By Per-Ake Persson
TK Promotions stages rousing fight show in Ringkoping, Denmark
STORY BY PER-AKE PERSSON
February 29 – Ringkoping, Denmark. TK Promotions got off to a good start with a solid pro-am shown at an almost packed Rofi Center in this small town on the Danish west coast. Danish middleweight Landry Kore (11-0-1) headlined in an eight-rounder against a rugged opponent in Frenchman Idaas Redjdal (10-2-2).
After a quiet first round, Redjdal began to come on with blistering punches at Kore, who kept stalking his opponent, but looked too slow, becoming an easy target for the Frenchman’s spirited two-fisted attack.
Things got worse for Kore in Round 3 when Redjdal found a home for his right uppercut that shook up Landry, who then hit the canvas when another right blasted off his chin. Kore appeared to be clear-eyed as he got up, however, it was soon apparent that he was in deep trouble as Redjdal’s right fist kept bashing off his skull. Kore desperately tried to hold through the rain of blows that came his way. Redjdal then walloped his adversary with a crunching right hand that sent Kore down again! Idaas poured it on in the final ten seconds, but the Dane luckily was saved by the bell.
Kore came out for the fourth well recovered and while Redjdal boxed sharply, by the end of the frame the Frenchman was showing signs of fatigue and it looked as if he had punched himself out trying for the big knockout win.
Round five saw Kore hurt his weary opponent with a ripping uppercut and Redjdal retreated into his own corner as Landry gave it all he had. The Dane is not known for neither punch nor speed, but here he landed one helluva a left hook to the jaw, sending Redjdal down and out as the contest was stopped at 1:12 without a count. It took a few minutes before Redjdal was up and standing. It was a sensational ending for a thrilling bout.
Welterweight Oliver Mollenberg (5-0-1) eased back into action with a TKO victory 1:51 into the first round against German Sandro Luetke Bordewick (7-15-1). Bordewick was floored twice by body punches and the towel came flying into the ring to rescue him after the second knockdown in a clear mismatch.
Another welterweight contest saw Mikkel Nielsen (9-2) winning a close, split-decision over Frenchman Bernard Follea (7-10-2) in a hard-fought six-rounder. The judges had it 58-56 both ways and an out of line 60-54 for Nielsen. It was a tough fight all the way with both having their moments on the inside. Follea’s hard right hook kept landing while Nielsen was busier. I had them even at 57-57.
Featherweight Payman Akbari turned pro with a too easy first- round knockout over German Sergej Vib (a dubious 11-12). Vib went down after a hook to the body, got up, but sat down again and was counted out at 2:04.
In the show opener, featherweights Dane Michael Nielsen (3-0) and Paris Stavropoulos (2-1), of Greece, clashed in a six-rounder won by Nielsen by scores of 58-56 on all cards. Stavropoulos came in at the lightweight limit, although he had to shed some weight before being allowed to fight, which he did. The Greek still look bigger and stronger than his opponent – and it showed as he dominated the action in the first two. After that, however, Stavropoulos began to dance around and showboat a bit and Nielsen got back into it, even though it still looked like a hometown decision.
BK East Boxing Club hosts action-packed fight card in Sweden
February 22 – Katrineholm, Sweden. The newly created BK East Boxing Club – about a year old – got a good pro-am show off the ground at a packed dance hall called Safiren. The show was topped by Samo Jangirov (5-2-1) defending the Swedish cruiserweight title against Marcus Alberts (6-6-1). This was a rematch. Jangirov won their first fight on a close, but fair decision after a six-round brawl. Although the rematch was made over eight, it wound up with the same result. Both improved on the mistakes made in the first contest, which meant that the taller, bigger Alberts boxed from the outside, while the chunkier and shorter Jangirov lowered his head as he stalked his opponent.Alberts moved well, but as it was he took too long to find the range with his jab and Jangirov forced the action and threw heavy hooks from both hands. A savage fusilade by Jangirov shook Alberts in the fifth. Late in the round the tide turned, though, as Jangirov misunderstood the signal from the timekeeper that there was ten seconds left and dropped his hands and walked towards his corner. Alberts then jumped on him right away and landed with a crackling right hand.
In the sixth, Alberts kept scoring with 1-2 combinations and the champion was cut over the left eye. It was more of the same in the seventh, but in the final round Jangirov got it together for a strong finish in an exciting fight.
The scoring was 77-75 and 78-75 for Jangirov, and an out of line 78-75 for Alberts.
A third fight could well be in the cards, although the winner must also fight David Loy (10-1), who was at ringside. Loy should have been on the bill as well, but was forced to pull out due to a back injury.
When Daniel Brodin pulled out, Fight Life Promotions had a sub in Greek super welterweight Panagiotis Matsagkos (6-3) and he was in against Czech super lightweight Lukas Dekys (2-0) in a fight scheduled for six two-minute rounds. Dekys was smaller, but much faster and kept moving and landing with swift, light combinations while Matsagkos kept loading up and waited for too long. Matsagkos can punch a bit, but his foe kept him tied him up on the inside and there were lots of wrestling and few effective punches. Dekys won on scores of 59-56 twice and 58-56 but this one could well have been scored a draw.
In third and last professional fight of the evening, middleweight Salah Nazer Taha (3-0) outscored Aliaksei Vaureniuk (1-3) over four. Taha made a slow start, but took over the fight from the second and won on scores of 40-36 twice and 39-37.
For boxing nerds it might be worth knowing that Ulf Karlsson, who was Sugar Ray Leonard´s first opponent in the 1976 Olympics, hailed from Katrineholm, a small town but always with good fighters.
Dominic Boesel bludgeons Sven Fornling to capture the IBO and WBA Interim light heavyweight laurels
November 16 – Saale, Germany. Light heavyweight Dominic Boesel (30-1, 12 KOs) stopped Sven Fornling (15-2, 7 KO’s) in the eleventh round to win the IBO and vacant WBA Interim light heavyweight titles. Boesel, who is from this region in Germany from nearby Freyburg, had about 3,500 fans cheering him on at the Messehalle on this SES promotion and lived up to expectations as he took apart the champion Fornling, of Malmo, Sweden. Boesel established his jab already in the first round and Fornling just did not seem to get his face out of the way. Late in the second, Boesel floored Fornling, but it was more of an off-balance thing than a genuine knockdown.
Fornling, 30, worked hard, in fact very hard, but was seldom able to connect cleanly as Boesel covered up well and pulled ahead on points. Sven won some rounds on sheer work rate, though he could never really get through and ended up wasting a lot of energy punching at Boesel’s high gloved guard. The sharper, cleaner punches always came from the challenger, who read his opponent well and kept landing with right-left combinations and his ever present jab. It was basic boxing, though well executed.
In the tenth, Fornling, sensing he was behind, launched a savage, two-fisted attack, but then he walked into a counter right that really stunned him and he never recovered. For the first time in the contest he retreated, although Boesel, 30, was cautious and kept boxing.
In the eleventh, the end came as the German landed with a barrage of punches and as the Swede tried to hold on he was pushed away and he went down. Referee Jean Robert Laine, from Monaco, ruled a no-knockdown and warned Boesel to stop pushing while the Swedish boxer got to his feet looking unsteady. Boesel was careful, but then he sensed his opponent had nothing left and opened up and the champion stumbled backwards badly hurt and went down in his own corner as Laine stepped in and stopped the fight.
After ten it was scored 96-93 and 97-92 (twice) all for Boesel. Fornling left the ring before the announcement of the winner and looked very shaky. He was promptly taken to hospital for a check-up and there was apparently some kind of bleeding in the brain.
The next morning, Swedish public service TV got a hold of Fornling, who picked up the phone and told a reporter that he should not be talking as he had what the boxer described as “bleeding in the head” – and this quickly made big headlines in Swedish media.
However, a bit later Fornling’s manager Christoffer Cederblad told the media that there was no bleeding on the brain and that Sven would remain in intensive care for at least another day, but that his tests seemed to be okay.
When it comes to his future in boxing – it is still an open question. Fornling’s promoter, Erol Ceylan, hinted that retirement would be best for the Swede, who has a physically demanding style of boxing and tends to take too much punishment.
This means that every fight is tough for him and the battle against Boesel was very brutal for Fornling, who looked totally spent at the end of the contest. He had quite simply given all he had and came up second best.
When Fornling won the IBO title by beating Karo Murat on December 15 of last year, the win itself was perfectly alright, but Murat fought with one arm for most of the fight after injuring his left shoulder – and that paved the way for Fornling’s win after another very demanding fight that saw the Swede close to being stopped in the final round.
As for Boesel, it is up and away and at least one mega fight awaits. He is a good, well-schooled boxer, but is not in the league of likes of Beterbiev or Alvarez.
The undercard was filled with fighters retiring and in the co-feature Peruvian David Zegarra (34-4) surrendered after five completed rounds due to a claimed hand injury and German super middleweight Stefan Haertel (19-1, with just three early endings) won the vacant WBO I/C title. Haertel is an excellent boxer and did a number on Zegarra, who is pretty good himself, but is clearly too small to compete at 168. Stefan won every round and was heading for a clear win when Zegarra decided he had had enough. It was scheduled for 12.
Heavyweight prospect Peter Kadiru (6-0) took some time to warm up against Venezuelan Pedro Martinez (11-3), but once he did it became pretty one-sided and after a tough fourth round Martinez retired, but his corner failed to inform the referee until the bell rang for the fifth, so it entered the record books as a stoppage 3 seconds into round 5 of this scheduled six-rounder. Kadiru is managed by Bernd Boente, who was once partners with the Klitschko brothers in their fighting days.
Moroccan super welterweight Mohammed Rabii (10-0) outscored Mexican Jesus Gurrola (27-14-3) over eight frames. Gurola showed a decent left hook, but threw too few of them as Rabii had to be careful in order not to get caught. This made for a tactical fight with few punches, and in the third the referee told both men to pick it up. Rabii proceeded to throw punches, while Gurrola was hesitant and kept moving along the ropes waiting for a moment that never came. It was scored 79-73, 78-74 and 79-74.
Light heavyweight Tom Dzemski (14-0) had no problems with Hungarian Zoltan Sera (32-21-1), who retired for no reason at all it seemed. He did come out for the fourth, but then the towel came in and the official time was 0:07. Dzemski is the son of former NBA champ and SES trainer Dirk Dzemski.
Cruiserweight Roman Fress (9-0) looked sharp as he took apart out of shape Czech veteran David Vicena (12-26-2) and halted him 1:27 into the first of a scheduled six-rounder. Vicena stopped almost every punch coming his way with his head and body and was floored twice before it was stopped. Fress is trained by former WBO super middleweight champ Robert Stieglitz.
Heavyweight Erik Pfeifer (7-0) won the WBO European title in the show opener as he stopped 42-year old Bosnian Adnan Redzovic (21-4). Pfeifer was well on top and heading for what looked like an easy win when in the third round he got nailed by a right hand and went down. He was hurt, but got up and had Redzovic been in better shape it could have been a different story, but as it was the EC Boxing promoted German recovered and took command again. Redzovic tired and Pfeifer poured it on and the Bosnian corner called in the referee and pointed out that their man had injured his hand and was unable to continue. Redzovic did not come for the sixth in this ten-rounder.
Pfeifer was an excellent amateur, but at 32 may have left it a bit late to make it in the pros.
Q Boxing Promotion provides an exciting fight show at Gilleleje Hallen in Denmark featuring a rising star and two former world champs
October 5 – Gilleleje, Denmark. Q Boxing Promotion staged its second official (and fourth altogether) show in this small coastal town on the north of Zealand with 18-year-old super lightweight and local hero Oliver Mollenberg, 4-0-1, headlining in a ten-rounder against French Moroccan Jaouad “Le Bombardier Marocain” Belmehdi (7-0-3) with the vacant WBO Youth title at stake. The two produced an excellent fight, but it was also obvious that it was too much too soon for Mollenberg, who had never gone past four rounds.The Dane started fast as he moved well, demonstrated good hand speed and swiftly glided around the ring. In the third round, however, Belmedhi found a home for his left hook and Mollenberg showed an increasingly leaky defense in what developed into a war of attrition. Belhmedi took some big punches, but never seemed hurt and Oliver was forced to fight off the ropes and Belmehdi, in an awkward style, seemed to get stronger and stronger.
Mollenberg showed a big heart and great fighting spirit, but he was tiring and took a beating in the tenth. The judges had it an out of line 97-93 for Mollenberg and 95-95 twice for the majority draw. The USA Boxing News had it 96-94 for Belmehdi. Why Mollenberg was in so tough so soon is a good question. With more experience he could have outboxed Belmehdi, instead of ending up in a fight that he should not have too many of, though, it was exciting to watch.
Former WBA middleweight challenger Patrick Nielsen, 30-3, had his first boxing match in a year and a half year and he made hard work of outscoring tough, but limited Frenchman Armen Ypremyan (9-2-2) in a messy eight-rounder made at super middleweight that featured more wrestling than boxing. The judges apparently scored points for Nielsen’s wrestling ability, as well, because he won on scores of 79-73 twice and 80-72, but to this reporter this one could well have ended up in a draw.
Heads clashed often and Nielsen, a southpaw, was cut twice over his right eye and bled from the nose, while Ypremyan had a bad swelling around his left eye and his cornerman had only a water bottle and a towel to treat his fighter with. Nielsen´s last fight was in MMA where he lost a lucrative contest against compatriot Mark O Madsen early in the very first round and his timing seemed way off and he could not keep his stocky opponent away. Ypremyan, on the other hand, is not much of a boxer, but was strong and relentless with his mauling offense.
Former world champ Kassim Ouma, 29-13-1, stepped in for Kim Poulsen and fought in his gym shoes and in the early part of his ten-rounder against another faded veteran in Ashley Theopane, 47-8-1, he looked as if he did not care as he slowly stalked his opponent. Theopane in his turn fought a tactical safety first contest and built up an early lead.
After the fifth round, Ouma upped the pace a bit and Theopane retreated more and more, but got under pressure and in the ninth the crowd was enjoying an interesting fight, when suddenly the lights in the arena went out and there was a long timeout. Once the action resumed, Theopane took it easy, retreated even more with Ouma chasing him. It was scored 100-91, 98-92 and 99-91 – all for Theopane, but it looked closer than that in a slow paced fight between two guys who perhaps should consider another line of work.
Norwegian super lightweight Jamshid Nazari, 6-0, had an off night against tough Hungarian veteran Oszkar Fiko, 32-28-1, and looked lucky to get a majority decision in their six-rounder. It was scored 58-54, 57-55 and 56-56 with Fiko having points deducted in both the fourth and fifth for his careless use of his head. Nazari was just as guilty, though, in pulling down Fiko’s head in a messy fight where most of the effective punching came from the Hungarian.
Middleweight Jacob Porsgaard, 3-0, outscored Georgian Niko Gvajava, 6-18-2, in a four rounder. Gvajava can brawl a bit and wants to as well, but is too small at middleweight and Porsgaard won on scores of 40-36 twice and 39-37.
Light heavyweight Oliver Zaren, 2-0, opened the show by stopping Hungarian Attila Orsos, 14-26-1, who later in the show did a good job as cornerman for Oszkar Fiko, but as a fighter he was out of shape and went down twice in the first and again early in the second and it was stopped at 1:03 of Round 2.
Q Boxing are back on November 1 in Herlev.
