WORLD TITLE SHOWS:
New York, NY, USA: Middle: Demetrius Andrade (27-0) W TKO 12 Artur Akavov (19-3). Super Bantam T J Doheny (21-0 W TKO 11 Ryohei Takahashi (16-4-1). Super Light: Pablo Cano (32-7-1,1ND) W TKO 1Jorge Linares (45-5). Welter: Chris Algieri (23-3) W PTS 10 Daniel Gonzalez (17-2-1).
Andrade vs. Akavov
Andrade makes a successful first defence of his WBO title with a controversial late stoppage of Russian Akavov. Andrade was way ahead on all three cards but Akavov was in no trouble and strongly protested the stoppage.
Comfortable first round for Andrade. He used his southpaw jab to score at distance and found gaps to land some quick combinations. Akavov, also a southpaw, tried to come forward but could not get past Andrade’s jab.
Score: 10-9 Andrade
Akavov was much more aggressive in this round leaping in with attacks and managing to land with some body punches. Andrade continued to control the action with his reach advantage, superior hand speed and clever movement and took the round.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 20-18
Andrade used his jab to outscore Akavov but he was not pressing his attacks and not working at full speed. The best punch of the round was a left uppercut to the head from Akavov but it was Andrade’s round.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 30-27
Andrade upped his pace in this one. He was following up behind his jab moving inside and scoring with hooks. Akavov showed plenty of movement and good footwork but Andrade launched a fierce attack before the bell and scored with some hard lefts.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 40-36
Official Scores: Judge Morgan 40-36 Andrade, Judge Nace 39-37 Andrade, Judge Paolillo 40-36 Andrade
A totally one-sided round as Andrade kept his jab in Akavov’s face and threw right hooks to the body trying to bring Akavov’s high guard down. Akavov just could not get past the jab and hardly landed a punch.
Score 10-9 Andrade Andrade 50-45
For round six read round five. It was the same jab, jab and occasional right hook to the body from Andrade whilst Akavov circled the ring looking for an opening but never seeing one.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 60-54
The pattern continued with Andrade stabbing out his jab and throwing a few hooks to the body. With his crouching style and high guard Akavov was not an easy target but with his degree of command it was disappointing that Andrade was not applying more pressure and the fight was too one-sided to be entertaining.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 70-63
Andrade was still sticking to his jab and occasionally lefts to the body but was finding Akavov an elusive target. Andrade did throw one extended combination which was notable as the first he had thrown in the fight. Akavov was looking crude and bereft of any idea of how to get into the fight.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 80-72
Official Scores: Morgan 80-72 Andrade, Nace 79-73 Andrade, Paolillo 80-72 Andrade
Finally Akavov started to do what he should have been doing from round one. He was bundling his way past Andrade’s jab and firing hooks inside. He landed a good left to the chin and later a strong left/right series which also landed on Andrade’s head. He wasn’t hurting Andrade but he was hustling him out of his comfort zone and with Andrade hardly throwing a punch it was Akavov’s round.
Score: 10-9 Akavov Andrade 89-82
A clash of heads early in this round saw Akavov suffer a bad cut over his right eye. That spurred on Andrade and sent Akavov onto the back foot again. Andrade pressed hard letting go with his punches. Akavov was trying to protect the cut and not looking to get involved in any trading.
Score: Score 10-9 Andrade Andrade 99-91
The cut was an ugly, wide wound. Andrade marched forward for the whole round but after some early success he was having trouble landing his punches on the elusive Russian and Akavov was never really in any danger.
Score: 10-9 Andrade Andrade 109-100
The ending was controversial. After some early fire Andrade was again just using his jab. Akavov was circling the ring trying to stay out of trouble. With just over thirty seconds left a right from Andrade was blocked by Akavov but the power saw him sliding along the ropes. He was not hurt or shaken by the punch but suddenly the referee wrapped him in his arms and stopped the fight. Akavov protested long and strong and rightly and Andrade looked surprise at the ending.
Andrade retains his WBO title. He has previously held the WBO and secondary WBA titles at super welterweight but having been stripped off the first and vacated the second this is only the second time he has defended a title. He did not sparkle here against a limited challenger. He was calling out Gennady Golovkin but he will have to fight a lot better than he did in this showing to stand any chance against Golovkin. Russian Akavov gave Billy Joe Saunders a tough night in 2016 but there are no wins over any names on his record. Although Akavov is Russian the competition for places in the National team was so fierce that Akavov fought in Estonia winning the Estonian title and competing for Estonia at the European and World Championships. He proved an awkward opponent for Andrade but his limitations were exposed in this fight.
Doheny vs. Takahashi
Doheny opens his account in the USA with a stoppage of brave but very limited challenger Takahashi.
Both fighters made a fast start with plenty of movement and quick probing jabs. Doheny found the range for his southpaw lefts and landed some right hooks and a straight right to the body hurt Takahashi. The challenger connected late in the round with a right but it was Doheny’s round
Score: 10-9 Doheny
A clash of heads early in the second saw both men. Doheny suffered a vertical cut to the right of the bridge of his nose and Takahashi high on the left of the bridge of his nose. Takahashi was careless with his attacks and Doheny was able to counter him with some strong lefts and it was his round.
Score 10-9 Doheny Doheny 20-18
Takahashi was untidy with his attacks and Doheny was making him pay with countering lefts. Doheny landed a powerful hook to the body and followed that with right to the head. Takahashi started to fall but grabbed Doheny’s right arm with both hands. That left him without a guard and Doheny landed three lefts as Takahashi tumbled back and down. He was up quickly and survived but at the expense of a few more hefty thumps from Doheny.
Score: 10-8 Doheny Doheny 30-26
Clear round for Doheny. He was finding gaps for his right jab and lefts to the body and on the back foot he was stopping Takahashi in his tracks with counters. Takahashi was resorting to wild leaping attacks with no accuracy.
