrages of low punches which saw the referee deduct two points from Fajardo. They were exchanging punches constantly in the eighth and ninth but by the tenth Taconing’s cuts were too bad for the fight to continue and it went to the cards. Scores 98-90, 97-91 and 96-91 all for Taconing. The 28-year-old southpaw retains the OPBF title. He has lost only one of his last 20 fights and that was a technical decision in a challenge to Thai Kompayak for the WBC title in 2012. He has scored 9 wins since then 8 of them by KO/TKO. He is No 1 with the WBC so mandatory challenger to Pedro Guevara. Fajardo, 23, has 5 losses and a draw in his last 6 fights but the draw was a real surprise. The unsung Filipino fought former undefeated IBF champion Francisco Rodriguez to a split draw in November but lost on points to Rodriguez in January.

Elorde vs. Heluka

It is difficult to imagine boxing in the Philippines without an Elorde. Elorde found Indonesian Heluka an awkward but not threatening opponent. He stuck to his task flooring Heluka in the first and third rounds and ended with two knockdowns in the sixth. The 30-year-old southpaw, the WBO No 6, has 6 wins and a technical draw in his last 7 fights. He is the grandson of the late great Flash Elorde. Indonesian Heluka has lost 8 of his last 9 fights but his record is probably incomplete.

Elorde vs. Mau

Younger brother Juan Miguel took only 90 seconds to put Indonesian Mau down and out. Now 9 wins in a row for the WBO No 11. Mau came in as a late replacement and again his record is probably incomplete.