Hadi Haman Promotions present rollicking fight card in Malmoe Sweden
Story by Per-Ake Persson
August 31 – Malmoe, Sweden. Danish Hadi Hamane Promotion staged their second show and the first in Sweden on this hot Saturday night in an even hotter Rosengards Sporthall, well known and ill reputed (exaggerated it must be said) part of town. There were lots of organizational problems for HHP and the show was close to being canceled a few times not to mention that the ring lights – no joke – crashed down in the ring minutes before the show was about to begin! The ring was empty at the time – had the fighters and the referee been there it could have been a serious accident. As it was the lights were removed, a vacuum cleaner was assembled and the ring was cleaned and finally the show got off the ground.
Super welterweight and local man Simon Henriksson (7-3, 1 KO) headlined and a got a decent opponent in Hungarian Richard Baba (4-6, 3 KO’s). Henriksson landed heavy hooks to the body, but was stunned in the second by Baba. The Hungarian was unable to handle Henricksson’s drilling shots to the body and faded over the course of the contest. It was scored for Henricksson 40-36 from the three judges. This fight should of course have been a six-rounder, but the Swedish legislation around martial arts is pretty strict and for fights over 12 minutes duration one must apply 60 days in advance and HHP failed in that.
Super featherweight Mohamed Abdulrahim (2-0) took apart the small and rather inept Latvian Wladislavs Davidaitis (4-14) and had his opponent on the floor in the second and twice in the third. It should have been stopped then and there, but was for reasons unknown allowed to continue. Davidiatis, miraculously was able to last the distance for a loss on scores of 40-33 on all cards.
Super lightweight Johannes Berhane (2-0) looked good as he stopped Sandis Zarins (1-1) 48 seconds into the second. Zarins was down late in the first from a southpaw left and was floored again early in the second this time from a right hook. It could well have been stopped after the first knockdown.
Light heavyweight Denis Kaufer made his professional debut and impressed with sharp hooks to the body against a soft looking Pavel Albrecht (2-2). Albrecht was floored twice in the first and again in the second for a stoppage at 2:18.
Welterweight Yaffet Amaniel (5-2) outscored Romans Sapolnikovs (0-1-1) over four, but was stunned early in the first by his green and inexperienced opponent. Sapolnikovs punched himself out and was down late in the first and looked dead tired for the rest of the fight. It was scored 40-35 for Amaniel on all cards.
Next HHP show? Well, let´s get back to that at a later date.
Q Boxing hosts free exciting fight card under the big top tent in Aabrenraa, Denmark
July 4 – Aabenraa, Denmark. Q Boxing Promotion staged their inaugural show in a big circus tent on the outskirts of this Danish Town with free entrance for the crowd (all tickets were bought by a local sponsor and given away for free) with the event televised through Q’s own PPV platform – all a heavy investment with payoff maybe coming in a few years – or not.
Headlining the bill was welterweight Mikkel Nielsen (8-1), who was moved into headline status for the first time and it was clear all along that he was in a tough match against tall Mexican Jose Luis Rodriguez “El Puma” Guerrero (10-2-2).
Guerrero, 21, grabbed an early lead using his reach and good jab and worked the body with solid hooks. Many of those shots, however, strayed low and Guerrero was ticked off by the referee. Nielsen, 30, was cut in the second and the bleeding just got worse as the fight continued. Guerrero, of Irapuato, Guanajuato, MX, was later cut around both eyes, but these injuries were better treated and never played a part in the fight that was very tough and demanding on both combatants.
Nielsen, of Odense, Denmark, upped the pace and slugged it out and showed excellent conditioning and a big heart, although he could never really get to Guerrero.
In the seventh, the Mexican had a point deducted for the low blows and the fight developed into a savage slugfest. Both were tiring and gave their all, but the better quality shots came from Guerrero. Nielsen won the last round in what was now a war and the grueling pace had apparently taken its toll on Guerrero, who was under intense pressure. Guerrero managed to last the distance and won on scores of 95-94 on all cards. At stake was the GBU Intercontinental title, but not many cared. Regardless, it was a great fight.
In the co-feature, Dutch female flyweight Alicia Holzken (5-0) won the vacant GBU and WIBF titles with what looked like a close decision over Romanian Xenia Jorneac (10-4), but the judges saw it 99-91 twice and 98-92.
Middleweight Abdul Khattab (18-2-1) outscored faded Polish veteran Rafal Jackiewicz (50-24-2) over eight. Khattab, with former WBA and WBC champ Mikkel Kessler as his head coach, worked behind his jab against Jackiewicz, once EBU ruler. The veteran Jackiewicz just waited for his opponent, protected himself well, but was content to counterpunch and last the distance and in the process he picked up another good payday. It was scored 80-72 on all cards.
Super lightweight Oliver Mollenberg (4-0) won on a blistering TKO 55 seconds into the fourth when Georgian Giorgi Gviniashvili (6-15-1) was forced to retire with a dislocated shoulder. Mollenberg had been dominating the fight all the way.
Hungarian flyweight Jozsef Ajtai (22-15) stepped up to featherweight and was blown out by the comebacking Ali Mohammed (6-0). Blown out it was because Ajtai was certainly not hit during the short time the fight lasted and it was stopped after two knockdowns 2:08 into the first.
Norweigian, of Afghan descent, Jamshid Nazari (5-0) outpointed noted spoiler Kakha Avetisian (25-54-1) over six. It was scored 60-54 twice and 60-53 in a no knockdown affair.
Lightweight Mahdi Jallaw (2-1) opened the show and knocked out inept and underweight Georgian Malkhaz Tatrishvili (4-13) 2:23 into the first.
Q Boxing Promotion will be back with their next show scheduled for Gilleleje in October, but with this promotion the sudden Danish summer boxing boom is over.
A knockout Danish Boxing Weekend!
Dina Thorslund (14-0) retained the female WBO super bantamweight title in style as she outscored tough, but outclassed Australian challenger April Adams (11-2-1). After ten it was scored 100-90 on all cards. Thorslund controlled the action throughout and had her opponent reeling in the fourth, fifth and in the dying seconds of the tenth. Throughout the bout, the challenger was hurt by drilling body shots. In Round 10, a left hook to the head jolted Adams and she was ready to go, but Thorslund stepped back and a big smile grew on her face and she allowed Adams to last the distance.In the chief support of this Team Sauerland show heavyweight Kem Ljungquist (9-0) outscored reigning Spanish champion Gabriel Enguema (10-9) in an eight-rounder that failed to take off. Enguema has skills, although he seldom shows any real fire, while Ljungquist, a southpaw, worked on the outside and built up a close lead. Whenever he got close he got into trouble, so he avoided that. It was scored 79-73 twice and 78-74, but looked closer than that. Norwegian cruiser “King” Kai Robin Havnaa (15-0) stopped Georgian Levan Lukhutashvlii (7-4) 1:12 into the third of a scheduled ten-rounder.
Lukhutashvili threw dangerous hooks from both hands and appeared to win the first two rounds. In the third, Havnaa opened up and soon had the Georgian under pressure, but then Lukhutashvili began to talk and make protests apparently about a low blow while Havnaa bombed away. A left hook to the body made Lukhutashvili go down and when he got up he walked to this corner and it was stopped with Levan still protesting. After two completed rounds the judges had it 20-18 Havnaa, 19-19 and 20-18 Lukhuatashvil, who should better learn to shut up when being punched at. There was real controversy in the super featherweight fight between Frederik Hede Jensen (5-1) and Spaniard Ruben Garcia (5-8-2). Garcia appeared to find a home for his right hand in the first as Hede, a southpaw, seemed to walk into them. Then in the second, Garcia hurt Hede with crackling body punches and as the Dane bent over, Ruben waled away and strayed very low. with a few punches. The referee broke them apart and deducted a point from Garcia without any previous warnings. As the round ended Garcia landed with a light punch just after the bell – and again he had a point deducted.
In the third Garcia was borderline low with a light punch and there was a third point deducted and when the Spaniard protested he was disqualified. It was a fight that Hede Jensen would have lost had Garcia kept his cool and the referee had been less “hometownish.”
Middleweight Landry Kore (10-0-1) outscored Czech Tomas Bezvoda (6-7) in a solid fight that never really took off. It was scored 59-55 twice and 60-54.
Super middleweight Haris Dzindo (11-0) knocked out out of shape Hungarian veteran Istvan Zeller (38-27) 2:45 into the first of a scheduled eight-rounder that was for the vacant GBU Continental title at light heavyweight. Zeller was in fact even over 175 and looked like a middle aged office worker in the ring who needed to shed some weight. He was caught by a well timed right and went down, but somehow got up but was stopped on his feet.
June 21 – Koge, Denmark. Hadi Hamane Promotion staged their inaugural in this small countryside town outside of Copenhagen with six Swedes and one Dane on the bill. Promoter Hamane is Danish, but has his eyes set on Sweden and has nine Swedes signed up, all with decent credentials from the amateurs, but none with outstanding careers.
HHP got five shows planned for the fall, four in Sweden and one in Denmark.
On this show with seven four rounders, all main events, or with no main event take your pick, the most experienced fighter on the bill was super welterweight Simon Henriksson (6-3), who got his career back on track with a win over Vanja Dujim (0-4-1). Henriksson won every round, however, he looked rusty. He had former WBO champ Armand Krajnc in his corner.
Light heavyweight Mariusz Gnas made his pro debut and got a very tough opponent in Latvian Juris Zandovskis (1-1). Gnas was stunned in the first and even appeared to go down, but it was ruled a slip and he fought back and was the better boxer, while Zandovskis was the stronger of the two. It went back and forth with Gnas a close winner by 39-37 from the judges in what was the best fight on the show.
The sole Dane in the team cruiserweight Whissam Khattar outscored Amir Oglic, also a debutante over four. Oglic was down in the first. It was scored 40-35 on all cards.
Super welterweight Yaffet Amaniel, the second most experienced of the Swedes on the bill, got a win after two straight losses and stopped Aleksandar Manikovic in the second round. Amaniel is now 4-2.
Super lightweight Johannes Berhane won clearly over Mirko Jovic, who is better than his 2-12 record would indicate. Jovic was down in the fourth and lost on identical scores of 40-35.
The next HHP promotion is scheduled for Malmoe, Sweden, August 31.
Undefeted Enoch Mwandila Poulsen outpoints sturdy Michal Syrowatka to win vacant EU lightweight title at Denmark’s Randers Hall
June 15, Randers, Denmark. Danish Fight Night and Hall of Fame Promoter Mogens Palle returned to Randers for the first time in over ten years. This mid-size (the sixth biggest in Denmark) town had in the 70´s, 80´s and 90´s hosted some of the biggest shows in the Nordic countries and even Muhammad Ali stepped into the ring here and did some exhibitions on one of his farewell tours.
The most legendary of all fights is of course Jorgen Hansen’s dramatic, sensational come from behind win against title challenger Dave Green. Hansen had made it a career of blowing hot and then colder than most with some very poor performances. But with the arrival of then future WBA superwelter champ Ayub Kalule, Hansen got good sparring, learned how hard one must work to reach the top and a new more confident fighter developed. The skills was always there, and now Hansen began to put it all together.
Meanwhile, in the United Kingdom, Green prepared for a million dollar fight in the United States when an offer came in to fight the by now the 35-year old Hansen. Green and his team accepted.
The Randers Hall was sold out, but Hansen was by large and far written off as an has been. Green quickly got to his opponent and Hansen was floored in the second, but then it happened as Hansen scored with his mighty right fist and Green went down! Although Green got up, he was stopped moments later and the shocking upset victory by Hansen was a fact “The biggest turnaround I have seen in 35 years of boxing,” said the legendary British commentator Reg Gutteridge.
Enter the newsly renovated Randers Arena for the Jorgen Hansen Memorial. Hansen, the three-time EBU champ, passed away two years ago after a long battle with dementia, but some of fighters who appeared here in the past was ringside such as Gert Bo Jacobsen, Soren Sondergaard, Brian Nielsen, Thomas Damgaard and Anita Christensen.
Headlining this show was super lightweights Enock Mwandila Poulsen (11-0) and Michal Syrowatka (22-3) in a fight for the vacant EU title. It was a dangerous matchup for the inexperienced Poulsen, but he handled it well and pounded out a boxing lesson against his hard punching, strong opponent. Syrowatka kept chasing, but could never pin down Poulsen, who boxed on the move, sometimes moving more than punching. Poulsen appeared to be controlling the fight throughout. The judges had it closer than it looked with Poulsen the winner at 116-112, 117-111 and 118-111. To this reporter it looked like a shutout at 120-108.
With this win, Poulsen enters the Top Six in the EBU ratings and he has the talent to a long way.
24-year old Ditlev Rossing (12-0) is over the age for the WBC Youth title, but was allowed a final “graduation” defense and that was against the 38-year old American Demetrius Banks (10-8-1), who could not win the title even if he won the fight. Well, not that he tried very hard. Banks showed good defense and frustrated Rossing, who punched very low in the fifth and had a point deducted. Banks also complained about Rossing’s heavy right that he felt landed on the back of the head. and when Ditlev scored with a light punch borderline low, Banks played it out big time. In Round 8, after what he felt was nother foul punch, Banks threw himself to the floor and was counted out! He had lost every round up until then, but also managed to make Rossing look ordinary. He was a late sub.
Veteran Lolenga Moock captures IBA World Super Middleweight Title in headliner on rousing Aaarhus, Denmark fight card
May 18 – Aarhus, Denmark. Aging (47 years-old) veteran Lolenga “Lumumba Boy” Mock (43-16-1, 13 KO’s) won the vacant IBA title with the help of the referee and the judges with a split decision over Argentinian Mateo Damien “El Chino” Veron (28-24-3, 8 KO’s) before a packed house at the Vibby Hallen.
Veron, 29, had a point deducted in the seventh for holding and another in the tenth for pushing. At the end, all three judges had it 114-112 with two votes for Mock and one for Veron, who looked like the winner after a tough, exhausting fight where Mock did not just cut the ring off from his fast moving opponent, but he also stayed close smothering him, but was seldom effective with his punches. It certainly made for a number of difficult to score rounds. Veron hurt Mock badly late in the second and the Danish-Congolese veteran staggered to his corner when the bell rang.
“The Dane” did better in the third, but was again staggered late in round, although he may have won this one on his work rate and hard work, which the name of the game for Mock, who never was known for his speed and no one disputed that he was somewhat faded when he started an amazing comeback late 2015 and racked up eleven straight wins. That, however, was under the shrewd matchmaking of Mogens Palle, who picked good, but style wise perfect opponents for Lolenga. After a contractual dispute, Mock and Palle parted ways and Mock signed with MTK Global, who co-promoted this show with Mohamed Tehrani, and in came Veron, a capable fighter with speed and good footwork that was all wrong for Lolenga.
Veron won the first fight and a rematch was made billed as a farewell fight for Lolenga, as well. Mock worked very hard, but it looked as if Veron was pulling ahead on points until referee Klaus Hagemanns came up with the points deductions that kept it close. Mock looked shaken in both the tenth and eleventh and stayed close to Veron in the final round without punching much and simply smothering his opponent. Both men cheered at the final bell, but Veron, a veteran journeyman, probably knew it would not go his way, although it should have.
The IBA has already sanctioned another fight (Eric Moon vs. Justin Thomas on June 22) for the vacant title, but the open question is if Mock will retire now when he finally is world champion.