Score: 10-9 Doheny Doheny 40-35
Official Scores: Judge Bruni 40-35 Doheny, Judge Perez 40-35 Doheny, Judge Taylor 40-35 Doheny
Takahashi attacked at a furious pace throughout the three minute. He was storming forward constantly switching guards and throwing punches. The guard changes were only succeeding in leaving him unbalanced and apart from one strong right he was swishing air. Doheny was coolly picking him off with sharp counters and easily avoiding or blocking Takahashi’s punches.
Score 10-9 Doheny Doheny 50-44
Takahashi did a little better in this one managing to get inside and score with some hooks. Doheny was hardly wasting a punch constantly getting through with his jab and long lefts and he attacked strongly driving Takahashi back at the end of the round.
Score: 10-9 Doheny Doheny 60-53
Classy boxing by Doheny in this round. He was slotting home jabs and left hooks. Takahashi kept piling forward and Doheny was moving and countering and then slipping inside to land a bunch of punches and getting out before Takahashi could respond.
Score: Score 10-9 Doheny Doheny 70-62
Concerned over the punishment Takahashi was taking the referee asked the doctor’s to examine him before the start of the round but he was given the OK to continue. Takahashi marched forward throwing punches and with the volume he was throwing it was guaranteed some would get through. However Doheny was landing the cleaner and harder punches and Takahashi’s face was swelling from the punishment.
Score: 10-9 Doheny Doheny 80-71
Official Scores: Bruni 80-71 Doheny, Perez 80-71 Doheny, Taylor 80-71 Doheny
A close round with Doheny not as busy or as active and Takahashi slowing but still swinging. Doheny sent Takahashi stumbling back with a left to the head and again was more accurate but it was a close round.
Score: 10-9 Doheny Doheny 90-80
Takahashi’s round. He was able to score with his straight right throughout the round. He kept Doheny busy fending off his punches and despite a strong finish from Doheny had just done enough to edge the round.
Score: 10-9 Takahashi Doheny 99-90
Takahashi walked into trouble in this one. Doheny countered him with a series of head punches. Takahashi tried to keep punching but the fire had gone out of his work and as Doheny continued to connect with hard shots the referee stepped in and stopped the fight.
The Australian-based Irishman was making the first defence of his IBF title and will now be looking for a unification match with WBA champion Daniel Roman. He has no mandatory challenger so that looks a fight that could happen. Doheny, 32, has never fought in Ireland as a professional. He moved to Australia after losses to John Joe Nevin cost him his chance to go to the 2008 Olympics. He worked as a scaffolder in Australia before deciding to turn pro out there and work his way to a world title. Takahashi was a very modest challenger. He was 10-10 as an amateur and lost a wide unanimous decision to Andrew Moloney in Australia in 2016. He also dropped a decision to novice Yuki Iriguchi in 2017. He owed his IBF rating to winning the IBF Pan Pacific title and even after entering the IBF top 15 for that achievement he was still only rated No 11 in the Japanese ratings. The IBF lifted him to No 10 without him fighting and at the same time as the Japanese Commission dropped him to No 12! He showed guts but very little else.
Cano v s. Linares
Cano destroys Linares with three knockdowns in the opening round to spring a major upset. Just ten seconds into the first round Cano threw a three punch combination. The first two punches missed but the third, a downward chopping right, connected on the head of Linares and he went back and down. Linares was up immediately and Cano stormed forward throwing punches. Linares was on the back foot countering but another right to the head saw Linares drop to one knee. Again he was up quickly and Cano jumped on him forcing him back throwing rights. Linares was dropped for the third time by another right. He had not looked badly shaken by the first two knockdowns but this time it was obvious that he was hurt as he climbed shakily to his feet as the count reached eight. Cano connected with two heavy head punchers which staggered Linares and then with two more punches and Linares stumbled back to the ropes on unsteady legs and the referee stepped in and stopped the fight. When doing some notes for this report I noted that Cano was 2-3 in his last five fights and looked to be on the slide! Instead the 29-year-old Mexican, a former WBA interim champion, has scored the best win of his career and registered victory No 22 by KO/TKO. Linares was rated No 2 by the WBC and No 4 with the WBO. With many of the top super lightweight tied up in the WSSB Tournament Cano may have put himself in line for an early title shot. As for Linares all five of his losses have come by way of KO/TKO. After his loss to Vasiliy Lomachenko in May he had shown good form in stopping Abner Cotto (23-3) but here he looked vulnerable with very little punch resistance. He has said he will drop back down to lightweight but his time at the top might be over.
Algieri vs. Gonzalez
Algieri only just scrapes past Gonzalez despite the scores making it look a comfortable win. The former WBO super light champion made a good enough start. He used slick movement and quick, accurate punches to build a lead over Gonzalez but the younger fighter was making the rounds close. A clash of heads in the fourth saw Algieri suffer a cut on his left cheek bone and that seemed to make him more cautious and he was boxing mainly on the back foot after that. Gradually Gonzalez took over the fight with Algieri boxing cleverly but under pressure and tiring. Algieri seemed to have very little left over the closing rounds but he held on and the judges decided that Algieri’s early work was enough to earn the decision. Scores 98-92, 97-93 and 96-94 for Algieri. He had just done enough to edge it but the scoring was loudly booed with the last tally looking the more accurate. Algieri, 34, put in a magnificent effort when climbing off the floor twice in the first round to lift the WBO super light title from Ruslan Provodnikov. It was downhill from there against super tough opposition as he lost his title to Manny Pacquiao and was beaten by Amir Khan and Errol Spence. He took a couple of years out after the Spence loss before returning with a win last November but the signs in this performance were not promising. Gonzalez’s only other loss was a third round stoppage by Danny O’Connor in 2017.
