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The Past Week in Action W/E 14 June 2020

-Jesse Magdaleno beats Yenifel Vicente who is thrown out after losing four points for low blows and Adam Lopez edges out Luis Coria
-As boxing returns in Germany Jack Culcay scores comfortable decision over Howard Cospolite and prospects Marten Arsumanjan, Vincenzo Gualtieri, Jama Saidi and Artur Mann score wins
-Mariusz outpoints Kevin Johnson in the first action in Poland post the lockdown

11 June

Las Vegas, NV, USA: Super Feather: Jessie Magdaleno (28-1) W DISQ 10 Yenifel Vicente (36-5-2,1ND). Feather: Adam Lopez (14-2) W PTS 10 Luis Coria (12-3).
Magdaleno vs. Vicente
Magdaleno gets the win as he is two quick for the aggressive Vicente who suffers two knockdowns and four deductions for low punches before being thrown out in the tenth. Vicente was trying to force the fight in the first stalking the elusive Magdaleno. He managed to trap Magdaleno on the ropes but was caught by a sharp right counter to the temple and went down. It was not a heavy knockdown and Vicente was up early and easily made it to the bell. Vicente continued to chase down Magdaleno in the second and third but Magdaleno was just too quick for him. The fourth amazingly saw Vicente lose three points for low punches. Vicente had landed low a couple of time in the third and when he went low again early in the fourth the referee deducted a point. Then with just over a minute gone in the round Vicente landed a vicious low right which had Magdaleno dropping his guard and turning away and as he went down Vicente landed a hard right to the head. Magdaleno was on the floor for over two minutes with a doctor attending him. It seemed a clear case for disqualification but Magdaleno got up and the referee indicated he was deducting a point from Vicente and with all of that is was five minutes before the fight resumed. When it did Vicente attacked wildly and after yet another low punch the referee again deducted point from Vicente and Magdaleno boxed and countered his way to the end of an incident filled round which instead of being 10-9 for Magdaleno was a 10-6 round.

Magdaleno downs Vicente.

Vicente had not learned his lesson from the first round and in the fifth was wide open as Magdaleno put him down with a strong counter right jab over Vicente’s low left. Vicente continued to chase down Magdaleno but was too wild and Magdaleno was too quick and too tricky. As his frustration and desperation increased Vicente suffered another deduction when within ten seconds of the start of the last round he landed way below the belt. Vicente then connected twice more below the belt and the referee finally disqualified him. Third win over good level opposition for the former WBO champion since moving up to featherweight. He sits at No 4 in the WBO ratings behind Michael Conlan, Ryan Walsh and Carl Frampton and as the champion is fellow-Top Rank fighter Shakur Stevenson a title fight in 2021 is feasible. Dominican Vicente was 23-0-2 at one time but has found it tougher against better quality opposition and was lucky not to get thrown out of this fight long before the tenth.

Lopez and Coria in action.

Lopez vs. Coria
An excellent scrap between Lopez and Coria reminded us of what we had been missing during the lockdown as Lopez had to hold off a strong finish from Coria to take a majority decision. Coria made a fast start getting inside and outscoring Lopez. Lopez made some adjustments from the third using his better skills to pile up the points. Coria came back into the fight late as Lopez tired and busted up Lopez who had huge swellings around both eyes but Lopez had done enough over the middle rounds to just deserve the verdict. Scores 96-94 twice for Lopez and 95-95. Lopez wins the vacant NABF title. Lopez was to have fought Coria in November but instead he stepped in at just one day’s notice to tackle Oscar Valdez and save the show. Although stopped in the seventh round he had Valdez down in the second. Coria, 21, was coming off three low level wins and was in his first ten round fight. His performance here should get him plenty more assignments.