The pick of the undercard was Shakhobidin Zoirov, 26, from Uzbekistan, the gold medal winner from 2016 Rio Olympic Games. MTK brought in a skinny, flyweight kid from the Georgian Republic, Mishiko Shubitidze (12-14-3, 5 KO’s), as Zirov’s his opponent, and it was over at 2:20 of the first in a horrible mismatch. Zoirov, now 2-0 (2 KO’s), need much better competition if he is to develop his talent.
Cruiserweight Shahriyar Weissi, 4-2, returned after several years out and showed, as always, talent combined with a lack of conditioning, but it was enough as he outscored winless Bosnian Murat Novalic, 0-5, over four.
Super middleweight Haris Dzindo, 10-0, outscored Benjamin Skender, 5-15, over four and boxed well against a willing, but ill-conditioned opponent.
Hurshid Tojibaev, another former top class amateur from Uzbekistan, outscored Georgian Irakli Shariashvili, 5-3-1, over six. It was more or less target practice for Tojibaev, though he could never hurt his opponent.
Heavyweight Louison Loizou, 5-0 and from Cyprus, knocked out a totally green and inept Latvian named Pauls Vilbergs in the first. For Vilbergs it must have been the first time ever he was in a ring – and probably the last!
Super welterweight Frank Madsen, 3-0, knocked out Maksims Dembovksis, 1-7, with a right to the body in the second. It looked to be an even matchup in the first, but Madsen took over in the second.
German super welterweight Thulasi Tharumalingam, 6-0, stepped in for the injured Kim Poulsen and stopped Georgian Giorgi Bliadze, 8-15, in the fourth. Bliadze had his moments, but tired along the way.
Young battlers provide fistic thrills in Swedish fight promotion
By Per-Ake Persson
March 30 – Uppsala, Sweden. It was the first time ever for a professional boxing event in Uppsala, Sweden, and the promoters were awarded with an impressive crowd of about 800 at the Fyrishov. Super welterweight and local hero of Iranian descent Salah Nazer Taha, 3-0 (1 KO), headlined and won a unanimous decision against Georgian Shalva Guchmazovi, 1-3-1 (0 KO), in a four-rounder. Taha’s southpaw jab made the difference in a close, hard fought battle that was scored 40-36, 40-37 and 39-37.
Swedish champ Ahmet Rossi, 6-0 (4 KO’s), showed again his willpower and strength as he outscored Irakli Jeranashvili, 13-12-6 (8 KO’s), in another four-rounder at 154. Jeranashvili, of Gori, Georgia, stood up to his opponent in the first, but tired badly and resorted to holding, which resulted in him having points deducted in both the third and fourth frames. It was scored 40-34 on all cards.
Middleweight Otari Gogoberishvili, 10-11-3 (5 KO’s), outscored Johannes Vinasco, 6-2 (3 KO’s), on a majority decision after four. Vinasco, of Stockholm, Sweden, won the first round by loading up on his blows, while Gogoberishvili, of Lagodekhi, Georgia, threw light, but scores of punches and that won the fight for him. Vinasco’s chief cornerman and promoter Kamran Kabinejad was very disappointed and felt that close fights like this should not go against the local man. It was scored 38-38, 39-38 and 40-36 – and the last score raised some eyebrows.
Talented featherweight Daniel Gustavsson, 4-0 (0 KO), who fights a bit like Prince Naseem, outclassed Ukrainian Eduard Mirinets, 4-7-1 (2 KO’s) over four rounds. Gustavsson, of Cali, Colombia, but now residing in Tidaholm, Sweden. Gustavsson relies on reflexes and a good boxing mind and that worked well for him in this fight. The judges all had it 40-36.
Undefeated Pezhman Seifkhani wallops Rufino Angulo to capture vacant Royal Boxing Organization Heavyweight Title
By Per-Ake Persson
March 16 – Orebro, Sweden. Heavyweight Pezhman Seifkhani (9-0, 6 KO’s) was to have headlined Fight Life’slast promotion as well, but his fight was canceled after his opponent was unable to obtain a travel visa. This time, however, Brazilian Rufino Angulo (6-1-1, 5 KO’s) was booked and showed up for the fight and did well for two rounds, but was stopped in the third by the hard punching Swede, who shows surprising hand speed for a big man. With the victory, Seifkhani won the vacant Royal Boxing Organization Heavyweight Championship.Rufino, of Sorocaba, Sao Paulo, Brazil, came forward in the first two, but Seifkhani picked him off with spearing jabs and crackling hooks, and in the third he broke through and hurt the Brazilian with a left hook-right hand combination. Angulo refused to go down and Seifkhani poured it on for real and finally Angulo went over, but jumped up at once to show he was not hurt – but he surely was.
Pezhman Seifkhani has developed well and is worth keeping an eye on. Seifkhani is trained by ex-pros Kamran Kabinjead, the show’s promoter, and Tonton Semakala.
In the chief support, Croatian light heavyweight Marko Calic (9-0) knocked out Clebson Tubarao (3-1-1) at 2:15 of the second of a scheduled six-rounder. Calic put on a boxing clinic, did not miss a punch, nor waste a move as he picked apart Tubarao and finally took him out. Calic is ready for bigger fights. Marko fights out of Pula, which was the hometown of ex Olympic Gold Medal winner and later WBC 175-lb. king Mate Parlov and he has the talent to go all the way.
In the first ever Swedish title fight at cruiserweight, Sami Jangirov (4-1-1) outscored Marcus Alberts (6-6) in a hard-fought, close six-rounder that went back and forth with both at one time or another staggered. Alberts failed to use his better reach and the stocky Jangirov scored with solid left hooks. It was a war at times with the two slugging it out toe to toe, but Jangirov had the better punches and won on scores of 58-56 twice and 59-56. Alberts was badly cut over the left eye in the fourth, although he kept fighting and showed a big heart, but he should have boxed better. Jangirov is a primitive slugger, tough as nails, however, he comes in straight ahead.
Italian super welterweight Denis Nurja (4-0) won over Israrullah “The Afghan Lion” Yaqobzai (5-1) in a four-rounder. Yaqobzai, 32, was hurt early and was down and never seemed to recover or get into the fight as Nurja, a big man for his weight division, landed almost at will. “The Afghan Lion” fought on and had his best round in the last, but Nurja, 25, won clearly on scores of 39-36 twice and 40-35. Yaqobzai and his team needs to sit down and look into what went wrong. Israrullah showed the heart of a lion, but his reflexes looked shot and so did his punch resistance.
Greek super welterweight Panagiotis Matsagkos (4-1) stopped Yaffet Amaniel (3-2) at 2:12 of the third. Matsagkos took his time to get started, but once he found the range for his heavy right it was all over after two knockdowns. Amaniel had Oscar Ahlin in his corner, but it did not help.
Emil Pettersson (2-0) outscored Slovakian Henrick Herak (2-5) over four, also at super welterweight Herak looked green and inept in the first, but hs cornerman, the legendary Laszlo Patzerko, gave him a boxing lesson in the break between rounds and Henrick was also effective in the second. Pettersson, however, did better and Herak was close to being stopped in third, but lasted the distance. It was scored 40-36 on all cards.
As usual, Fight Life Promotionstaged the event at Tegelbruket and the place was just about packed.
EBU heavyweight king Agit Kabayel outpoints Andriy Rudenko over 12
By Per-Ake Persson
March 2 – Magdeburg, Germany.SES Boxing was back at the plush Maritim Hotel right in the city center for a night billed as “Die Nacht der Schweren Jungs”that translates into “The Night of the Big Boys” and it was mainly a show with heavyweight fights.
Topping the bill was EBU heavyweight champion Agit Kabayel, 19-0 (13 KO’s), or 22-2, depending on two different boxing sources (BoxRec excludes the Bigger is Better Tournament fights, while they are recognized by Fight Fax), in a voluntary defense against Ukrainian Andriy Rudenko, 32-4 (20 KO’s). Rudenko, a professional since 2006, has done well at home, but lost whenever he has stepped up in class with losses to Alexander Povetkin, Hughie Fury and Lucas Browne.
Against Kabayel, of Bochum, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany, the Ukrainian made a fast start and tried to pin down the champion, who likes to box on the move and retreat. The pace was fast, especially for heavyweights, and both scored well, though they were unable to hurt one another.
By the fourth round, the pace began to tell on Rudenko, and Kabayel sensed it as he began to work more to the body of his opponent. The challenger was in trouble during the fifth, and in the sixth Kabayel, 26, hurt him for real. Rudenko, of Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine,suddenly turned away from the action and sank down to his knees to take a count. He looked like a spent force. Once Andriy got to his feet, Kabayel went all out to try and finish the job, but the challenger found his second wind and traded with the champion and in fact performed admirably late in the session.
Rudenko, 35, went back to his corner shaking his head to get his senses back, but came out for the seventh and gave Kabayel a tough battle all the way even if he continued to shake his head after every round like it all was lost.
Neither man had the power to hurt the other and Kabayel knew the fight was won and boxed a safety first strategy in the last two rounds and that made the scorecards a little closer than it actually was. The judges had it 117-110, 116-111 and 119-108.
Next up for Kabayel should be a mandatory defense and that will be against the tough Swede, Otto Wallin, who had to pull out of the planned fight when his trainer Joey Gamache got injured after being attacked on open street in New York City.
In the co-feature, WBO I/C heavyweight king Tom Schwarz, 24-0, retained his laurels employing heavy right hooks as he knocked out Germany-based Croatian challenger Kristijan Krstacic, 17-2, 2:45 into the second stanza.
Schwarz has been carefully matched and has yet to be tested, but he has developed well and he dominated this fight. Krstacic was too small and did not have the punch, or strength, to challenge the champion, who began to score with his right hook early in the second. Krstacic was first wobbled, then hurt and floored. He got up got more of the same and was soon on the canvas again. The writing was on the wall in capital letters and a third knockdown followed and this time it was ten and out.
Touted heavyweight Peter Kadiru made his pro debut and while he showed promise, he also showed that there is still much to be learned as he outscored a tough weightlifter type in Artur Kubiak, 1-1, from Poland. Kadiru worked well behind his jab, but could never get his short, strong opponent in any kind of trouble. It was scored 60-54 on all cards. Kadiru is managed by Bernd Boente, who was a partner with the Klitschko brothers during most of their respective careers, and promoted by SES.
Moroccan star Mohammed Rabbii, 9-0, got a good learning fight from experienced veteran Rafal Jackiewicz, 51-21-2. Rabbii showed good skills, fast hands and varied his attack well, but Jackiewicz, a former EBU 147-lb. champ and not as good as he once was, but still capable, was able to read him and was never in trouble. It was scored 80-72 on all cards. This fight was made at super welterweight.
Light heavyweight Adam Deines, 17-0-1, swept aside Hungarian Zoltan Sera, 32-18-1, and won on knockout 2:00 into the third. Sera was down in the first and second as well.
EC Boxing had Christian Hammer in action in Brooklyn, New York at the Barclays Center this evening and had two guys fighting on this German show in Erik Pfeifer and Danilo Milacic, all three heavyweights. Pfeifer, 4-0, knocked out Italian Angelo Rizzo, 5-1-1, 2:23 into the first with big left hooks to the body, and Milacic, 6-0, stopped Bulgarian Zheko Zhekov, 3-5-1, in the third. And as for Hammer (24-6, 14 KO’s), he lost to to high ranking heavyweight contender Luiz Ortiz (31-1, 26 KO’s) on a 10-round unanimous decision.Heavyweight Hussein Muhamed, 10-0, would have lost against Ukrainian Alex Mazikin, 14-14-2, had the latter been in shape – but he clearly was not and has not been in serious training for years. Mazikin, 44, was an excellent amateur – winning Olympic Silver – but that was then and in the pros Mazikin has became a good opponent able to test a prospect until his bad conditioning catches up with him. Alex was winning the first round until Muhamed, 28, floored him with a drilling left to the body.
Mazikin came back well in the second and did even better in the third, although he was by now exhausted and went down again. The end came in the fourth after another body shot and the weary and hurt Mazikin sank down on his knees and his cornerman waved with the towel.
Fight-Life Promotions puts on exciting card of ring thrills in Orebro, Sweden
Story by Per-Ake Persson
Orebro, Sweden. A promoter’s worst nightmare came true during fight week when it was clear that Ghanian heavyweight Nuhu Azuma could not obtain a visa to travel to Sweden. No reason was given and decision could not be appealed. This led to the situation where local hero and ticket seller Pezhman Seifkhani was left without a fight as the Swedish legislation call for special permission for fights over 12 minutes duration and one must apply 60 days in advance.
Seifkhani vs Azuma should have been for the RBO heavyweight championship, a small organization based in France. Small title or not, this was a heavy investment for Fight- Life Promotions, headed by Kamran Kabinejad, who suffered a heavy loss. The show, however, went ahead now topped by by female welter Patricia Berghult.
Berghult won the vacant RBO title with a clear win over Argentinian Yamila Bellen Abellaneda after eight, two-minute rounds. It was scored 80-72 twice and 79-73. Patricia had about 100 fans from Malmoe way down south traveling to Orebro to support her.
Croatian light heavyweight Marco Calic, 8-0, came back after an injury related layoff and did a number on strong, but limited slugger Bekan Mukhulishvili, 7-2. Calic won every round, although he was unable to hurt his opponent – but he did show very skillful boxing and is one to watch.
“The Afghan Lion” – super welterweight Israrullah Yaqobzai, 5-0, won a technical decision over Bar Gelenidze, 5-6-1. Yaqobzai likes to mix it up and it was give and take with Gelenidze on the floor in the second. In the third round “The Lion” was cut and he was stunned as well. Surprisingly, Gelenidze came on strong at the end of the round.
In the corner for Israrullah they had nothing to work with and early in the fourth the cut got worse and the doctor said “no” to more boxing and it went to the scorecards (in accordance with the Swedish rules). Yaqobzai won on scores of 30-6 and 39-37 twice.
Middleweight Johannes Vinasco, 6-1, won a razor thin majority decision over Greek Grigoris Nikolopoulos, 2-2, in a four rounder. It was close enough for a draw and one judge had it 38-38, but was overruled by 39-37 on the two others. These two might rematched.
Welterweight and pro debutant Emil Pettersson won over Irakli Zubiashvili, 1-1, in the show’s opener and displayed good skills, but was too easy to hit. It was scored 40-36 on all cards.
Fight-Life has racked up ten years in the business and works with a small budget, but keeps going and will be back early 2019. There shows may be low on budget, but high on ring thrills.
–November 10, 2018
“Rising Stars VI” fight promotion thrills fans in Katrineholm, Sweden
Story By Per-Ake Persson
September 29 – Katrineholm, Sweden.Promoter Annette Engstrom staged a small club show billed as “Rising Stars VI” at the Duveholms Hall in Katrineholm with her husband Simon Engstrom headlining. Engstrom, a light heavyweight. had no problem in knocking out Hungarian Jozsef Barati, 3-2, 1:52 into Round 2. Barati went down early in the second and it was called off at 29 seconds. The Hungarian was a soft touch and Engstrom, a puncher, but somewhat limited technically, needs tougher opposition if he is to develop. Engstrom, now 5-1, fights again December 1 in Skovde.