Las Vegas, NV, USA: Welter: Manny Pacquiao (61-7-2) W PTS 12 Adrien Broner (33-4-1,1ND ). Bantam: Nordine Oubaali (15-0) W PTS 12 Rau’shee Warren (16-3,1ND). Light Heavy: Marcus Browne (23-0) W PTS 12 Badou Jack (22-2-3). Feather: Hugo Ruiz (39-4) W PTS 10 Alberto Guevara (27-4). Light: George Kambosos (16-0) W PTS 8 Rey Perez (24-11). Welter: Jonathan Steele (9-2-1) W PTS 8 Jayar Inson (18-2).
Pacquiao vs. Broner
Pacquiao retains the secondary WBA title with comfortable unanimous decision over a disappointing Broner in a fight without highlights
Not a great deal of excitement in the first round. Pacquiao was the one doing the attacking with Broner looking to counter but being just too slow to block the lefts from Pacquiao which gave him the round.
Score: 10-9 Pacquiao
Both were still probing looking for openings in the second. Broner scored with a good counter right but again Pacquiao was quicker getting past Broner’s jab and landing lefts inside.
Score 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 20-18
Clear round for Pacquiao. He was scoring with his jab and then darting inside and landing with hooks from both hands. Broner was just pushing out his jab and occasionally throwing single rights and being totally outworked by Pacquiao.
Score: 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 30-27
Broner had given three rounds away-or rather Pacquiao had taking them- because Broner was throwing so few punches. Pacquiao continued to take the fight to Broner but this time Broner was letting his hands go more and had success early and late in the round doing just enough to take it.
Score: 10-9 Broner Pacquiao 39-37
Official Scores: Judge Cheatham 39-37 Pacquiao, Judge Moretti 39-37 Pacquiao, Judge Feldman 39-37 Pacquiao
Broner connected with a good right early in this round and threw a few more punches and worked harder. Pacquiao was still landing with his right jabs and quick hooks and just did enough to shade a close round.
Score: 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 49-46
Pacquiao continued to be the man coming forward. He was jabbing to the body and then jumping with left hooks. A body punch had Broner backing up and looking hurt. Broner scored with a left at the bell. Pacquiao’s round.
Score: 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 59-55
No doubt about it Pacquiao’s round. He was outboxing and outscoring Broner early and then he really cut loose. He took Broner to the ropes and landed a series of lefts to the head. Broner escaped by holding on to Pacquiao and trying to force him down. Pacquiao then trapped Broner in a corner and connected with a series of punches with Broner again escaping only to be once more against the ropes and taking more punches at the bell.
Score 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 69-64
A close round. Pacquiao was coming forward but not attacking quickly enough to get to Broner. Pacquiao did land a heavy right but Broner got though with some straight rights and just did enough to take the points.
Score: 10-9 Broner Pacquiao 78-74
Official Scores: Cheatham 77-75, Moretti 79-73, Feldman 77-75
This round was progressing towards another close round to Pacquiao as he was getting his punches off first and Broner was too slow with his counters. Pacquiao then landed a left to the head that saw Broner stumbling back and almost going down but he regained his balance staggering back to the ropes where Pacquiao trapped him and unloaded a series of punches with Broner just covering up.
Score 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 88-83
A close round without a great deal of success for either boxer. Pacquiao continued to come forward but Broner was throwing a few more punches and used good movement to skip away from Pacquiao’s attacks and just took the round
Score: 10-9 Broner Pacquiao 97-93
Another close round. The same pattern of Pacquiao coming forward and Broner trying to counter with neither having a great deal of success. It was close but Pacquiao’s jabs just gave him the edge.
Score: 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 107-102
Pacquiao fought the last round as if it was one he needed to win and Broner as if it was one he could afford to lose and still win the fight. As a result Pacquiao worked with his jab and moved inside with left hooks whereas Broner circled the ring on his toes looking to avoid contact.
Score 10-9 Pacquiao Pacquiao 117-111
Official scores: Cheatham 116-112, Moretti 117-111, Feldman 116-112 all for Pacquiao.
At forty the Filipino Wonder is still a quality fighter who was just too quick and too busy for the passive Broner. There was some concern over the report that Pacquiao had suffered a scratched cornea in his left eye but it is not thought to be a career threatening injury. It is incredible to think that Pacquiao won his first world title 20 years ago at flyweight. He is now 16-4-2 in world title fights (18-4-2 if you count the WBA secondary title) and is still very much a man in demand. Naturally there is speculation over a third fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr but many more options are out there for Pacquiao with challengers lining up. No mention of a fight with the real WBA welter champion Keith Thurman which is a pity as whether it is Pacquiao or anyone else holding the secondary title does not make him the real champion. Broner never looked like winning this one and his reluctance to engage in any sustained exchanges killed any hope of an entertaining fight. It strikes me that The Problem’s biggest problem is himself. He has great skill but in this fight it was smoke and mirrors with little real substance.
Oubaali vs. Warren
Frenchman Oubaali lifts the vacant WBC title with comprehensive unanimous victory over Warren in a fight between two highly skilled little fighters.
A close open round saw Oubaali the aggressor coming in behind his right jab and firing hooks to the body. Warren came to life over the second half of the round with a series of hooks to just take the round
Score: 10-9 Warren
Another close round. These are two very quick very clever boxers. Oubaali was again taking the fight to Warren who was looking to counter with his left. Oubaali was scoring with jabs to head and body and despite a flurry of punches late in the round from Warren it was Oubaali’s.
Score 10-9 Oubaali Tied 19-19
Warren was on the front foot stabbing out his jab early in this round but then Oubaali began to launch fierce attacks forcing Warren back and scoring with right hooks. Warren rallied before the bell but it was a round for Oubaali.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 29-28
A better round for Warren. He was on the front foot for much of the round piecing the Frenchman’s guard with jabs and when Oubaali did attack Warren was skipping out of distance and connecting with sharp counters.