12 June

Berlin, Germany: Super Welter: Jack Culcay (28-4) W PTS 12 Howard Cospolite (18-8-3), Middle: Marten Arsumanjan (10-1-1) W RTD 7 Bjoern Schicke (16-1-1). Middle: Vincenzo Gualtieri (15-0) W PTS 10 Alexander Pavlov (10-1). Middle: Jama Saidi (17-1) W PTS 8 Jay Spencer (1-2). Cruiser: Arthur Mann (16-1) W KO 3 Rad Rashidi (18-7).
Culcay vs. Cospolite
“Golden Jack” eases himself back with a good workout against French journeyman Cospolite. The former holder of the secondary WBA super welter title was making the first defence of the WBO International title. Culcay had the better skill set and more power but at times he made it harder than it needed to be as he elected to fight inside and not use his superior boxing. One of the reasons from working inside was that despite bouncing his punches off the head of Cospolite he was not making a dent in the Frenchman’s aggression so he eventually started to target the body more. Without ever really threatening an upset Cospolite made Culcay work hard all the way. Scores 117-111, 116-110 and 116-112 for Culcay. The 34-year-old Ecuadorian-born Culcay only lost to Demetrius Andrade for the WBA title on a split decision and gave Sergey Derevyanchenko a good fight last year. He is rated in the top ten by both the IBF and WBO and another title chance is not out of question. Cospolite, 37, has lost in shots at the EBU and EU tiles but only been stopped once.
Arsumanjan vs. Schicke
A minor upset here as home team fighter Schicke losses his unbeaten tag and his EU title against fellow German Arsumanjan. The fight was even over the early rounds but the power and strength of Arsumanjan became the deciding factor. He pressured Schicke into fighting inside and began to break the unbeaten fighter down. Arsumanjan scored heavily with head shot in the sixth and Schicke’s corner retired their man at the end of the round. Schicke went to hospital just for observation. Big win for Arsumanjan who had his cousin Arthur Abraham in his corner. This was a big step up in opposition as he gets his fourth win in a row rebuilding after a shocking first round kayo loss to a fellow novice in 2018. Schicke had been carefully matched so has a recover job on his hands.
Gualtieri vs. Pavlov
Gualtieri just does enough to get by Pavlov in a desperately close fight for vacant German title. Some good early work with his jab saw Pavlov give Gualtieri some problem over the first three of rounds. Without really being totally dominant Gualtieri found his rhythm and swept the middle rounds to establish a good lead. Pavlov ate into that lead by taking the eighth and ninth to make it close but Gualtieri earned the decision with a strong last round. Scores 96-94 and 96-95 for Gualtieri and 95-95. “El Capo” has faced a mixed level of opposition and there is still room for some improvement. Pavlov was going past six rounds for the first time and had faced only some very weak opposition but he impressed here.
Saidi vs. Spencer
Saidi is just too talented for the strong but limited Spencer and outboxes him all the way. Not a big puncher Saidi never really looked like ending it early but he won every round. Scores 80-72 for Saidi from all three judges. The 26-year-old German “Hammer”, a former undefeated IBF and WBO European champion was having his first fight since putting up a creditable performance in losing a close unanimous verdict against Culcay in November. A former German kickboxing champion he has wins over experienced Sasha Yengoyan and Predrag Radosevic. Ghanaian Spencer has done all of his fighting in Germany
Mann vs. Rashid
Kazak-born German Mann makes it nine inside the distance wins with kayo of Rashid. Mann controlled the fight with his jab in the first before flooring Rashid with a combination late in the second. He ended it in the third with brutal uppercut that put Rashid down and out. The 29-year-old “Thunderman” was stopped in four rounds by Kevin Lerena in a challenge for the IBO cruiser title in March last year and this is his second win as he seeks to re-establishes himself

Konary, Poland: Heavy: Mariusz Wach (36-6) W PTS 10 Kevin Johnson (34-17-1).
Only a super optimist could have expected this fight to be entertaining. This struggle between two 40-year-old former world title challengers was a slow and dreary affair. Wach won it almost exclusively with his jab as he used his 6’7 ½” height and 82” reach to keep the 6’3” Johnson out. Johnson was a little livelier than in some of his recent performances but only just. He looked to have done enough to take the third and was competitive over the fourth and fifth but other than that he was never in the fight. Scores 99-91, 98-92 and 97-93 all for Wach as he wins the Polish International title. The big Pole hardly used his right and after the fight stated he had injured the hand but the way he is fighting now the Scandinavians should sue him over his “Viking” nickname. Over the years Johnson has fallen from 27-1-1in his first 29 fights to 7-16 in his last 23 and this is his fifth loss in a row.

Fight of the week (Significance): Both Culcay and Magdaleno showed they still have a part to play
Fight of the week (Entertainment) Adam Lopez vs. Luis Coria gave the fans a treat
Fighter of the week: Jack Culcay performed well
Punch of the week: The uppercut from Artur Mann that flattened Rad Rashid
Upset of the week: Marten Arsumanjan winning over Bjoern Schicke was not on the cards
Prospect watch: No one stood out
Observations: Obviously the absence of spectators was strange but it was also curious to see everyone except the fighters and referees wearing masks which obviously makes the strictest testing of those three for every fight important as you can’t have social distancing in the ring!

About the Author

Born in Scotland, Eric Armit started working with Boxing News magazine in the UK in the late 1960’s initially doing records for their Boxing News Annual and compiling World, European and Commonwealth ratings for the magazine. He wrote his first feature article for Boxing News in 1973 and wrote a “World Scene” weekly column for the magazine from the late 1970’s until 2004. Armit wrote a monthly column for Boxing Digest in the USA and contributed pieces to magazines in Mexico, Italy, Australia, Spain, Argentina and other countries. Armit now writes a Weekly Report covering every major fight around the world and a bi-weekly Snips & Snipes column plus occasional general interest articles with these being taken up by boxing sites around the world. He was a member of the inaugural WBC Ratings Committee and a technical advisor to the EBU Ratings Committee and was consulted by John McCain’s research team when they were drafting the Ali Act. He is a Director and former Chairman of the Commonwealth Boxing Council. Last year (2019), Armit has been nominated to the International Boxing Hall of Fame to which he said, “Being on the list is an unbelievably huge honour.”

Click here to view a list of other articles written by Eric Armit.

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