Super middleweight Rocco Wadell, 5-1, showed up in less than top shape and paid the price against a capable opponent in Ukrainan Anton Dyachenko, 2-2. When Dyachenko switched to southpaw he discovered that Wadell was open for a left to the body and the Swede was hurt and went down in the third. Wadell showed toughness in fighting back, but breathed heavily and was unable to find the second gear. Dyachenko won a split decisions by tallies of 38-37 (twice) for him, while one judge had Wadel winning at 38-37.
Featherweight Daniel Gustavsson, 2-0, showed signs of Prince Haseem as he outscored Latvian Zigurds Krauklis, 2-2, in a four- rounder. Gustavsson won all four rounds and showed talent, but also left himself wide open at times.
Cruiserweights Samir Jangurov, 2-0, and Maksim Ogurcovs, 0-3, staged the best fight of the night with Jangurov, a somewhat crude slugger, taking the fight to the Latvian and won clearly, but had to work hard for the win.
Super welterweight Ahmed Rossi, 4-0, looked strong as he stopped Roman Zinchenko, 3-6, at 2:36 of the second of a scheduled four-rounder. Zinchenko was hurt by body shots and was down in both the second and third rounds.
Another super welterweight, Salah Nazar Taha, 2-0, opened the show and stopped a soft looking Zsolt Friesz, 4-4, 1:14 into the second. Friesz was down in the first as well.
September 29 – Waldenbuch, Germany. Z! Promotions returned after a short break and staged a show in Waldenbuch, a suburb to Stuttgart, again had heavyweight Erkan Teper in action. Teper’s career has been quite controversial, with claimed positive doping tests at least twice and suspensions that followed. In July of 2015 he knocked out David Price to win the vacant EBU title and looked like a genuine contender, but then came the positive tests for a forbidden substance – all denied by Team Teper – and a lengthy layoff followed. He then lost crucial fights back to back against Mariusz Wach and Christian Hammer and while he has won three straight since then, he has not looked the same.
Robert Helenius’career has also had more downs than ups in recent year. Hand injuries and promotional problems have caused long layoffs and he did not look good in losing to Dillian Whyte and winning twice against cruiserweight Yuri Bykhautsou.
In other words, this fight officially for the vacant IBF Intercontinental title, was a genuine crossroads fight and Helenius, 28-2 (17 KO’s), responded with his best performance since 2011 (when he beat Samuel Peter and Sergej Lyakhovich) and knocked out Teper, 19-3 (12 KO’s), at 2:59 of the eighth round.
Teper was hurt by a left hook and Helenius followed with a follow up left hook that landed flush on the chin. Teper fell on his back and hit his head on the canvas. His upper body was outside of the lowest rope, but he still tried to get up while referee Jean Pierre van Imschoot counted him out.
Teper, 36, also suffered a possible broken nose in the second and that clearly bothered him. Helenius, of Marehamn, Finland, much taller, but not much heavier, kept pumping out his jab to measure Teper and keep the distance and it worked. Teper, of Ahlen, Germany, kept coming and had a good opening round, though was hurt late in the third by a right and needed help to find his corner.
Helenius’physical condition has been a question mark in later years, but here he was in excellent shape and kept stabbing his foe with his jolting jab and followed up with dangerous left hook – right hand combinations. It was a close, intense fight, but Helenius seemed to dominate and Teper’s nose was in bad shape at the end.
For Robert Helenius, 34, this means he is back in business and in line for some major fights. For Teper, this might spell the end of his days as a contender. For Z!, well their main fighter is gone, but the German market is pretty full of talent that can be developed with a good promoter.
Callum Smith shocks and rocks George Groves with a 7th-round KO to capture the WBA World Super Middleweight Title
Story By Per-Ake Persson
September 28 – King Abudulla Sports City, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The all- British finale of the inaugural World Boxing Super Series at super middleweight somehow landed in the Saudi Arabia Red Sea port of Jeddah. There were many reasons for that and they all spell M-O-N-E-Y. A sell-out crowd of 10,000 turned out for the thrilling battle.
As it was, the unbeaten Callum “Mundo” Smith, 167 1/4 and 25-0 (18 KO’s) won the WBA super World Super Middleweight Title, retained the WBC Diamond Super Middleweight Belt, and captured the Muhammad Ali Trophy and the WBSS Tournament with a decisive knockout at 2:04 of the seventh over “Saint George” Groves, 167 3/4, 28-4 (20 KO’s).
The fight was off to a tense start with hardly any real punches thrown in the first. Smith, a tall, careful, tactical puncher, kept his hands high while Groves, 30, had his left down and kept trying to outjab and outwork his taller opponent.
The pattern continued in the second, but in the third Smith, 28, showed his power as he stunned Groves, of Hammersmith, London, UK, with a right. This made Groves up the pace, but he was caught again in the fourth.
Smith, of Liverpool, Merseyside, UK, then seemed to become too passive as he waited for another chance and Groves won the fifth and sixth on his busy work rate. George, however, was unable to break down his adversary, who kept his guard up, moved well and looked dangerous at all times.
In the seventh, Groves attacked and was doing well, but as he came forward with his left hand low he leaned to his right and was caught by a short, hard left hook from Smith and staggered backwards – hurt for real. Sensing an incredible opportunity, Callum followed up with a blistering fusillade of leather, while Groves covered up and retreated into the ropes and ended up in his own corner. Smith picked his shots well and a right hook to the body was the finisher. Groves turned, bent over and sank down to his knees and referee Luis Pabon counted him out!
Groves was cut by the right eye as well and shook his head and said afterwards, “I’ve never been hurt by body shot like that.”
Scoring after six was very split. The judges at ringside had it 57-57, 59-55 (Groves) and 59-55 (Smith). This reporter had Smith ahead at 60-54
For Smith it is up and away as an all-Liverpool matchup against WBA regular titleholder Rocky Fielding may be in the cards. Smith won their first fight on a first-round stoppage in a British title fight, but Fielding has come a long way since then.
Groves said in the ring he would not retire but would take a break. “It was not meant to be,” explained the ex-champion. “Full credit to Callum. He boxed well and heavy-handed. He got me with a body shot at the end, which is embarrassing for me, because I have never been dropped with a body shot in my life, but he got the decisive shot in the end.”
George added, “I’m not going to make excuses. The shoulder worked and Callum was the better man on the night. That’s tough for me to say, but I have to be honest. I’m going to have a long rest, because it’s been a dogged year. I won the world title just over a year ago, but I want to go home because I miss my wife and kids.”
The new champion Smith remarked after the great win, “I know how good I am and I knew I had the ability. I had a slow couple of years and people forget about me. I think tonight I reminded people. I felt I was ahead at the time of the stoppage. I felt like I was beating Groves at his own game, It was a boxing match at range. I got my big shots off first and he couldn’t take it. It just means everything. I am not a man who shows a lot of emotion, you have never seen me this ecstatic, but you can see tonight it is a lifetime of work all gone into one. I’d like to think we are not finished, but I would love to defend my titles back in Liverpool and give a great fighting city a great night of boxing.”
The tournament as a whole featured some good fights, but the usual problems with boxing tournaments is when someone gets injured and/or pulls out, problems arise. Smith wound up fighting Nieky Holzken, instead of Juergen Braehmer, and was then kept waiting all year while Groves’ injured shoulder healed up.
The undercard was not much, but Chris Eubank Jr., who was stopped by Groves in the past, returned and outclassed J.J. McDonagh, who retired and did not come out for the third.
Danish heavyweight Kem Ljungquist, 6-0, stopped Mourad Omar, from Egypt, with body shots in the second round.
Dina Thorslund whips Yessica Munoz to capture vacant WBO super bantam title
Former EBU featherweight king Dennis Ceylan wins on undercard with victory over Levan Tsiklauri
By Per-Ake Persson
August 25 – Struer, Denmark- Team Sauerland returned to the Energi Park Arena for another show with female super bantamweight Dina Thorslund, 12-0, headlining. Thorslund did not disappoint and won the vacant WBO female 122-lb title in style with a unanimous decision over Mexican Yessica Munoz, a rather dubious 17-2-1. Munoz fought bravely, however, she was rather inept and walked into one counter after the other, but was never hurt. The contest lasted the distance as Thorslund won by scores of 100-90 (twice) and 99-91.
Former EBU featherweight champion Dennis Ceylan, 18-2-2, returned to the win column with a hard-fought, eight-round decision over Georgian Levan Tsiklauri, 10-4-1. Ceylan used to be a slick, fast boxer with nice moves, but here he decided to battle it out and it became an entertaining, but sloppy brawl. Ceylan’s better technique won it for him. Dennis was rattled in the last round and if Tsiklauri had any sort of a punch, this fight would have been over early. It was scored 79-73, 78-74 and 80-72.
Heavyweight Kem Ljunqquist, 5-0, knocked out Slovakian David Vyletel, 6-3, with a southpaw left to the body after only 1:13 of the first in a scheduled six-rounder.
Super welterweight Mikkel Nielsen, 6-0, won over Nikoloz Gviniashvili, 19-13-14, in a six-rounder. Gviniashvili came in as a late sub, but was strong and fit and gave Nielsen all he could handle. Both were cut early in the first round from a clash of heads and neither man was able to land effectively throughout the fight, which was close and messy. It was scored 58-56 (twice) and 59-55 with the Georgian corner protesting the decision strongly, though Nielsen seemed to nick it with a good last round.
Local hero Adam “The Wolf”Bashanov, 2-2, outscored Czech Petr Chmelik, 3-5-1, in another six-rounder. The two judges and the scoring referee had it 59-55 (twice) and 60-54. Bashanov can fight a bit, but tends to get a bit sloppy in between.
German-Albanian super middleweight Xhek Paskali, 3-0, got a tough test from Bernard Donfack, 23-20-4, and barely passed it. Donfack is on a downhill trend, but is still a dangerman with his heavy hooks that appeared to get through Paskili’s defense a few times. Xhek pulled ahead in the last three, however, for a win on scores of a too wide 59-55 (twice) and a too close 57-57.
The show opened with a slugfest as Norwegian cruiser Kent Erik Badstad, 2-1, outscored Ukraine’s Bohdan Zivyko, 0-3, over four. Zivyko looked ready to go several times, but always battled back and Badstad was easy to hit. It was scored 40-35 (twice) and 40-36.
Super middleweight Haris Dzindo, 7-0, outscored faded veteran Gary Abajyan over four. Abajyan laughed and showboated, but soaked up a beating and it appears it is time to leave hanging up.
Danish Fight Night provides ring thrills in Copenhagen at the Frederksberghallerne
Story By Per-Ake Persson
September 15 – Copenhagen, Denmark. After eight months out, Danish Fight Night promotion returned to Frederiksberghallerne with a seven-fight bill topped by cruiserweight Detlef Rossing, super lightweight Enock Poulsen and light heavyweight Jeppe Morell.
Rossing, 9-0 (5 KO’s), stopped Viktor Polyakov, an Ukrainan residing in Dusseldorf, Germany, 1:52 into the second round. Polyakov, 36, won a silver in the 2004 Olympics, however, as a professional, fights have been few and far between even if he had some good results at super middle and light heavy. As a cruiser Viktor, 13-5-1 (6 KO’s), looked too heavy, even if he showed good skills and a solid left hook. Rossing, 23, of Skive, Denmark, was too big and strong for the Ukranian to handle. In the second round, Detlef caught his opponent with a right followed by a left hook and Polyakov went down on the seat of his trunks. He got up at “8” but looked unsteady and it was stopped.
Frenchman Renald “Le Lion” Garrido, 22-21-2, pushed Enock Poulsen all the way and while the unanimous decision in favor of the Dane was fair enough – 78-74 on all cards – it did not give a true reflection of what a competitive contest it was. Garrido is all about pressure and if his adversary is in less than top shape Renald will wear him down. He lacks a punch, but his skills are good, though not outstanding. Garrido, though, has the heart of a lion and gives everything in every fight. Garrido started fast and then upped the pace. Poulsen knew what to do and moved away scoring with solid right handers from the distance and built an early lead. Nothing could stop Garrido, though, and he had a good fourth round and Poulsen, a very fine prospect, was forced to fight on the inside.
In the seventh, Poulsen was visibly tired and it seemed as if he headbutted his opponent late in the seventh. Garrido was cut by the right eye but, you guessed it, kept coming. In the final round Poulsen moved away and won clearly.
Jeppe Morell, 9-2, outscored 40-year old Argentinian Ruben Eduardo Acosta, 36-17-5, over eight. Acosta’s best days are probably past him, but he is still a capable performer and this was a good win for Morell, who lost to Sven Fornling his last time out. Morell’s timing was off, he kept missing with his southpaw left, and the jab never really found its mark. Acosta was tricky and threw wide and dangerous swings at the end of every round, but Morell’s work rate won rounds for him. Jeppe was also credited with a knockdown in a third, however, it appeared to be more of an off-balance stumble than a punch that caused it. At the end it was scored 80-73, and 79-72 twice for Morell.
Super welterweight Oliver Meng, 3-0, stopped Latvian Valentins Kosotovs, 2-2, 2:57 into the fourth of a scheduled six-rounder. Kosotovs looked fragile, but proved to be a tough customer and Meng just could not hurt him. The Latvian’s downfall was an ill-fitting mouthpiece and he had a point deducted in the fourth after losing it for the third time. Later in the same round Meng broke through and Kosotovs was stunned – and lost the mouthpiece again and it was stopped.
Debutant Allan Mahfoud got a tough first fight against Georgian Beka Murjineli, 4-5, and it looked like an upset was in the making, but Mahfoud’s better schooling prevailed and Murjinkneli punched himself out. In the fourth and final round the Georgian took a beating against the ropes and it was called off at 1:32.
Dina Thorslund whips Yessica Munoz to capture vacant WBO super bantam title
Former EBU featherweight king Dennis Ceylan wins on undercard with victory over Levan Tsiklauri
By Per-Ake Persson
August 25 – Struer, Denmark- Team Sauerland returned to the Energi Park Arena for another show with female super bantamweight Dina Thorslund, 12-0, headlining. Thorslund did not disappoint and won the vacant WBO female 122-lb title in style with a unanimous decision over Mexican Yessica Munoz, a rather dubious 17-2-1. Munoz fought bravely, however, she was rather inept and walked into one counter after the other, but was never hurt. The contest lasted the distance as Thorslund won by scores of 100-90 (twice) and 99-91. Former EBU featherweight champion Dennis Ceylan, 18-2-2, returned to the win column with a hard-fought, eight-round decision over Georgian Levan Tsiklauri, 10-4-1. Ceylan used to be a slick, fast boxer with nice moves, but here he decided to battle it out and it became an entertaining, but sloppy brawl. Ceylan’s better technique won it for him. Dennis was rattled in the last round and if Tsiklauri had any sort of a punch, this fight would have been over early. It was scored 79-73, 78-74 and 80-72.
Heavyweight Kem Ljunqquist, 5-0, knocked out Slovakian David Vyletel, 6-3, with a southpaw left to the body after only 1:13 of the first in a scheduled six-rounder.