Score: 10-9 Warren Tied 38-38
Official scores; Judge Lederman 39-37 Oubaali, Judge Weisfeld 39-37 Oubaali and Judge Ocasio 39-37 Warren
Warren made a confident start but Oubaali picked up the pace springing to the attack and getting through with his right jab and left hooks. Warren rallied late in the round as they both landed good punches but it was Oubaali’s round.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 48-47
A good round for Oubaali. He was getting through with his quick attacks and Warren was finding it hard to land any punches due to the pressure from Oubaali. That pressure led to some fierce exchanges and the Frenchman landed the best punch so far in the shape of a left hook to the head that stung Warren.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 58-56
War broke out in this one. For much of the round Warren was slotting home jabs and Oubaali scoring with his right hook. After another fierce attack from Oubaali they just stood and traded punch after punch with Oubaali getting the better of the wild exchanges rocking Warren with hooks from both hands.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 68-65
A closer round but another one for Oubaali. Warren came forward early and had some success with fast rights but Oubaali took the round with late attacks. He was hustling and harrying Warren forcing him to stand and trade and catching Warren with right hooks.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 78-74
Official scores: Judge Lederman 78-74 Oubaali, Judge Weisfeld 79-73 Oubaali and Judge Ocasio 76-76
Warren managed to put Oubaali on the back foot at the start of this round and scored well with his jabs. From there Warren lost control of the round as Oubaali stormed forward scoring with hooks and that led to some more furious exchanges with Oubaali throwing more and landing more particularly with his right hooks.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 88-83
Another round for Oubaali but bit a bit closer. Warren knew he was behind so he came forward throughout the round stabbing his jab and firing lefts. Oubaali was again finding the target with his right hooks and he outscored Warren in more furious exchanges.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 98-92
Three minutes of pressure from Warren. He came forward throughout the round throwing hooks. He cut down Oubaali’s space making it more difficult for Oubaali to launch his attacks and he was also ducking under the rights that had served Oubaali so well and outlanding Oubaali.
Score: 10-9 Warren Oubaali 107-102
Oubaali simply outpunched Warren in the last. Warren kept padding forward but it was Oubaali doing the scoring with his quick leaping attacks and hooks from both hands.
Score: 10-9 Oubaali Oubaali 117-111
Official scores: Judge Lederman 116-112, Judge Weisfeld117-111and Judge Ocasio115-113 all for Oubaali.
Great win for 32-year-old Oubaali as he repeats a victory he scored over Warren at the 2012 Olympics. He showed skill and attacking flair and outworked Warren. He is of Moroccan descent and the thirteenth born of a family of eighteen children. Warren, a former World Champion and three-time Olympian as an amateur and a former WBA champion as a pro, is a supremely gifted fighter but lacked the power to impress himself in this fight and never really had an answer to the fierce attacks of Oubaali. He has the skill to trouble any fighter in the division but that lack of power is a handicap.
Browne vs. Jack
Browne wins the vacant interim WBA title with wide unanimous decision over a very bloodied Jack.
Confident start from Browne. He used his longer reach to score from distance and was connecting with long southpaw lefts. Jack was having trouble getting past the jab of Browne and was being caught with counters as he moved in.
Score: 10-9 Browne
Jack had a little more success with his rights in this round but again Browne was doing most of the scoring. He was showing his right jab to Jack without looking to land but using it as a foil for darting straight lefts and ended the round with a flurry of punches.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 20-18
Jack tried to get inside more in this round and had some success but he was still finding Browne’s jab a barrier and a distraction. Browne was scoring with long lefts and it was a close round but Browne just took it.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 30-27
A better round for Jack. He was able to trap Browne on the ropes and score inside. Browne was not as accurate with his jab and was doing a lot of holding. A close round but Jack shaded it.
Score: 10-9 Jack Browne 39-37
Official Scores: Judge Cheek 39-37 Browne, Judge DeLuca 38-38, Judge Trella 40-36 Browne
This was an untidy round. Browne was scoring with quick punches and then falling inside and clinching to stop Jack working. He was warned twice for holding but over the last minute he dominated the action scoring with a series of punches from both hands.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 49-46
Another round for Browne. He was piercing Jack’s guard with both his right jab and straight lefts. Jack was coming up short with his punches at distance and Browne was preventing him from working in close by clinching.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 59-55
Brown was continuing to outbox Jack on the outside and hold inside. As they both ducked forward there was a clash of heads and Jack turned away pawing at his forehead above the bridge of his nose and there was blood seeping from a long vertical gash. The referee had the doctor examine the cut but Jack was allowed to continue. He tried to get inside but once again Browne held him in a clinch. The referee had seen enough of that from Browne and he indicated a point deduction for holding. Jack continued to drive forward but was walking onto counters and still Browne was holding. Browne’s careless headwork seemed to be the main cause of the cut.
Score: 10(-1)-9 Browne so a 9-9 round Browne 68-64
The cut was severe enough to distract anyone and the blood was dripping into Jacks right eye. Browne found Jack and easy target for his jabs and straight rights and dominated the round.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 78-73
Official Scores: Cheek 78-74, DeLuca 77-74, Trella 79-72 all for Browne
The cut had drained the confidence out of Jack and Browne was able to control the fight. He was finding gaps for his right jab and straight lefts. Jack was not forcing the fight and was being picked off by Browne.
Score: 10-9 Browne Brown 88-82
Knowing he must be way behind on the scores it is understandable that Jack did not want to be pulled out of the fight as he would have lost on a technical decision but with a wound that bad it should have been stopped. This really was pointless now. Jack couldn’t score at distance and was not allowed to work inside and Browne was able to stand off and land straight punches through the guard of Jack.
Score: 10-9 Browne ` Browne 98-91
Jack’s face was covered in blood from his hairline to below his chin and he continued to standoff allowing Browne to score with punches from range. The referee stopped the action and again and Jack was passed as fit to continue by the doctor. Jack then began to pile forward throwing punches but it was already Browne’s round.
Score: Score 10-9 Browne Browne 108-100
The last round saw Browne continue to connect with jabs and lefts from distance and clinch on the inside. Jack tried to stage a strong finish but just could not find the target as Browne showboated to the bell.