Super welterweight Mikkel Nielsen, 6-0, won over Nikoloz Gviniashvili, 19-13-14, in a six-rounder. Gviniashvili came in as a late sub, but was strong and fit and gave Nielsen all he could handle. Both were cut early in the first round from a clash of heads and neither man was able to land effectively throughout the fight, which was close and messy. It was scored 58-56 (twice) and 59-55 with the Georgian corner protesting the decision strongly, though Nielsen seemed to nick it with a good last round.Local hero Adam “The Wolf”Bashanov, 2-2, outscored Czech Petr Chmelik, 3-5-1, in another six-rounder. The two judges and the scoring referee had it 59-55 (twice) and 60-54. Bashanov can fight a bit, but tends to get a bit sloppy in between.
German-Albanian super middleweight Xhek Paskali, 3-0, got a tough test from Bernard Donfack, 23-20-4, and barely passed it. Donfack is on a downhill trend, but is still a dangerman with his heavy hooks that appeared to get through Paskili’s defense a few times. Xhek pulled ahead in the last three, however, for a win on scores of a too wide 59-55 (twice) and a too close 57-57.The show opened with a slugfest as Norwegian cruiser Kent Erik Badstad, 2-1, outscored Ukraine’s Bohdan Zivyko, 0-3, over four. Zivyko looked ready to go several times, but always battled back and Badstad was easy to hit. It was scored 40-35 (twice) and 40-36.
Super middleweight Haris Dzindo, 7-0, outscored faded veteran Gary Abajyan over four. Abajyan laughed and showboated, but soaked up a beating and it appears it is time to leave hanging up.
Rocky Fielding bludgeons Tyron Zeuge in 5 to capture WBA World Super Middleweight Championship
By Per-Ake Persson
July 14, – Offenburg, Germany.German Tyron Zeuge has always been a somewhat enigmatic fighter. The talent is there, the solid German schooling is there, but since turning pro, Zeuge has changed trainers a few times, showed up in less than top shape for a number of fights, and has had problems making weight, as well. On top of that, there is an ongoing contractual dispute with Team Sauerland and it all came to light during the fifth defense of his WBA World Super Middleweight Title against Englishman Rocky Fielding, who on paper was a suitable opponent.
Zeuge, 167 1/4 and 22-1-1 (12 KO’s), took the fight to the taller, bigger challenger and barely missed with his sharp left hook. Fielding, 167 3/4 and 27-1 (15 KO’s), looked a bit stiff and amateurish in his style, but kept his boxing together well.
Zeuge, 26, of Berlin, Germany, won the first and second rounds by close margins and made Fielding retreat. The tide, however, turned with Rocky taking over the fight. In the fourth, Fielding, of Warrington, Cheshire, United Kingdom, became more dominant and midway the champion was hurt by a combination, topped by a left hook to the body. Tyron, surprisingly, tried to take the fight to the Brit, perhaps to smother him, but he took a beating in the last part of the round breathing heavily when the bell rang.
Part of the problem was also the blistering heat in the Baden Arena, but it was just as hot for Fielding and he looked to get stronger and stronger as the rounds progressed. In the fifth, it was one-way traffic with Zeuge fading fast and then hurt by a left hook to the head. As Tyron retreated, he soon was stunned by a left uppercut to the chin and then came a vicious left hook to the body that sent German crumbling to the canvas.
Tyron was a spent force and trainer, and still active former world champ, Juergen Braehmer knew it and threw in the towel and it was over at 2:46 of the fifth round.
Fielding, 30, celebrated wildly and was in the ring challenged by Braehmer, who probably is good enough to beat Fielding. German website boxen1.com reported that Braehmer threw a water bottle at Friedrich Ness, CEO for Sauerland, and put the blame on the defeat on poor planning and preparation, but the way Zeuge faded it must be asked how the very basic training had gone. Germany is now without a champion in the big four for the first time since 2004, although there is some good talent around, so that problem can be fixed. A bigger problem, however, is the lack of major networks televising the fights and putting the big money back on the table.
In the chief support, light heavy Leon Bunn, 10-0, outscored always tough journeyman Serhiy Demchenko, 19-14-1, over ten. Demchenko, a quality have gloves will travelfighter, was thoroughly outboxed and lost on scores of 99-91 on all three scorecards.
British super middleweight Zach Parker, 16-0, won every round against Serbian Geard Ajetovic, 31-18-1, in their eight-rounder and appears to be ready to step up in class.
Middleweight Denis Radovan, 10-0, won a wide unanimous decision over eight against Estonian Pavel Semjonov.
The show also marked the comeback for Hall of Fame promoter Wilfried Sauerland, who is back at the wheel of the company he started in 1980. Eldest son Kalle is fully occupied with Comosa and WBSS Tournament, while Nisse Sauerland resides in London and handles the Sauerland business in the UK and Scandinavia. Mr Sauerland said afterwards that Zeuge’s upset loss changed a lot of the planning made. As for Zeuge, he needs to get his act together and not enter the ring unless in top shape.
For Rocky Fielding, well, it is up and away and some good fights await probably on British soil.
IBF cruiserweight king Murat Gassiev bludgeons Yunier Dorticos to capture vacant WBA super crusier belt and other foreign fistic thrills
By Per-Ake Persson
February 3 – Shochi, Russia.The second semifnal in the WBSS tournament at cruiserweight proved to be just as good as the first one. Murat “Iron” Gassiev, 26-0 (19 KO’s), retained the IBF cruiserweight title as well, with a last round stoppage of Yunier Dorticos, 22-1 (21 KO’s). As the WBA named Denis Lebedev champion in recess the WBA super title was also at stake.
Dorticos, 31, of Havana, Cuba, but now risiding in Miami, FL, took the fight to the shorter Gassiev, 24, who apparently was very relaxed and chose to fight off the ropes. Dorticos appeared to grab an early lead, but was seldom effective with his punches as Gassiev covered up very well. The Cuban appeared to lose some steam as the fight progressed while Gassiev, of Vladikovkas, Russia, but now living in Big Bear, CA, paced himself carefully – too carefully it seemed, and trainer Abel Sanchez urged him to attack more.
Gassiev´s harder punches began to tell late in the fight, although it was not until the eleventh that Dorticos fell apart after having his head bashed in by a walloping left hook. Yunier held on and made it to the bell, but was floored in the twelfth and final round after a left hook. He made it up to his feet and tried to fight back, however, it was obvious that he had no legs under him and was soon floored again. A third knockdown followed and it was finally stopped at 2:52.
Gassiev will now fight WBO/WBC cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk on May 11 in Jeddah in Saudi Arabia. Both men are exellent fighters, but not very well known to the general public, especially not in the United States.
Former WBA super middle champ Fedor Chudinov, 17-2, stopped Finland’s Timo Laine, who was unable to come out for the eighth, having lost the previous seven. Laine, 21-10, got the call on Sunday and come Tuesday the deal was done and Laine was on for his biggest payday and fight yet – but he was surely not in Chudinov’s league and knew it. Still, Timo performed well and gave his all, but was out of his depth. The WBA Int’l title was at stake.
Japanese Hurricane Futa 25-7-1, knocked out Russian Vage Sarukhanyan, an exellent boxer with a fragile chin, in the seventh with a left hook. Futa floored Sarukhanyan in the third, but was in trouble in the seventh when he landed the finishing punch and won the WBC International title.
Two-time Olympian Mikhail Aloyan, 4-0, won a split decision over Nicaraguan Alexander Espinoza, 15-1-2, after ten. Aloyan´s lack of professional experience nearly cost him and he was stunned in the sixth with a bad swelling around his left eye, but came through and won a split decision after ten. It was scored 96-94 and 96-95 for Aloyan, who retained the WBA Int’l belt, and 96-94 for Espinoza.
Lightweight Roman Andreev, 22-0, won the vacant WBO International title with a hard fought ninth-round stoppage of Welshman Craig Evans. Evans made a good start, though he faded down the stretch and was under heavy pressure when stopped.
February 3 – Arendal, Norway.Sauerland Promotion staged its first show ever in Norway and had cruiserweight Kai Robin Havnaa, 12-0, headlining in his hometown. First Havnaa was lined up to fight Marino Goles, then Gezim Tahiri was the opponent, but when he pulled out Daniel Venci, 9-6, came in with a few days notice. Venci was stopped in two in what was a poor matchup. Havnaa, 9-0, is a strong, hard punching fighter, but technically limited. He is the son of former WBO champ Magne Havanaa and resembles his father both in style and look.
In the chief support light heavy Tim-Robin Lihaug, 17-4, got his career back on track with an eight-round unanimous decision over Vasyl Kondor, 18-19-1, from Ukraine. Lihaug had lost three of his last four and needed a win badly. As for the rest of the card, well, the less said the better.
February 3, Halle / Saale, Germany.SES staged its first show of the year at the Erdgas Arena with heavyweight Tom Schwarz, 20-0, on top defending the WBO I/C title against fellow German Samir Nebo. Schwarz won on a fourth-round TKO, adding the German title to his collection.
In the chief support former world title challenger Robin Krasniqi, 45-6, returned and outscored tough Polish journeyman Bartlomiej Grafka over eight exciting rounds.
February 2 – Florence, Italy.Italian cruiser Fabio Turchi, 14-0, had no problems stopping Argentinian Dario German Balmaceda, 15-17-2, 2:59 into the first in the headliner of this Boxe Loreni promotion. Balcameda was rescued by his corner late in the first in a disappointing performance. Turchi’s WBC International Silver title was at stake and this matchup proved again that the WBC has problems in its policy to prevent mismatches.
Turchi is promoted by Evander Holyfield´s Real Deal Promotions in the United States. In the co-feature Vigan Mustafa, 19-3, won the national light heavy title with a second-round stoppage of Nicola Pietro Ciriani, 16-1-1.
Lolenga Mock and Sven Fornling notch wins on thrilling Copenhagen fight show
January 5 – Copenhagen, Denmark. This show – postponed from November 25 – marked Hall of Fame promoter Mogens Palle’s 60th anniversary since his promotion (in collaboration with his father and former EBU champ Jorgen Johansen) in November 1957 at the KB Hall in Copenhagen. The promotion took place at the Frederiksberghall, not far from the classic KB Hall where many of the biggest Palle shows took place in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and into the new century. Unfortunately, the KB was destroyed in a fire in 2011, so here we were on this chilly Friday evening with Palle now in collaboration with retired heavyweight Brian Nielsen promoting the 12th edition of their Danish Fight Night. The former EBU, EU and WBO/INT super middleweight champion Lolenga Mock, 45, has topped eleven of them and is 11-0 since coming back late 2015.
On this occasion Lolenga took on former interim WBA middleweight king Dmitri “Night Wolf” Chudinov, 167 ½ and 20-2-2 (13 KO’s), in a non-title ten-rounder. Mock, as always, was super fit at 165 ½, and Chudinov was off to a slow start in what became a tactical fight. Chudinov was the busier in the early rounds and grabbed an early lead.
From the third round onwards, however, Mock, the taller, bigger man, kept his distance and used his reach better. The rounds were even and difficult to score, but Mock, of Kinsasha, Democratic Republic Of The Congo, but now residing in Aarhus, Denmark, edged ahead with his jab as the main weapon. Neither man was able to catch the other with power punches, although Chudinov had received a swelling by the right eye. After eight frames, this reporter had the two boxers even, but “The Dane” upped the pace and won the ninth.
In the final rounds Chudinov, of Serpukhov, Russia, lost his mouthpiece twice and that made it four times altogether and referee Jan Christensen promptly deducted a point. Mock then landed with a solid one-two and won the round.
The scorecards read a too wide 99-90 and 96-93 twice. Going into the fight, Chudinov was ranked #8 by the WBA and #15 by the WBC, so this was an important win for Mock (42-14-1, 13 KO’s) and one that might land him a world title opportunity, or a shot at the EBU title.
The co-feature saw IBF Baltic light heavyweight champ Sven Fornling, 175, 13-1 (7 KO’s), from nearby Malmo, Sweden, retain his laurels on a controversial TKO win over Danish challenger Jeppe Morell, 175, 8-2 (3 KO’s). It was also billed as a Battle For The Nordic Crown. Morell, a southpaw, started fast and put pressure on the Swede, but Fornling came back well and closed the session strongly and appeared to shake the challenger with his right.
The second was more of the same with Fornling retreating and looking to counter, while Morell, of Aarhus, Denmark, put on the pressure and both had their moments. The fight was decided at the end of the second where heads clashed and Morell was badly cut by the right eye. Belgian referee Jean Pierre van Imschoot appeared to make no ruling and the doctor was not called in to make an inspection.
Morell came out for the third and was clearly in distress and midway through the round he pointed out to the referee that he was having problems with his eyesight, but was ordered to fight on and so he did and did well with an all-out attack. When Morell returned to his corner he made it clear he was unable to go on and his retirement was accepted – still with no doctor involved! Thus it ended with a TKO win in the fourth (not out) for Fornling. Had Morell’s corner or the referee, called for the ringside physician it would probably had been stopped and declared a technical draw or No Contest. An official protest may come. Fornling was ahead 29-28 on two cards and down 30-27 on the third.
Derrick Rossing, 199, 8-0, won the vacant WBC Youth title with a ten-round unanimous decision over Georgian Soso Abuladze, 194, 13-9-1. It was scored 99-91, 98-92 and 100-90 after ten rounds with Rossing, the bigger man, boxing on the outside and his stocky, hard punching opponent, trying to cut the ring off. Every round followed the same pattern and it was not overly exciting to put it in a diplomatic tone.
In The Battle of Denmark, IBF Youth champ Jonas “Tiger” Madsen, 172 1/2, 12-0, vs Andreas Lynggaard, 173 3/4, 5-1, was the fight of the night and one of the best brawls seen in a long time. Both are relatively inexperienced and made some grave mistakes, but gamely battled it out from the first bell to the last with several hard exchanges and the crowd was on their feet at the end.
Madsen was fast out of the gate and had Lynggaard, back after a long layoff due to injuries, under pressure. Early in the third, Madsen became too eager and walked into a heavy right and was visibly stunned, although he managed to smartly hold on. From that point on, the fight went back and forth and the two kept an enormous pace battling it out punch for punch. Lynggaard had the power, but threw his punches one by one, while Madsen had the busier work rate.
Lynggaard was hurt in the ninth from a left hook and looked tired and worn down at the end of the round, but gallantly was back in it in the tenth for a strong finish where it looked as if he had Madsen hurt in final ten seconds. As it was, it was a split decision with Madsen ahead 96-94 and 97-93 on two cards and 96-94 for Lynggaard on one. A rematch must be in the cards, but maybe later when both have more experience. I had them even at 95-95.
In the fourth title fight and the fifth ten rounder on the bill, Enock Poulsen, 140, 7-0, won the vacant IBF Youth title with a ten-round unanimous decision over Mexican Guadelupe Acosta, 138 1/2, 13-3. It was scored 100-89 and 99-91 twice. Acosta, a brave warrior, had a point deducted in the eighth after losing his mouthpiece one time too many. Poulsen, a solid prospect, dominated the fight with his superior skills, but Acosta never stopped trying and had his moments when the Dane slowed down a bit in the later rounds.
Heavyweight Pierre Madsen, 248 3/4, and 12-0, worked over overweight Georgian southpaw Davit Gogishvili, 245 3/4, 20-9, to the body for a TKO win 42 seconds into the fourth of a scheduled six-rounder. Gogishvili, a decent fighter who was just not in shape, was down in the second, twice in the third and twice in the fourth before it was stopped.
In the first bout of the evening, 18-year old prospect Oliver Meng, 140, 2-0, got a good learning fight from Giorgi Biladze, 144, 5-4, over four. Biladze, from the Georgian Republic, had a wild style and kept switching his stance and caught the Dane with some good shots, but was outboxed in between. Binadze was down in the second, though it appeared to be more of a slip than a knockdown. It was scored 40-35 on all cards.
Boxing Explodes in Orebro, Sweden
Story by Per-Ake Persson
Nov 25 – Orebro, Sweden. Fight Life IV went ahead in front of a packed estimated 900 spectators – at Tegelhuset in Orebro, Sweden. Heavyweight Pezhman Seifkhani, 7-0, headlined and was back from a serious arm injury. Pezhman is ready for six- and -eight rounders, but the difficult Swedish law that regulates martial arts and professional boxing makes it diffult to stage fights over that distance as it requires an application made 60 days before a fight – with opponent named. Should this particular opponent pull out it all has to be done again. So for this time and again Seifkhani was restricted to a four rounder. In the other corner was Italian Paolo Iannucci, 3-1, who proved to be a durable spoiler and took everything his opponent could dish out, smothered him and lasted the distance with no problems although he lost every round.
Croatian lightheavy Marco Colic, 5-0, came to Sweden to spar, but was signed up by Fight Life Promotion and made his Swedish debut against Ukrainan southpaw Yevheniy Chumachenko. Colic, a noted amateur star, was taller, had the reach, but looked a bit tense and nervous in the early going and was badly cut after a clash of heads, however, he then found the range in a fast paced contest and floored Chumachenko with a right in the third. Chumachenko was unsteadyfor the reminder of the round, although he lost the fourth as well.
Italian cruiser and switchhitter Gabriele Guainella, 4-0 outscored willing but limited Swede Marcus Alberts, 5-2, onmajority decision. Guainella had a tricky style and threw a dangerous right hook from a southpaw stance and Alberts was hurt in the fourth and close to being stopped.
The bout was scored 39-38, 39-37 and 38-38.
Dutchman Djoby Diagne, 3-3, lost a close call to UK-based Afghan Isralluah Yaqobazi, 3-0, in a heated fight where “The Afghan Lion” was badly cut in the third, but kept coming. Diagne appeared to land with the cleaner, harder punches, although the win went to Yaqobazi on scores of 39-37, 39-38 and 38. Diagne looked like he deserved at least a draw.
Big heavyweight Johnny Iwersen, 3-0, is musclebound and stiff, but had too much strength and power for the gam, though eventually outclassed Bulgarian Georgi Prodanov, 1-1.
Prodanov was floored in the first, second and twice in the third before he was ruled ten and out after the fourth knockdown.
Super welterweight Johannes Vinasco, 5-0, had no problem with Bulgarian Anatoli Lyubenov, 1-3, who looked rather soft and tired quickly. Vinasco broke through in the second and floored his opponent twice before it was stopped.
Promoter Kamran Kabinejad and his team have done a good in building their boxers and the next steps awaits and that is six- and eight-rounders for some of their guys – a difficult move due to the legislation and also because of the financial limitations a promoter without a TV deal is faced with.
WBO crusierweight king Oleksandr Usyk sinks Marco “Kapt’n Huck to retain title for third time
Story by Per-Ake Persson
September 9 – Berlin, Germany – The much publicized World Boxing Super Series, WBSS, got underway at the Max Schmeling Halle on a Sauerland Event promoted show with WBO cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk, 199 1/2, 13-0 (11 KO’s), defending his title against former WBO cruiser king Marco Huck, 198 3/4, 40-5-1 (27 KO’s).
The WBSS will end in May and will feature a $50 million prize fund.
Oleksandr was an outstanding amateur and still fights like an amateur, moving a lot and quite upright, but he can also fight for real and did a number on Huck by outboxing him in every round and handing out a brutal, one-sided beating. Huck is basically a primitive brawler who has relied on long bursts of punches from all angles with a lot of rough-house tactics along the way. However, now self promoted and out of Sauerland’s protective umbrella, Marco seemed unable to get in his game and referee Robert Byrd kept warning him about low blows, and when Huck sent Usyk to the floor after a slip in the eighth he had a point deducted.
Usyk, 30, moved well using his reach, southpaw stance and timing and placed one shot after another as Huck tried to stalk him. The champion was just too slick for his adversary and had too many moves for Huck to handle.
The contest became increasingly one-sided as Oleksandr picked his shots well landing almost at will to the head and body. What was surprising was that Usyk also was superior in physical strength and Huck simply got nowhere as he kept trying to land body blows that kept straying low, although Marco did land with a good right to head, but that was about it.
Huck was in trouble at the end of the third as Usyk opened up for the first time. If there is one thing missing from Oleksandr’s arsenal it is true punching power and it showed again here as Huck remained on his feet staggered, but not hurt.
The beating got increasingly one-sided and 2:18 into the tenth the referee had seen enough and stopped it and it was a well timed stoppage. Huck lost every round and was without chance of winning at the time. This might be it for both Kapt’n Huck and his Huck Box Promotion crew to abandon ship.
Usyk thus advanced to the WBSS semifinal and will take on the winner of Mairis Briedis-Mike Perez that goes ahead on September 30 in Riga, Latvia. With only 13 fights under his belt Oleksandr is likely to improve along the way.
WBSS is owned by Comosa AG, and this company has Sauerland Promotion AG among its shareholders. Comosa has sold the promotional rights to Sauerland Event. As for TV, well, in Scandinavia, MTG, also a shareholder in Comosa, they have not surprisingly bought the rights for the this tournament. However, there is still no U.S. TV on-board and it remains to be seen how this concept will work out financially.
On the undercard to Usyk-Huck cruiserweight, Noel Gevor, 22-1, won a unanimous decision over American Isiah Thomas, 15-2, after ten drab rounds. It was scored 100-89 on all cards. Thomas slipped in the third and somehow it was ruled a knockdown.
Middleweight Patrick Wojcicki, 10-0, had a tough time against tricky Frenchman Fouad El Messoudi, 14-10, but won a unanimous decision after eight.
Fernstrom Pro Box Promotion thrills fans in Stockholm, Sweden with its “Rising Stars III” fight card
Story by Per-Ake Persson
September 9 – Stockholm, Sweden, Fernstrom Pro Box Promotion opened the Scandinavian boxing season with an excellent small hall event billed as Rising Stars III held at the EnArena late afternoon in front of a packed house (around 550 spectators). There were eight fights on the bill all scheduled for four rounds.
Light heavyweight Robin Safar, now 3-0, headlined and did not disappoint against Djordje Markovic, 2-4-1. The Serbian had a wild, dangerous right and caught Safar hard in the third, but the Swede took it well and outworked his tiring opponent for a clear win on scores of 40-36 on all cards.
Super lightweight and reigning Swedish amateur champion Laziz Sharifov made his pro debut and impressed in outscoring Markovic’s compatriot Petar Peric, 5-5. Sharifov is a natural switch-hitter and went effortlessly from orthodox to southpaw and back, mixing his attack well. Petar possesses a good left hook, although Sharifov blocked it and hurt his opponent with body shots and showed decent power in both hands. All in all a very good debut.
Super welter Johannes Vinasco was in trouble in the third against Ukrainan Ruslan Mokrotskyi, a misleading 1-4, but upped the pace and won the fight on scores of 39-37 on all cards. It was a fast-paced, good fight. Vinasco improved to 4-0.
The middleweight fight between Ahmed Rossi, 3-0, and Goran Sucevic, 2-1-1, was over after only 1:04 of the first. Sucevic was caught by a big right and was hurt and turned his back to the action and the referee waved it off instead of giving a standing eight-count.
Hard punching Simon Engstrom, 2-0, knocked out Estonian Pjotr Russkikh, 0-1-1, 1:25 into the fourth and final round. Russkihh was brave, but was overwhelmed by Engstrom´s power and strength and was down in both the second and third rounds.
Cruiserweight Marcus Alberts, 5-1, gave his all against Predrag Jevtic, 1-2, but appeared to lack the necessary timing. Jevtic was in there to survive and did so with ease. It was scored 40-36 twice and 39-37.
Super welter and big ticket seller Yaffet Amaniel, 3-0, brought the house down with a controversial win over Pole Filip Rzadek, 2-7. Amaniel kept a fast pace, but was largely ineffective while Rzadek picked his shots better and looked like the winner – but came up short as two judges had it a strange 40-36 for the Swede, while the third had it a more realistic 38-38.
One punch was all it took for super middleweight Rocco Wadell, 3-0, to knock out Konrad Jaworski, 1-2, who went down and out 23 seconds into the first in the show opener. Wadell landed a weak looking left to the body that sent Jaworski to the canvas. That was it and no, while Konrad did act out big time in trying unsuccessfully to beat the count. Konrad was either hurt, or he could be possibly nominated for an Oscar.
Next Rising Stars show is scheduled for December 16 with a countryside edition set for October 28 in Katrineholm.
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Jonkoping, Sweden hosts first professional boxing show in 50 years
Story by Per-Ake Persson
June 10, Jonkoping, Sweden. The first professional boxing event in 50 years in this town in the Swedish bible belt went ahead with local man, super middleweight Sandor Lauritsen, 3-0, headlining in a four- rounder at a packed Harry’s Nightclub against Serbian Mladen Obradovic, 0-2-1. Lauritsen won every round on all cards but could not hurt his durable opponent and had to settle for a win on points.
In the co-feature, scheduled for six, super welter Daniel Hartvig’s unbeaten record, now 10-1-1, came to an end against tall, slick Frenchman Bernard Follea, a misleading 7-5-1. Hartvig, known for his toughness, is pretty much a straight forward one-paced, one-dimensional brawler and he was outpunched from the start. Follea moved and boxed well, and handed out a one-sided beating. Hartvig was hurt in the third, floored in the fourth, battered in the fifth, as he bravely kept coming.
In the sixth Hartvig finally went down again and as he rose at eight referee Mikael Hook correctly counted ten and out.
Talented welterweight Mohammed Saleh, 7-0, took apart Georgian Nika Nalikashvili, 3-3-1, and knocked him out in the third. Nalikashvili tried to make a war of it, but Saleh was sharp in his counters and the Georgian was down twice in the second and again in the third.
Light heavyweight Robin Safar, 2-0, stopped Serbian Vukasin Obradovic, 2-5, in third round. Safar hurt his opponent with drilling body shots and Obradovic was down twice in the second. As he took a knee in the third Vukasin’s cornerman waved with the towel and it was stopped.
In 1967 Bosse Pettersson, then closing in on the European title, beat Fabio Bettini, a very good fighter, in a ten rounder at a much bigger venue. The comeback show was at a much smaller level, but good enough and more shows are planned.
Fists and fury in hamburg fight show
Story by Per-Ake Persson
May 19 – Hamburg, Germany – EC Boxing and real estate tycoon and professional boxer Mario Daser joined forces for a show named “Big Deal” at the Barclaycard Arena for a night of dinner (there were 60 tables set up at the inner floor), entertainment and professional boxing. Daser, 13-0 and fighting at cruiserweight, took on comebacking Ola Afolabi, 22-6-4, in the headliner.
Well, as for his comeback, Afolabi retired after again losing to Marco Huck last year and was clearly not in it for this return back to the ring. He came in overweight, but was given three hours to lose the weight and finally made 200 lbs while Dase came in at 197.95.
As the fight began, Daser dominated, although he was very careful and took some time before opening up. But once he did it was just a matter of time and Afolabi’s corner threw in the towel at 2:00 of the third with many in the crowd booing. It certainly was a disappointing performance by the once world class fighter. Daser won the IBO International and WBO European titles. He is a former juvenile delinquent who turned straight and made it big time in the booming Hamburg real estate business, while boxing professionally on the side.
Light heavyweight Igor Mikhalkin, 20-1, won the vacant IBO title with a unanimous decision over once touted South African Thomas Oosthuizen, 26-1-2. Mikhalkin, a slick southpaw, came back earlier this year after a being paroled from a doping sentence and is a craftsman personified. He seldom wastes a move and is rarely exciting, but he always gets about his work and gets it done.
Oosthuizen has a long and troubled career behind him and this fight may have been the end at top level for this once top class prospect. At the end the judges had it 118-109 on all cards for the new champion, the first world champion EC has had. Mikhalkin previously held the EBU title.
Heavyweight Christian Hammer, 22-4, hammered out a ten-round unanimous decision over French veteran Zinedine Benmakhalouf. It was scored 96-93 twice and 96-94. Hammer retained the WBO Euro title and did just enough to win, although he was far from the all out fighting machine that stopped David Price, or the brave, tactical performer who outscored noted puncher Erkan Teper. A world title fight is in sight for Hammer within the next year.
Super welterweight Sebastian Formella, 15-0, won the vacant IBO Intercontinental title on scores of 98-92 and 97-92 twice over Russian Denis Krieger, 13-5-2. Formella hails from Hamburg, works in the port and sells lots of tickets. He has quick hands and is well schooled, but may lack the strength necessary to take him to the top.
Turkish super lightweight Fatih Keles, 9-0 and a former amateur star, won the vacant WBO European title with a close, hard fought victory over Dutchman Rafik Harutjunjan, 10-2. Harutjunjan was down in the eighth. It was scored 95-94, 96-95 and 97-92 – a scoring that indicates that without the knockdown there would have been a draw.
Swedish-based Serbian Aleksandar Todorovic, 11-14-1, signed earlier in the week a contract for a fight against Edmund Gerber, but at the weigh-in talented cruiser Huseyn Cinkara, 7-0, showed up and became the opponent. To everyone’s surprise, Todorovic was stopped in the fourth after suffering a broken nose.
In a huge mismatch, heavyweight prospect Ali Eren Demirezen, 5-0, stopped Serbian Milos Doveden, 2:30, in the first. Doveden is everything one would expect a four-round Euro level trialhorse to be, while Demirezen is a former Olympian in need of better opponents in order to improve.
Story by Per-Ake Persson
February 25 – Orebro, Sweden – Heavyweight Pezhman Seifkhani, 26, 5-0 (3 KO’s), headlined the third edition of Fight Life at Tegelbruket in Orebro (Sweden). His opponent was Croatian Ante Verunica, 26, 3-3-1 (1 KO), and Seifkhani won a unanimous decision after six exciting rounds of boxing.
The local hero suffered what appeared to be a torn biceps muscle in his left arm in the second round and was on the verge to retire, but kept fighting and actually did better with one hand than he had done with two. As Verunica tried to put pressure on the Swede he walked into heavy right hand counters and was even floored in the third.
Pezhman could not follow up, though, and Verunica was unable to get untracked until the fifth, where he finally opened up with both fists to his foe’s head and body. Seifkhani, however, held up well under the pressure and won on scores of 58-55, 59-54 and a too wide 60-53.
In the co-feature, cruiserweight Marcus Alberts, 4-1, lost a split decision to Latvian journeyman Reinis Porozovs, 11-12-1, after a messy six-rounder with lots of clinching, wrestling on the inside and more misses than hits. It was a poor fight where Alberts never found the range. Porozovs tired badly, but knew a bit more about the art of boxing and stunned his adversary a few times with big swings. Alberts suffered a bad cut over the left eye as well.
After six it was scored 58-56 and 58-57 for Porozovs and 58-56 for Alberts.