Score: 10-9 Browne Browne 118-109
Official Scores: Cheek 117-110. DeLuca 116-111, Trella 119-108
Browne wins the vacant WBA interim title. He becomes the fourth member of the USA Team at the 2012 Olympics to win a version of a world title. He was the first Olympian to emerge from a gym which was funded by the Theodore Atlas Foundation which was set up by Teddy Atlas in memory of his father. The real WBA champion is Dmitry Bivol and that would be a good fight if it could be made but the WBA don’t have any rules on who the interim champion has to fight so he has plenty of options. Jack had relinquished the secondary WBA title in 2017 and then drew with Adonis Stevenson for the WBC title in June last year. The injury he suffered in this fight was horrendous and obvious had an effect on his performance but he was never really in the fight before that so would probably have lost anyway. It will be some time before that injury heals and he will be back.
Ruiz vs. Guevara
This was supposed to be a fight for the interim WBA title but when champion Jhack Tepora weighed-in at almost 6lbs over the limit that fight was cancelled and instead Ruiz faced very late substitute in Alberto Guevara. Ruiz almost made it an early night. In the opening round Guevara came forward landing a hard right and Ruiz countered him with a right and left hook that sent Guevara down. He was not badly hurt and so he beat the count and had no real problems in making it to the bell. Obviously as such a short notice substitute Guevara was not in top shape and wary of Ruiz’s power. He chose to try to outbox Ruiz on the outside but Ruiz had height and reach over Guevara plus the confidence of having trained hard for a twelve round fight. As the fight progressed Guevara spent more time trying to avoid trouble than trying to win the fight. Ruiz pressed but he was not really putting his punches together and although winning the rounds never came near to having Guevara in any trouble and had to settle for the wide unanimous decision. Scores 99-90 twice and 100-89 for Ruiz. He is a former WBC super bantamweight champion and interim WBA bantam title holder. After losing his interim WBA title to Julio Ceja and his WBC title to Hozumi Hasegawa Ruiz took two years out before returning with two wins late last year. He is No 10 with the WBA. Apart from being a last minute substitute this was also Guevara’s first fight for nine months. His other three losses have all been either in world title fights or against future champions. He lost to Leo Santa Cruz and Shinsuke Yamanaka in title fights and Emmanuel Rodriguez before the Puerto Rican won the IBF bantam title.
Kambosos vs. Perez
Australian prospect Kambosos outboxes experienced Filipino Perez for unanimous decision. From the outset Kambosos was too quick for Perez and found the target continually with long rights and hooks. Perez had brief success when he looked to have shaken Kambosos with a right in the second but Kambosos had already done enough to take the round. Perez switched stances and did a bit better but not enough to threaten the dominance of Kambosos. The Australian continued to connect with his rights and both inside and at distance his speed and accuracy saw him in control. Kambosos finished the fight with a flourish landing heavily from both hands and took every round. Scores 80-72 on the cards of the judges. Kambosos, 25, has been acting as Pacquiao’s sparring partner for quite a while and has useful wins over Brandon Ogilvie and JR Magboo. Perez came in on the back of impressive wins over Roberto Marroquin and Christian Gonzalez but was outclassed by Kambosos.
Steele vs. Inson
Pacquiao was the only Filipino to register a win on the card as Inson lost an upset split decision against unfancied Steele. Southpaw Inson hurt Steele with almost the first punches he threw in the fight but Steele stayed in the fight and just before the bell he put Inson over. It took Inson a couple of rounds to get into the fight after that early shock but then they engaged in an entertaining contest with both scoring heavily. Inson began to exert pressure in the fourth and fifth rounds feeling he had some catching up to do. Steele was the one pressing over the sixth and seventh but Inson staged a strong finish just coming up short. Scores 77-74 and 78-73 for Steele and 77-74 for Inson. Useful win for Texan Steele who was 1-2-1 in his last 4 fights. Philippines champion Inson’s only other loss was to unbeaten South African Thulani Mbenge and he had won his last five fights
Verona, NY, USA: Heavy: Oscar Rivas (26-0) W TKO 12 Bryant Jennings (24-3) . Feather: Shakur Stevenson (10-0) W TKO 4 Jessie Cris Rosales (22-2-1). Super Welter: Carlos Adames (16-0) W KO 3 Juan Ruiz (21-4,1ND). Super Feather: Jason Sosa (22-3-4) W PTS 10 Moises Delgadillo (17-19-2). Super Feather: Robinson Conceicao (11-0) W PTS 8 Hector Ambriz (12-9-2). Super Light: Fazliddin Gaibnazarov (7-0) W RTD 4 Ricardo Garcia (14-5-1). Middle: Vikas Krishan (1-0) W TKO 2 Steven Andrade (3-4).
Jennings vs. Rivas
Rivas scores late stoppage over Jennings to crash the heavyweight party. Jennings was not looking to trade punches with the hard punching Colombian and spent the first round circling the perimeter of the ring and stabbing out his jab. Rivas was tracking Jennings but was not quick enough to land any punches of note. Rivas had some success in the second round with left hooks to the body with Jennings continuing to box on the retreat and using his jab to score. The pattern was the same in the third and fourth . Rivas was loading up on every punch whereas Jennings was stabbing out his jab picking up points not looking for power but to break up the Colombian’s attacks. The pace picked up in the fifth with Rivas throwing a bunch of head punches. Jennings blocked most of them but Rivas connected with a hard body shot. Rivas did better in the sixth using his jab more and firing straight rights. Jennings continued to move and jab but his punches lacked any power. The first six rounds had been a tactical battle with few highlights with Jennings too smart to stand and trade and Rivas only firing in short bursts. More of the same in the seventh. Jennings boxed well scoring with his jab and landing a couple of long left hook as Rivas just padded after Jennings without managing to land anything of note. Jennings had a good eighth. Working off the jab he was standing his ground and firing combinations. By the end of the round he had Rivas on the retreat for the first time in the fight. Jennings had an even better ninth as he again stood his ground piercing the guard of Rivas with his jab and banging home accurate combinations. Rivas was more aggressive in the tenth. He chased down Jennings trapping him on the ropes and working to the body. The eleventh was an even round. Both fighters had some success Jennings with his jab and Rivas with a couple of heavy rights. Before the start of the twelfth round I felt Jennings had outlanded Rivas but two judges had Rivas in front, 106-103 and 105-104 and the other judge had Jennings leading 106-103. That became academic as Rivas burst into action shaking Jennings with a left hook and then driving him along the ropes under a barrage of punches. He kept pounding Jennings until Jennings fell sideways to the canvas. He made it his feet at eight but after the count Rivas forced Jennings to the ropes and was landing some heavy head punches and the referee stopped the fight. The 31-year-old Montreal-based Colombian was facing his first “name” opponent and as Jennings was No 2 with the WBO this is a huge win for Rivas the 18th by KO/TKO. He retains the NABF belt and lifts the NABO and IBF International titles held by Jennings. Jennings 34 had done a fine job of rebuilding after consecutive losses to Wlad Klitschko and Luis Ortiz in 2015 but it may be more difficult to rebound again.