Talented welterweight Mohammed Saleh, 5-0, outscored Irishman Michael Kelly, 8-10-1, after four and controlled the action throughout, but Kelly knew how to survive and did so with ease. It was scored 40-36 on all cards. Saleh has the moves, but lacks the punch.
Super middleweight Sander Lauritsen turned pro and got the crowd going as he stopped brave, but outclassed Georgian Dimitri Kutibashvili after 1:42 of the first after non-stop action where Dimitri kept coming with the better schooled Swede picking him off. Kutibashvili suffered a badly cut and swollen right eye and after an inspection the ringside physician called it off.
Copenhagen fight card thrills fans
Story by Per-Ake Persson
February 11 – Copenhagen, Denmark. Danish Fight Night VIII went ahead at the Frederiksberg Hall in the center of Copenhagen with a seven-fight card off TV (although it could be seen on internet for a small fee) show. Super middleweight Derrick “Superman” Findley, of Gary, Indiana from the U.S., returned to Denmark and showed what experience means in professional boxing as he won a close, but deserved unanimous decision after ten good rounds of boxing over the previously undefeated Daniel Heinze, 170 3/4 and 6-1 (2 KO’s).
Findley, 169 ¼, came out fast and grabbed the initiative from the first bell and floored Heinze with a left hook late in the first. It was more of a flash knockdown than anything else, however, it was still a 10-8 round for the American.
Findley (26-21-1, 17 KO’s) was on top in the second round as well, although Heinze, of Soroe, Denmark, began to work his way into the fight in the third and fought on even terms for a few rounds, but one could still feel that the Dane was struggling to get to his adversary, who would be a difficult opponent for anyone.
In the last round both men went all out, but by now Heinze’s better conditioning told and he won the frame, but it was too little too late. It was scored 96-93, 96-93 and 95-94 for Findley, who knows every trick in the book.
In another youth vs. veteran matchup, the result was reversed as the youth, Jeppe Morell, 176 1/2, 7-0 (3 KO’s), outscored the veteran, Bernard Donfack, 174 1/2, 23-15-3 (11 KO’s), over eight.
Morell, 27, a southpaw, had an advantage in height, weight and maybe even speed against the German-based self-proclaimed “Tiger from Cameroon”. Donfack, 36, was floored in the fourth after a series of left hands and was made to miss with his normally dangerous counters. Morell, of Aarhus, Denmark, boxed well for a win on scores of 79-72, 78-73 and 80-71.
Jonas “Tiger” Madsen, 172 3/4, 8-0, knocked out Croatian Ivan Jukic, 175 3/4, 29-10, with a right to the body 2:08 into the third. Madsen picked his shots well as Jukic, a southpaw, effectively covered up and blocked many of his foe’s blows, but the Dane’s body shots eventually got to him. Madsen was 5-3 in the amateurs before turning to soccer, but it was now back to boxing and he looks good.
Sherman Williams trained heavyweight Pierre Madsen, 247 1/4, 6-0, stopped late sub Jasmin Hasic, 279, 5-3, from Bosnia. Hasic was floored twice in the second and as he got up from the second knockdown the towel came in at 1:40. It was scheduled for six. Jasmin came to Denmark during the day of the fight and was quite overweight.
Media star Sarah Mahfoud made her debut and stopped a very inept opponent in Petra Podraska, 0-4, in a gross mismatch.
Cruiserweight Derrick Rossing, 3-0, threw everything he had at Slovakian Milan Checvale, 1-1, for a clear win after four, however, he just could not hurt his opponent. Checvale had a point deducted in the second and third for losing his mouthpiece repeatedly. It was scored 40-33 twice and 40-35.
In the first fight of the evening, welterweight Enock Poulsen, 3-0, stopped Spaniard Francisco Suarez, 2-4-1, who remained on his stool and did not come out for the fourth and final round. Suarez was down in the second, cut in third and was in more and more trouble, so it was a sensible retirement by his corner.
Super middle contender Patrick Nielsen returns to the ring to outpoint Beibi Berrocal over ten rounds.
Story by Per-Ake Persson
January 21 – Struer, Denmark. Sauerland Promotion opened 2017 and the Nordic Fight Night program with a show at the Arena in Struer. The event was sold out as local heroine Dina Thorslund (8-0, 5 KO’s) headlined and outclassed Xenia Jorneac (7-2, 2 KO’s) to win the vacant WBC female Youth title at super bantamweight. The 1,500 spectators cheered Thorslund’s every move as she won every round in this ten-rounder that again underlined how short female boxing is on talent. Both women are 23 years-old.
In the headliner for TV viewers, super middleweight contender Patrick Nielsen, 29-1, returned after over a year out and won a unanimous decision after ten against Colombian Beibi Berrocal, 17-4. Nielsen, who is ranked #4 by the WBA, made a good start and floored Berrocal in the second, but tired after that and the fight developed into a boring maul.
Just eleven days before the fight it was announced that Nielsen had parted ways with trainer Joey Gamache and would now be trained by his former amateur coach. Nielsen had reportedly also lost a lot of weight in a short span of time, although he still came in over the super middle limit. Word is a move up to 175 is near and a showdown against stablemate Erik Skoglund could be a good Scandinavian fight.
Talented German super middleweight Stefan Haertel moved to 13-0 and scored his first win inside the distance when Pole Tomasz Gargula, 18-5-1, was stopped on his feet in the last of a scheduled eight-rounder. Gargula was not hurt, but had taken a steady beating by the neat boxing and light punching Haertel.
Middleweight Abdul Khattab, 15-2, has long been hailed as one of the best Danish prospects and has had Mikkkel Kessler as mentor. However, come fight time it has been obvious that Khattab just could not put it together. On this show he took on Arman Torosyan, a dangerous puncher, but a limited boxer, and things went badly wrong with Torosyan winning on a sixth-round knockout.
Khattab was down in the first but came back and outboxed Torosyan at times, but could not handle the power and strength of his opponent. He was hurt in the fourth, but fought well to edge the fifth. In the sixth round, however, Torosyan´s left hook took out Abdul, who now might be at the end of his career. Torosyan fell to 18-3-1.
Super welterweight prospect Mikkel Nielsen, 2-0, won every round against German Leri Tedeev, 4-2 and super middle Leon Bunn, one of Sauerland’s new German signings, scored his second win with a first-round stoppage of Przemyslaw Bininenda from Poland.
Robert “The Nordic Nightmare” Helenius bombs out Omar Gonzalo Basile in opening frame in Helsinki, Finland knockout fight show
Story by Per-Ake Persson
December 17 -Helsinki, Finland. Dominus Boxing Group headed by Harry Savolainen with Pekka Maeki as matchmaker and boxing brain, invested heavily in what easily was the most expensive show in the Nordic countries during 2016 and entertained a good crowd at the Hartwall Arena.
The biggest name on the bill, both financially and physically, was the hometown favorite Robert “The Nordic Nightmare” Helenius, now 24-1 (15 KO’s). Unfortunately, Helenius had nothing in front of him in Argentinian Omar Gonzalo Basile, a hard to believe 68-12 (31 KO’s) and riding a 5-bout winning streak.
Basile, 42, of Buenos Aires, Argentina, was tattooed from top to toe, and was a sitting duck as Helenius, 32, opened up with both fists pumping. Omar was hurt right away and although he never really down, he was out of it from the beginning to the end and it was stopped 48 seconds into the first of this non-title 12-rounder.
It was a joke of a fight that earned Helenius well over $100,000. Next up for Robert is a fight in March perhaps with Sauerland as promoter after the two closed their contractual dispute with an agreement for two fights – but only if the “Nordic Nightmare” is happy with all the details. Swedish heavyweight Adrian Granat was at ringside to challenge Helenius. Granat holds the IBF International title and will defend it March 18 in Malmoe, Sweden, possibly against Romanian Bogdan Dinu.
In the nominal main event EBU lightweight champion Edi Tatli, 29-1 (10 KO’s), retained the title with a ninth-round stoppage of Italian challenger Manuel Lancia, 14-2-1 (3 KO’s). Lancia, 29, of Marcellina, Italy, soaked up a bad beating from the classy, neat boxing Tatli. The referee ended matters 1:57 into the ninth with Lancia badly swollen around the eye and hopelessly behind on points. Tatli, 29, of Helsinki, Finland, is world class in every department, except punching power, and it showed again here as he just could not finish off his outclassed opponent.
The third headliner ended with an outstanding come from behind victory for defending EU super middleweight champ Mariano Hilario, of Puerto Plata, DM, but now residing in Las Palmas Spain, 16-5 (7 KO’s), who took out the previously unbeaten hometown fighter Niklas Rasanen, 13-1 (8 KO’s), with a right hook 1:14 into the eleventh. The fight was began with a quiet start, but took off by the fifth with the southpaw challenger getting on top. In the ninth Hilario, 29, went down after a right to the head. Rasanen, 30, had the fight won and was well ahead on points going into the eleventh when Hilario, normally not a puncher, landed with the finisher. The gallant Rasanen got up, but was on shaky legs and it was called off.
Rasanen’s girlfriend, WBC female super featherweight queen Eva Wahlstrom (19-0-1, 3 KO’s) retained her title with ten-round unanimous decision over Argentinian challenger Anihi Esther Sanchez (14-1, 6 KO’s). Sanchez, 25, was ahead after five, but Wahlstrom, 36, came back strong to win the fight.
The undercard were all scheduled for four and Cuban-Finnish light heavyweight Dayron Lester, 7-0, stopped Serbian Ivan Jakovljevic, 1-2-1, 1:22 into the first of a mismatch. Lester has tons of experience from the amateurs and is ready to move up.
|Unbeaten light heavy contender Erik Skoglund pummels Timy Shala in 11|
Story by Per-Ake Persson
December 9 – Nykoping, Sweden. Hometown Swedish light heavyweight Erik Skoglund, 26-0 (12 KO’s), stopped Austrian Timy Shala, 21-2-1 (8 KO’s), in the eleventh round to win the vacant WBA International title in a fight that topped Sauerland Promotion’s show at the Roslunda Hall.
The fight looked headed for full distance when Skoglund suddenly opened up and floored Shala with a combination that ended with a sharp right. Shala struggled to his feet, but was hurt and a cut between the eyes worsened. Skoglund, a careful, tactical performer, sensed his opponent was finished and went for broke and second knockdown followed. The Austrian tried to hold on, however, he was a spent force and his knees dipped down again and it was stopped at 2:51 of the eleventh round. Skoglund, bleeding from three cuts after numerous head clashes, ahead after ten rounds on scores of 99-91, 97-93 and 98-93.
This show was first planned for September 28, but as Sauerland was too late with applying for longer distance with the Martial Arts Delegation, their application was turned down. The Martial Arts Law allows for 12 minute fights and for longer fights you need special permission and the law (!) demands the application to be sent in 60 days before fight date. This requirement “killed”off heavyweight Otto Wallin and his fight over ten rounds where first Newfel Ouatah, then Eugene Hill and then Nagy Aguilera were opponents.
As for Skoglund, he has been ranked #3 with the IBF for a long time now, #5 by the WBO and #9 by the WBC, but promoter Nisse Sauerland has always avoided eliminators and will do so again and Erik will not fight Artur Beterbiev. Instead, it appears that the Swede will go for the EBU title held by former WBO super middleweight king Robert Stieglitz. Skoglund is finally mandatory challenger after more or less (or being sidestepped depending on who you listen to) avoiding that also for some time. Another possibility is fighting the winner of the rematch between WBA regular champ Nathan Cleverly and ex-champ Juergen Braehmer.
In the first Swedish light heavyweight title fight since 1932, Sven Fornling, 28, of Malmo, Sweden, 11-1 (6 KO’s), outscored Naim Terbunja, 32, 10-2 (1 KO), over eight – winning on scores of 79-73 on all cards.
Terbunja, of Pristina, Kosova, but now residing in Linkoping, Swden, is promoted by STAR Boxing in the United States and announced his retirement after the fight and said his legs went dead after the first round. In the final frames, Naim looked indeed finished as he struggled to last the distance apparently exhausted – but why he was that would be interesting to know. Fornling, with reigning IBF International heavyweight champ, Adrian Granat in his corner, worked hard and dominated the fight.
Fornling’s next fight will be on March 18 at the Baliska Hallen in Malmo, Sweden against Yevgeni Makhteienko.
Naim Terbunja was one of the best Swedish amateurs in history and won a scholarship in the United States he won the National Golden Gloves and was signed with Al Haymon. However, a lengthy layoff followed as Terbunja could not get a visa and he also suffered some bad injuries and once he turned pro it was obvious something was missing.
Super middleweight Hampus Henriksson, 3-0, dropped Pole Przemyslaw Binienda, 2-9, in the first with a southpaw right hook, but had to settle with a four-round decision on scores of 40-36 twice and 39-36. Henriksson is trained and managed by Jimmy Montoya.
Two female fights rounded the card.
Boxing promotion in Aarhus, Denmark enthralls fans in attendance
By Per-Ake Persson
December 3 – Aarhus, Denmark: Super Brian Nielsen and Mogens Palle Promotion staged the all in all seventh edition of Danish Fight Night at the Ceres Arena. Headlining all shows has been super middleweight veteran Lolenga Mock, by now 44-years old and 38-14-1 (13 KO’s). Mock is currently staging a remarkable comeback – fighting seven fights over 10×3 inside a year is not very common in today’s boxing. Mock may not have beaten any world class contenders, but all opponents were solid, stand up foes and Argentinian Ruben Eduardo Acosta was no exception.
Acosta, of Mar del Plato, Buenos Aires, Argentina, was off to a good start while Mock took some time to warm up and Ruben scored with some big hooks from both hands. In the third round, however, Lolenga took over and he did it on strength, excellent conditioning and a strong will to win that overcame the signs of age that are there. Mock swept the remaining eight rounds and stunned Acosta in the eighth with a left hook. At the end it was scored 98-92, 100-90 and 99-91.
With the loss, Acosta, 38, dropped to 32-15-5 (12 KO’s).
Heavyweight Sherman “Tank”Williams, 39-15-1 (21 KO’s), of Vero Beach, FL, had no problems with Mateus Roberto Osoria, 9-3 (9 KO’s), of Carapicuiba, Sao Paulos, Brazil, and hurt him with his heavy right hand and then almost ended matters with a short right hand. Osorio, 32, got up, but Williams scored with a series of hooks to the body and it was stopped as the Brazilian went down again. It was scheduled for eight. There have been some loose talk of Williams, 44, facing Evander Holyfield in a rematch, but it appears doubtful the now 54-year old former champ would like to come back.
Pierre Madsen, 5-0 and trained by Williams, knocked out the fourth Brazilian on the card, Adilson Da Silva Santos, in the sixth and final round. Santos looked much too heavy, although he kept holding and hitting – making a street fight of it. Santos looked woefully out of shape and finally collapsed on the floor after what looked like a push and was counted out
In an all Danish matchup at super lightweight Enock Poulsen, 2-0, ended Osama Hadifi’s career with a clear win after four. The judges all had it 40-36. Hadifi, now 11-3, looked far from top shape, but fought bravely until the end and announced his retirement afterwards.
Super middleweight Daniel Heinze, 6-0, outscored experienced Brazilian southpaw Jose Hilton Dos Santos, 36-18-1, over eight. Heinze fought well and with more fights under his belt he would probably have stopped Dos Santos, but as it was he did not follow up on his advantages and the fight went the distance. It was scored 79-73 twice and 80-72.