Stevenson vs. Rosales
Another outstanding performance from Olympian Stevenson. He made a confident start boxing on the back foot probing with his right jab and firing flashing combinations. Filipino Rosales marched forward but found Stevenson an elusive target. Stevenson was on the back foot for much of the second with Rosales hunting in vain. Over the last minute Stevenson went on the offensive and was raking Rosales to head and body with lightning series of punches. The third was one-sided. Stevenson was forcing Rosales back connecting with strong combinations and crunching hooks to the body and Rosales had to soak up plenty of punishment. Stevenson ended it in the third scoring with two straight lefts which sent Rosales to the canvas on his back. He was up at eighth but after a close look at him the referee stopped the fight. Now six wins by KO/TKO for the 21-year-old Stevenson who improves with every fight. He has great poise and real power –a star in the making. Rosales tried hard here but was outclassed. His only other loss was a third round kayo against Jhonny Gonzalez.
Adames vs. Ruiz
Power puncher Adames ends this one with a body punch in the third. Two slow opening rounds saw both fighters really just probing with their punches with neither landing anything heavy. Adames switched to southpaw in the third and was whipping straight lefts through Ruiz’s defence. He backed Ruiz to a corner and a vicious right hook to the body saw Ruiz drop to one knee in agony and he was counted out. The 24-year-old Adames now has 13 wins by KO/TKO. The Dominican prospect is already No 4 with the WBA after wins over Juan Carlos Prada (31-2-1), former IBF super welter champion Carlos Molina and Alejandro Barrera (29-4). Mexican-based Venezuelan Ruiz has now lost 4 of his last 5 fights but all of the losses have been against unbeaten opposition.
Sosa vs. Delgadillo
It looked in the first round as though Sosa might get this one over early as he scored with thumping left hooks to the body of Delgadillo but a stiff jab sent Sosa stumbling back and almost down. In the second they were going toe-to-toe with both landing heavily and Sosa was cut on the bridge of his nose. Delgadillo rounded off a combination with a left hook that sent Sosa spinning away on wobbly legs and his gloves touched the canvas as he tried to keep his balance. It counted as a knockdown and the referee gave Sosa a count with the bell sounding as the count was completed. Neither fighter wanted to take a backward step so the action was close in and brutal and even this early both had suffered facial damage as though they had gone ten rounds. Sosa began to outwork Delgadillo in the exchanges and used a focused body attack to slow Delgadillo but both were shipping lots of punishment in a gruelling scrap which was all about offence and not defence. In the seventh a right cross from Sosa had Delgadillo badly hurt and he retreated to the ropes and went down on his knees. As the count reached eight it looked as though he was not going to get up and Sosa lifted his arms in triumph. Delgadillo was not finished and he did make it to a vertical position at nine. Sosa tried to finish it and pounded Delgadillo with punches but Delgadillo survived. They continued to knock lumps off each other over the closing rounds with Sosa the stronger but Delgadillo making him fight hard all the way to the final bell. Scores 97-91 twice and 96-92 for Sosa. The former holder of the secondary WBA title at super feather won’t want too many fights like this. He had a tough 2017 losing to Vasily Lomachenko for the WBO title and dropping a questionable majority verdict to Yuriorkis Gamboa. He started to rebuild with a win in August last year but this way a too tough outing. Delgadillo was 2-6 in his last 8 fights but the losses had all been on points in fights he was expected to lose.
Conceicao vs. Ambriz
Brazilian Conceicao gets another points wins, his fifth in his last six fights, as he outclasses Mexican Ambriz. Scores 80-72 for Conceicao on all three cards. The 30-year-old Rio gold medal winner had great success as an Elite level amateur scoring wins over Oscar Valdez, Claudio Marrero and Vasiliy Lomachenko-briefly-as his 20-19 win over Lomachenko at the 2011 World Amateur Championships was overturned after a protest and changed to a 19-18 win for Lomachenko. He is being brought along slowly by Top Rank. Now five losses and a draw in his last six fights for Ambriz.
Gaibnazarov vs. Garcia
Gaibnazarov gets a win but without really impressing as Garcia retires after the fourth round. Gaibnazarov was finding the target in the first with his southpaw straight lefts with Garcia really just trying to stay out of trouble and throwing few punches. Garcia was more aggressive in the second. He was coming forward letting his punches go. He was not very accurate and there was no power there. Gaibnazarov’s right jab was bruising up the left side of Garcia’s face. Gaibnazarov landed a right to the head early in the second that sent Garcia down sprawling on his knees but it did not look a heavy knockdown. Garcia beat the count and saw out the round by clinching and moving. Gaibnazarov chased Garcia in vain in the fourth without really being able to land any telling punches so it was a surprise when Garcia retired in his corner. Uzbek Gaibnazarov, a gold medal winner in Rio, now has four wins by KO/TKO. He is small for his division with a short reach and has yet to really settle as a pro. Dominican Garcia is 0-4-1 in his last 5 fights but two of those losses and the draw were majority decisions.
Krishan vs. Andrade
Top Ranks looks to be aiming to break into the Indian market in a big way. They recently signed Vijender Singh and here they launched the pro career of another top Indian boxer in Krishan who blew away Andrade within two rounds. The Indian southpaw looked quick and powerful. Andrade-no relation to Demetrius-was throwing lots of rights in the opener obviously having been told that was the way to beat a southpaw. Unfortunately he was telegraphing them and they lacked power. Krishan was finding the target with his left with lots more power and drove Andrade around the ring until the bell. Krishan ended the fight in the second landing some vicious left hooks to the body that dropped Andrade. He made it to his feet but Krishan piled on the punches until the referee waived the fight off. The 26-year-old “Indian Tank” had been talking about the 2020 Olympics but decided to turn pro instead. In the amateurs in 2010 he won a gold medal at the Asian Youth Championships and the Asian Games and a bronze medal at the World Youth Championships. He lifted a bronze medal at the 2011 World Championships but did not medal at the 2012 Olympics. In London he was awarded the a 13-11 decision over Errol Spence but that was overturned on appeal due to infractions of the rules by Krishan with Spence declared the 15-13 victor. His team protested the changed decision and took their protest all the way to the Court of Arbitration for Sport but their appeal failed. He did not medal at the 2016 Olympics but won another gold medal last year at the Commonwealth Games. A university graduate and a policeman his career will be avidly followed in India. Andrade has lost his last four fights all against unbeaten opponents.
Bangkok, Thailand: Super Welter: Teerachai (40-1) W PTS 12 Meshak Mwankemwa (17-6-2).
Easy night for Teerachai against an unschooled Mwankemwa. He was able to score with jabs and straight rights jerking back the Tanzanian’s head time after time. Mwankemwa had no power and poor footwork but he had plenty of guts. He soaked up the punishment and kept trying to punch back. A big right from Teerachai in the ninth saw Mwankemwa’s legs go in different directions and he pitched down to the floor. He beat the count and saw out the round. As Teerachai increased the pressure Mwankemwa twice lost his mouthpiece and when he deliberately spit it out in the last he was deducted a point. It is to his credit that despite taking a pounding for twelve rounds he was still there at the bell. Scores 120-106 twice and 118-108 for Teerachai. Second win for Teerachai since his kayo loss to Lucas Matthysse for the secondary WBA title in January last year. “Smart Boy” Mwankemwa has now lost 4 of his last 5 fights with the other three losses coming in Russia, Namibia and Hungary as an imported to lose boxer.
Brampton, Canada: Light: Josh O’Reilly (14-0) W PTS 10 Cam O’Connell (17-3-1). O’Reilly takes a big step up as he captures majority verdict over fellow-Canadian O’Connell to win the vacant NABA title. Scores 98-92 and 96-94 for O’Reilly and 95-95. The 98-92 looked way out for such a close fight. The 28-year-old O’Reilly is hoping the NABA title will get him a slot in the WBA top 15. Another setback for O’Connell after losses to Tony Luis and Mathieu Germain.
Struer, Denmark: Feather: Jesus Sanchez (10-1) W TKO 5 Dennis Ceylan (19-3-2) . Middle: Abdul Khattab (16-2-1) W PTS 8 Oliver Flodin (4-1). Heavy: Kem Ljungquist (7-0) W TKO 1 Boldizsar Czagler (2-1). Super Middle: Mateo Veron (28-21-3,2ND) W PTS 8 Lolenga Mock (42-16-1). Heavy: Albon Pervizaj (12-0) W TKO 1 Alain Banongo (3-1).Super Welter: Mikkel Nielsen (7-0) W PTS 6 Angel Emilov (9-25).
Ceylan vs. Sanchez
This turned out to be Ceylan’s last fight as he announced his retirement after being bludgeoned to defeat for the second time by the strong but crude Spaniard in a fight for the vacant European Union title. Sanchez started this fight at a Usain Bolt-level pace. He came out firing punches trying to blow Ceylan away. He rocked Ceylan early but by the end of the round Ceylan was countering well. The second brought back memories of the crushing defeat Ceylan suffered in their first fight. He was being caught by long swinging punches and looked very shaky. Ceylan boxed his way through the third and fourth connecting with some crisp head punches but he looked vulnerable every time Sanchez let fly with his looping punches. In the fifth Sanchez launched a wild attack forcing Ceylan to the ropes and pounding away with both hands. Ceylan ducked so low his gloves almost brushed the canvas and when he straightened up he tottered along the ropes and went down. He struggled to get to his feet almost falling again and although he did beat the count the referee took a hard look at him and then waived the fight over. Ceylan protested but it was a good stoppage. Spanish champion Sanchez gets his ninth win in a row but only his third win by KO/TKO. Now he will be looking to challenge fellow Spaniard Kiko Martinez for the European title. A year ago Ceylan was European champion was unbeaten with a world title fight a possibility. A disastrous 2018 saw him crushed in ten rounds by Josh Warrington and then knocked out in two rounds by Sanchez and now he has decided to retire.
Khattab vs. Flodin
This was always going to be a tough ask for Swede Flodin against the more skilled Khattab who had the added advantage of Mikkel Kessler working in his corner. The young Palestinian-born Khattab made his usual bright start. He boxed on the outside using quick and accurate jabs and strong rights to stop the aggressive attacks of Flodin. He had built a useful lead by the end of the fifth but the fight was entering a critical stage as Khattab had previously faded badly over the late rounds in other fights. Flodin pressed hard and started eating into Khattab’s lead but Khattab had paced this fight better than some of the others and he fought hard over the last three rounds and did enough to hold on to his advantage. Scores 77-75 twice and 79-73 all for Khattab. After suffering an inside the distance loss to Armenian Torosyan in early 2017 Khattab put on a class display in drawing with Ronny Mittag later in the year. He was inactive throughout 2018 so this was his first fight for almost 15 months. Swedish “Wise Guy” Flodin, 22, was moving up to eight rounds for the first time and the experience will have been good for him even if the result was not. He is a former Nordic Youth champion and Swedish Senior champion and represented Sweden at both the World and European Youth Championships but lost out at the European and World Qualifiers for Rio and turned pro.