Light heavyweight Jeppe Morell, 6-0 and trained by Lolenga Mock and Ivan De Lima, won on points over Rogerio Damasco, 19-6-1 and from Brazil, in a one sided six-rounder that ended 60-54 on all cards.
The marathon 12-fight show began at 7 PM and ended at almost 2 AM. The fans certainly got a bang for their buck!
FIGHT THRILLS AT SWEDISH BOXING CARD
Story by Per-Ake Persson
November 19 – Brandbergen, Sweden.
Heavyweight Pezhman Seifkhani headlined and moved to 5-0 with four early endings with a first-round stoppage of Georgian southpaw David Gogishvili (16-4). Pezhman was out fast and landed with a right, but Gogishvili fired back with a fine left.
“Left hook downstairs,” screamed trainer Kamran Kabinejad and Seifkhani followed orders and landed a hard hook to the liver region of Gogishvili, who went down on one knee, got up but was cleary finished. A second knockdown soon followed and it was stopped at 1:15 of the very first round.
The bout was scheduled for six. Next up for Pezhman Seifkahni is a show on February 5 in his hometown of Orebro, Sweden.
Welterweight Mohammed Saleh (4-0) stopped Bosnian Jasmin Dananovoic (3-4) 1:37 into the second after scoring three knockdowns. Saleh had been out for a year due to difficulties in getting fights.
Cruiserweight Marcus Alberts (4-0) outscored Shalva Melekishvili (11-8-1) after four messy rounds all won by Alberts, who won with his high work rate. The three judges all had it 40-36 for Alberts.
Icelandic Gunnar Kolbeinn Kristinsson (8-0) stopped Georgian Archil Gigolashvili (2-1) 1.26 into the second. Kolbeinn came in on short notice, but was in great shape after training with Robert Helenius in Finland.
Middleweight Johannes Vinasco (2-0) got an easy TKO win when Zeljko Vuksic (2-3) retired early in the first after what appeared to be an accidental clash of heads. Either way, Vuksic turned his back to the action and it was halted.
Debutant Yaffet Amaniel brought the house down as he stopped Nedzad Dzinovic, also making his debut, in the third after an action packed fight between two green fighters. Amaniel´s better schooling and conditioning won it for him as he wore down Dzinovic until it was stopped at 1:16.
Promoter Fernstrom plans to return in February for the second edition of Rising Stars.
Lolenga Mock battles Patrick Mendy in a super middleweight battle in Denmark
By Per-Ake Persson
June 4 – Copenhagen, Denmark. 44-year super middleweight Lolenga Mock, 35-14-1 (13 KO’s), won a “hard fought as always when Mock is in the ring” ten-round majority decision over the unheralded, though, tough, tricky and capable Czech licensed, Gambia born, UK based Patrick Mendy, 17-11-1 (1 KO), in the headliner of this edition of Danish Fight Nightput on by Super Brian and Mogens Palle Promotion at Fredriksberghallerne.
Mendy had the speed and moves to make it difficult for the aging Dane, who celebrated 25 years as a pro. Mock, however, is strong, tough and well conditioned and while he was outboxed in some rounds, his work rate was too much for Mendy, who spent long periods posing and dancing.
It looked as if Mock was knocked down in the fourth, but the referee ruled it a push. Mock’s strength and aggression told even more in the later rounds and while Mendy shook his head and grinned every time he was hit, he was put on the back foot and fell behind on points.
It was scored 97-93, 98-92 and an out of line 95-95.
Super middleweight Daniel Heinze, 3-0, outscored Spaniard Gonzalo Romero, 4-4, over eight, two-minute rounds and looked good doing so. Romero was kept on the ropes where he covered up well. In the last he finally opened up but it was too little too late. It was scored 79-73 twice and 80-72.
Lightweight Clark Telemanou, 5-2-1, and trained by ex champ Javier Castillejo, upset Dane Osama Hadifi, 11-2, and won a majority decision after six. Telemanou, short and stocky, came out smokin´ and shook Hadifi in the first. Osama came back in the second and scored well with counters, though, the Congo-born Spaniard closed the fight strongly and won on scores of 59-55 and 58-56 with the third card at 57-57.
Light heavyweight prospect Jeppe Morrell, 3-0, knocked out Georgian Mindia Nozadze, 18-9, at 1:27 of the second. Morrell found the range for his southpaw left in the first and floored Nozadze twice.
Super middleweight Andreas Lynggaard, 3-0, had a tough fight against Spanish southpaw Roberto Casado, 2-1-1, and was down in the fourth and badly cut in the fifth, but won a split-decision after eight on scores of 78-73 and 77-74 with 77-74 for Casado on the third. Lynggaard had problems with his timing and his opponent’s southpaw style and it made for a close, difficult to score fight that could have gone either way.
Light heavyweight Jonas Madsen, 3-0, floored Miguel Micaelo, 2-3-2, in the third and tried to follow until he walked into a counter right and went down himself. Madsen was not to be denied, though, and floored Micaelo in the fifth in a fastpaced six-rounder. It was scored 59-54 on all cards.
Cruiserweight Tobias Soerig, 3-0, got an easy win when Georgian opponent Grigol Abuladze, a claimed 24-14, retired with a claimed injured arm 15 seconds in the second.
Swedish licensed heavyweight Gunnar “The Icelandic Polar Bear” Kolbeinn Kristinsson, 6-0, knocked out Dane Kim Thomsen, 4-1, 1:52 into the second. Kolbeinn was slower, but much bigger and stronger than his opponent and he floored Thomsen late in the first.
In the second Gunnar followed by sending Thomsen back to the canvas and it was called off without a count after the second knockdown. Kolbeinn is Iceland´s only active professional fighter and only the second in history to turn pro.
Super bantamweight debutant Ali Mohamed made his debut and looked good as he stopped Malkhaz Tatrishvili, 13-10, 1:05 into the third. Tatrishvili, from the Republic of Georgia, was hurt and in trouble and made a wise move and retired himself.
In a battle of former heavyweight challengers, Kubrat Pulev pulls off a split decision win over the sturdy Dereck Chisora to capture the vacant EBU heavy title
Story by Per-Ake Persson
May 7 – Hamburg, Germany.
Bulgarian heavyweight Kubrat “The Cobra” Pulev won the vacant EBU title with a split decision over Dereck “Del Boy” Chisora after twelve in the headliner of this Sauerland Promotion show at the Barclay Arena. Pulev, now trained by Ulli Wegner, came out in his upright stance, leaning a bit on the back foot and fired sharp jabs. Chisora (25-6, 17 KO’s) looked a bit stiff, but connected with a solid overhand right in the second.
From the third on it was Pulev’s left jab and better movement that dictated the fight. Chisora worked the body of his opponent with solid left jabs of his own and Kubrat did not pick them off. Pulev (23-1, 12 KO’s) followed up on his jab with a heavy right and also caught Dereck with a right uppercut as he came in ducking. In the fifth, Pulev, of Sofia, Bulgaria, connected heavily and Chisora held on, but looked shaken and ready to go as he fought off the ropes at the end of the frame.
Chisora bravely came back in the sixth and closed the gap and connected with a heavy right late in the seventh and at the bell Pulev was dropped for the first time during the fight.
The fight was filled with wrestling on the inside as Pulev did not want to battle on the inside, and held on as they got close, while Chisora did his best to break free and punch away with both fists. Referee Manuel Oliver Palomo was slow in breaking them apart and Chisora would later state he had two opponents in the ring, but that was only partly true.
Chisora’s jab to the body was a scoring punch and the left side of Pulev´s body was red and swollen, although his conditiong was exellent and he moved well in the last round apparently sure he had done enough.
It was scored an out of line 118-110 and a more realistic 116-112 for Pulev and 115-113 for Chisora. It was an interesting fight, but it is difficult to see any of these two able to beat the best. This was also an IBF eliminator.
Pulev’s only loss was when he was KO’d in five rounds by then heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko on November 15, 2014. Since that defeat, Kubrat has won three straight bouts.
Chisora, of Finchley, London, United Kingdom, also had a shot at a Klitschko brother for a world title when he dropped a 12-round unanimous decision to then WBC heavyweight title holder Vitali Klitschko on February 18, 2012.
The undercard featured the following:
In a disgraceful joke of a fight Ismail Oezen, 166 ½ and 17-2, “stopped” Georgian Ramazi Gogichashvili, 172 1/2, 22-11, to win the GBU I/C super middleweight championship.
How Gogichashvili could compete for this title despite at that weight? Well, he surely could not.
Gogichashvili flopped over every time Oezen worked the body and it was over at 2:28 of the third. Oezen is a very wealthy businessman and had sold hundreds of tickets.
Cruiserweight Noel Gevor, 198 1/2, 21-0, outboxed Argentinian Cristian Javier Medina, 196 1/4, 12-2-3, to retain the WBO International title. It was scored 98-92 on all cards. Gevor worked well of the jab, but never opened up and it made for a dull fight.
Former WBA interim super middle champ Vincent Feigenbutz, 165 1/4, 22-2, stopped Crispulo Javier Andino, 167, 19-10-1, at 2:28 of the third of a scheduled eight-rounder. Feigenbutz, now trained by Karsten Rover, had his first fight since losing to Davide De Carolis and was careful, however, other than that looked pretty much the same. Andino was brave, but weak chinned and in over his head. He was pushed down late in the first and floored three times in the third before the mismatch was stopped.
Swedish super lightweight Anthony Yigit, 142 1/2, 17-0-1, won a close majority decision over Irishman Phillip Sutcliffe, 142 1/4, 9-1, after eight interesting rounds. It was scored 77-75 twice and 76-76. Yigit, a southpaw, is now residing in London and is trained by CJ Hussein. Sutcliffe kept stalking his opponent and nailed him the fourth and Anthony was in trouble, but fought back well. It went back and forth with both having their moments and it was as close as the scoring indicated.
Cruiserweight Arthur Mann, 199 1/4, 6-0, got a good learning fight from still tough former WBA champ Valery Brudov, 197, 43-9, over eight. Brudov was off to a slow start, so slow that he looked in danger of getting stopped, but once he warmed up, he proved to be a capable opponent, although not as good as he once was. It was scored 78-74 on all cards.
Super middleweight Stefan Haertel, 167 1/2, is now 10-0 with zero inside the distance wins, but he is a very good boxer and showed it again as he outboxed Ukrainan Ruslan Schelev, 167 1/2, 12-6, over eight. Haertel may not be a puncher, but his stiff, straight punches still gave Schelev a bad nosebleed. It was scored 80-72 on all cards.
Super Brian and Mogens Palle Promotion staged the third edition of their Danish Fight Night at the Frederiksberghall featuring a new and relatively unknown stable of fighters with veteran Lolenga “The Dane” Mock topping the bill.
Story by Per-Ake Persson
April 29 – Copenhagen, Denmark:
Lolenga, the former EBU, EU and WBO Intercontinental super middleweight champion, took on Peruvian David Zegarra, 30-1 and ranked # 5 by the WBA at super welterweight, but this fight was made at catchweight at 168 1/2 lbs and Zegarra came in above that. In the ring David proved to be capable boxer with slick moves, a good jab and a sharp left hook.
Mock, 43 and 34-14-1, who was never known for his speed and has slowed down with age, was outboxed in the first three rounds. His strength and conditioning began to tell and Zegarra, much smaller, was worn down and the rounds progressed. Lolgenga worked very hard in every session, however, he was never able to pin down his opponent and work on him. The judges had it 100-90, 98-92 and 99-91 which was generous towards the Dane, who is looking for a showdown with domestic rival Patrick Nielsen, who is promoted by Sauerland Promotion.
The fights on the bill were all scheduled for six rounds with two-minute duration. Light heavy Jonas Madsen, 3-0 and with only eight amateur fights behind him, outscored Georgian Giorgi Kandelaki, 17-17-2. Madsen is green, but shows promise and likes to mix it up, which made for an entertaining fight. Madsen won on scores of 59-55 twice and 58-56.
Heavyweight Pierre Madsen, 2-0, outscored Portuguese kickboxer Bruno Susano, 1-1. Susano only got a standing eight-count in the sixth of a brawl where Madsen, the bigger, stronger, man kept coming, even though he repeatedly walked into Susano’s left hook and was wobbled a few times. Pierre, however, continued his attack even when unsteady and was a clear winner at the end on scores of 59-54 twice and 60-52.
Super middleweight Daniel Heinze, 2-0 and regarded as the best prospect in the new stable, was almost floored in the first against Georgia Ilia Chikovani, 9-6, but was saved by the bell. In the second and onwards Heinze´s better boxing prevailed and Chikovani retired after the fourth apparently with busted eardrums. Heinze was ahead 39-37 on all cards after four.
Middleweight Mohammed Adel, 2-0, looked good as he outscored veteran Mikheil Khutitsishvili, 41-26-6. Adel outboxed his opponent in every round made him miss and made him pay. It was scored 60-54 on all cards.
Cruiserweight Tobias Soerig, 2-0, floored Portuguese debutant Alvaro Silva, 0-1, in the fourth in another well matched fight with two inexperienced boxers. Soerig was just too strong and aggressive for Silva and won on scores of 60-53 on all cards.
MMA fighter Mads Burnell turned pro with a fight at super lightweight and won on points over Goncalo Pimenta, 2-4. Burnell mixed some nice moves with bad ones and tired at the end, but won on scores of 59-55 on all cards.
Cruiser Jeppe Morell, 2-0, closed the show with a win over Georgian Shalva Melekishvili, but failed to impress. Morell, a southpaw, never found the range and it became a messy fight. This one was also scored 59-55 on all cards.
Thailand Fight Action
By Dr. Siraphop Ratanasuban
January 15 – Bangkok, Thailand. “Dangerous River” Chonlatarn Or Piriyapinyo challenged for vacant WBO Oriental Jr. Ligtweight at Merit Making Bank, Jao por siu, Bangcare district, Bangkok in M-150 OneSongchai by having Mr. Tanongsak Manotammaraksa, President of Sampeng 2 floating market, Mr. Sakchai Sakdechamanee President of Merit making bank to be chairman, female promoter Pariyakorn Ratanasuban who is best WBO female promoter for 5 years in a row.
The main event saw Chonlatarn Or Piriyapinyo, challenge for vacant WBO Oriental Jr.Lightweight against Sadiki Momba from Tanzania. The fight showed that Chonlatarn was much stronger and had the biggers and faster punches, as exchanged his fists in glorious fashion to entertain the sell-out crowd at hand. Althought the Tanzanian boy Momba, had a lion heart and fought back bravely, he could not handle the power of Chonlatarn.
By round three, the writing was on the wall, as Chonlatarn accelerated his output with a multiple of punches, eventually, and suddenly, stopping Tananian in round 3 to successfully capture WBO Oriental Jr. Lightweight title.
On the same M-150 OneSongchai promotion the following matches were fought: Kwanpichit Sibsamrien Express “Elephant fist” KO2 Ibuki Tanaka, Raknirun Dabrunsarakam won Buakaw Sor Sakulwong; Fonluang Sor Singyu won Matis Branner; and in a female bout, Yodying Super Champ won 6 over Chorfa Kietmanop, and 6 rounds female boxing Nongnoon Mor Krungthepthonburi won over Nongkratae Ukunjae.
Fight Action From Germany
Story by Per-Ake Persson
Offenbach and Berlin, Germany.