Ljungquist vs. Czagler
Poor match as Danish heavyweight hope Ljungquist beats late substitute Czagler inside a round. The 6’6 ½” southpaw towered over the overweight Czagler whose only tactics were to plough forward head down swinging. Ljungquist dropped him with an uppercut and although Czagler beat the count as he bulled forward again he was caught with a left hook and went down with the referee immediately waiving off the fight. The 28-year-old Dane gets his fifth win by KO/TKO. In the amateurs he was Danish champion and fought in the WSB in the 2016/2017 series. He lost to Joe Joyce at the 2016 European Olympics qualifier and then failed to make it through the World qualifier. Hungarian Czagler had no hope here.
Veron vs. Mock
This result brought about the second retirement announcement as Mock decided to retire again after this loss. Veron used stick-and-move tactics slipping in a couple of punches and then slipping away before Mock could catch him. Mock pressed hard as he always does but at 46 he is not as quick as he was. He is still strong and although Veron presented a difficult target the DRC-born Dane did manage to land some hefty hits and did better late as Veron began to slow but the Argentinian kept moving and slotting home punches and was a deserving winner. Scores 78-74 for Veron on the three cards. The 29-year-old Veron, a former Argentinian super welter champion had lost 3 of his last 4 fights and was 0-7 in fights outside of Argentina so this did not look a tough test for Mock who was 11-1 in his last 12 fights losing a close decision to Turk Avni Yildirim for the WBC International title in his last fight in September. He has faced top level, opponents such as David Haye (who he had on the floor before losing), Lucien Bute, Gabriel Campillo and Erik Skoglund and was a good European Union champion.
Pervizaj vs. Banongo
This one was a waste of ring time. Pervizaj just beat on the vastly overweight Banongo banging away at the almost static Czech who only prodded out the occasional jab. Pervizaj took Banongo to the ropes and unleashed a series of punches that saw Banongo drop to his hands and knees. He stumbled to his feet at eight and the referee stopped the fight. This is the fifth first round win for the 23-year-old German of Albanian parentage. He was German Youth and Senior champion. He turned pro when the German Board allotted the Rio Olympics spot to a professional who was taking advantage of being able to fight at the Olympics so Pervizaj did not even have a chance to qualify. Banongo just a novice and way out of his depth.
Nielsen vs. Emilov
Nielsen gets six rounds of useful work against Bulgarian Emilov. Nielsen won every round but Emilov came to fight and refused to fold under pressure. Nielsen picked up the pace over the second half of the fight but Emilov refused to fold and lasted the distance. Scores 60-54 for Nielsen on all three cards. Nielsen, 29, was Danish amateur champion in 2013,2014 and 2015 but failed to get through the European qualifier for the Rio Olympics and turned pro. Emilov has only failed to go the distance twice in his 25 losses.
Tokyo, Japan: Super Bantam: Shingo Wake (26-5-2) W TKO 6 Takafumi Nakajima (29-12-1). Wake waits a long time to revenge a loss to Nakajima but does it in style. It was a tough, close fight with Nakajima the aggressor but with Wake boxing cleverly and countering. From the third round the accuracy of Wake’s southpaw lefts put him on top but Nakajima tried to hustle Wake and turn the fight his way. As he bustled forward in the sixth Wake landed a peach of a left uppercut that put Nakajima down flat on his back. Nakajima managed to beat the count but was badly shaken and Wake hammered home punch after punch until Nakajima collapsed into the ropes and then to the canvas with the referee immediately stopping the fight. Wake had lost to Nakajima back in 2012 then ran off ten wins to land a fight with Jonathan Guzman for the vacant IBF super bantam title in 2016. He lost that one but is on a run of six inside the distance wins and is No 4 with the IBF but with the first two spots vacant he is effectively the second guy in the ratings. Now three losses in a row for Nakajima.
Seoul, South Korea: Super Welter: Jung Kyoung Lee (7-2-1) W KO 7 Samuel Colomban (25-11-1). Lee wins the vacant OPBF title with kayo of experienced Colomban. Lee established an early lead but Colomban was always dangerous with heavy counters. This was Colomban’s fist fight for sixteen months and that began to tell. Lee broke through in the seventh with a heavy combination that sent Colomban down and he was unable to beat the count. Third win by KO/TKO for Lee who competed in MMA fights before changing over to boxing in 2017. Boxing has been at a very low ebb in South Korean for many years and the hope is that Lee can spark a revival. Colomban was born in Cameroon but settled in Australia after competing at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne in 2006. He won the Australian super welter title in his last fight in September 2017 after four time losing in fights for the welterweight title. Reports from Australia indicated he suffered a shoulder injury in this fight.
Fight of the week (Significance): Manny Pacquiao vs. Adrien Broner. Not a great fight but there will be a queue to face the Filipino marvel
Fight of the week (Entertainment): Jason Sosa and Moises Delgadillo knocked lumps off each other for ten brutal rounds. Honourable mention to Nordine Oubaali vs. Rau’shee Warren which by contrast was a fast-paced contest of skills
Fighter of the week: Has to be Pacquiao but Oubaali deserves a mention and does Pablo Cano
Punch of the week: The first left from Shakur Stevenson which put Jessie Cris Rosales down was special as was the left uppercut from Shingo Wake that floored Takafumi Nakajima it was a thing of beauty.
Upset of the week: Has to be Pablo Cano demolishing Jorge Linares inside a round.
Prospect watch: He has excellent amateur credentials and it would be good to think that Indian Vikas Krishan might turn out to be a star as that is a huge largely untapped market for boxing.