The Past Week in Action 30 November 2020: Wanheng's Longest Unbeaten Record Falls
By Eric Armit
Tue, 01 Dec 2020
Wanheng (L) loses to Pradabsri in Thailand.
- Petchmanee (Panya Pradabsri) snaps the 54-bout unbeaten run of Wanheng (Chayaphon Moonsri) to win the WBC minimumweight title.
-Joe Joyce wins the battle of Britain as Daniel Dubois is counted out in the tenth round of their heavyweight fight
-Daniel Jacobs continues his super middleweight campaign with split decision over Gabe Rosado
-Badou Jack returns to the ring with points victory over Blake McKernan
-Tony Yoka keeps busy with a points win over Christian Hammer
-Michael Magnesi wins the vacant IBO super featherweight title with stoppage of Patrick Kinigamazi
-There are wins for Emmanuel Tagoe, Daniyar Yeleussinov, Jack Catterall and Hamzah Sheeraz
World Title/Major Shows
Nakhon Sawan, Thailand: Minimum: Petchmanee (35-1) W PTS 12 Wanheng (54-0).
Wanheng (Chayaphon Moonsri) sees both his reign as WBC champion and his unbeaten record ended as he loses a very close unanimous verdict to Petchmanee (Panya Pradabsri). Petchmanee had a good game plan and he stuck to it. The challenger made a fast start attacking Wanheng with the body as his target in the first. The champion came back strongly picking his punches well and doing enough to take the second but Petchmanee upped his pace over the third and fourth again focusing on the body aiming to tire Wanheng as they went into the late rounds. After four round the scores were 39-37 for Petchmanee on two cards and the third had then even at 38-38. Petchmanee continued his surge through the fifth maintaining a fast pace and scoring again with strong shots to the body. Wanheng showed champion quality as he took the fight strongly to Petchmanee in the sixth matching Petchmanee punch for punch in a fight that was warming up into a classic battle. Petchmanee swung things back his way in an exciting seventh. With Wanheng fighting hard to hold on to his title the rounds were close but once again Petchmanee came back strongly to collar the eighth. At this point the fight was still very much in the balance with all three judges having Petchmanee in the lead at 77-75. Wanheng closed the gap by taking the ninth and despite the pace and his 35 years Wanheng still looked fresh. Petchmanee saw his lead being whittled away and he again used some ferocious body punching to win the tenth. Wanheng needed to take the eleventh to stay in the fight with a chance but he slowed slightly and Petchmanee landed enough to have the edge. Wanheng pressed hard over the first two minutes of the twelfth hunting Petchmanee down and outscoring him and despite a late surge in the round by Petchmanee Wanheng did enough to win the round but it was not enough to save his title. Scores 115-113 for Petchmanee from all three judges. Petchmanee’s only loss was a majority decision against Chinese fighter Chaozhong Xiong in China in 2017 and he had scored 16 wins since then although many of those 16 fights were just really paid sparring against novices seven of whom had never previously had a fight. This one was very close with many having Wanheng the winner and he certainly deserves a return bout. Petchmanee’s mandatory challenger (well the WBC No 1 which as Dillan Whyte can testify is not something you can rely on) is Filipino Melvin Jerusalem. Although Jerusalem lost a disputed decision to Wanheng in January 2017 he subsequently lost to 12-3-1 Joey Canoy and only beaten three very low level opponents so his WBC rating is inexplicable but there he is at No 1. Hopefully somehow justice will win out and Wanheng will get his return fight and soon. For Wanheng the loss is a double blow. He not only lost his title but also his place in the pecking order of world champions who retired undefeated. If he had retired before this title defence he would have been No 2 in the all-time list of champion who retired undefeated behind Jimmy Barry (68) but above Ricardo Lopez (52) and Floyd Mayweather Jr (50).
London, England: Heavy: Joe Joyce (12-0) W KO 10 Daniel Dubois (15-1). Super Light: Jack Catterall (26-0) W PTS 10 Abderrazak Houya (14-3). Super Welter: Hamzah Sheeraz (12-0) W TKO 10 Guido Pitto (26-8-2).Cruiser: Jack Massey (17-1) W PTS 8 Muhammad Ali Bayat Farid (16-2-1). Heavy: David Adeleye (4-0) W TKO 2 Danny Whitaker (4-2
Joyce vs. Dubois
In this battle of big punchers in the end it was a left jab that got the job done as Joyce gets a kayo win over Dubois who chose to take the count over concern for a swollen shut left eye. In the first round Joyce continually found the target with his jab and Dubois only launched an occasional attack. Dubois changed tactics in the second and came out firing punches. Joyce looked far less comfortable on the back foot and Dubois did the scoring. Dubois continued to come forward in the third and fourth but was not sustaining his attack which was allowing Joyce to get back into the fight with his jab and Joyce edged the fourth. Dubois was showing a serious swelling over his left eye from Joyce’s jabs and it was beginning to affect his vision. I had it 38-38 at this stage Joyce made a solid start to the fifth but Dubois came on late and tested Joyce’s chin with a couple of rights to the head. Dubois better speed and mobility saw him take the sixth and seventh as he again put Joyce on the back foot. Dubois left eye was now closed and he showed some anxiety over the injury. Joyce had his jab working again in the eighth and he used that almost exclusively targeting Dubois left eye. Dubois landed some rights but they just bounced off Joyce. With Dubois good work over rounds 5, 6 and 7 I had Dubois 77-75 ahead but he almost shut down in the ninth doing very little work as Joyce and worked the jab and tried some meaty rights. Early in the tenth Joyce banged home a solid left that landed smack on the left eye of Dubois who turned away from the action and knelt on the floor not willing to chance any more damage to his eye and allowed himself to be counted out. Not a great fight with the eye injury being the deciding factor and not any supremacy by either fighter. Joyce. 35, now owns the British, European, Commonwealth, WBC Silver and WBO International titles so will have to spend some of his purse money on a new trophy cabinet. He was rated WBC 11/WBO 11/IBF 13 with Dubois WBO 2 and WBC 7. Joyce will now move into the No 2 spot with the WBO behind Olek Usyk so if Anthony Joshua retains his titles against Kubrat Pulev Joyce will be right in line for a shot at the Joshua vs. Usyk winner or against Usyk for the vacant WBO title. I felt that Dubois made a sensible decision. He is only 23 so can obviously come again and this was his first experience of dealing with such a potentially threatening injury and with his vision so badly affected things were only going to get worse in the fight.
Catterall vs. Houya
Houya tried to put Catterall under pressure early but Catterall camped in the centre of the ring and used his southpaw jab, some clever movement and hard lefts to boss the action. Heads clashed in the fourth but luckily neither fighter was cut. Houya always stayed competitive looking to attack but Catterall was getting his punches off first and outboxing Houya. Catterall had been finding the target regularly with his left and near the end of the sixth a left hook sent Houya down on his back. He was hurt but made it to his feet and to the bell. Houya was rocked again in the seventh but was still willing to trade with Catterall even if he was not having much success. A left from Catterall floored Houya again in the ninth. Catterall tried hard to put Houya away but the Tunisian boxed his way through the remainder of the ninth and was still fighting strongly at the end of the tenth. Referee’s score 99-90 for Catterall. Houya provided exactly the kind of fight that Catterall needed after a year without of forced inactivity. The 27-year-old from Chorley is No 1 with the WBO with his best wins being against domestic opposition in Ohara Davies and Tyrone McKenna. He is the mandatory challenger to Jose Carlos Ramirez but with a unification match against Josh Taylor easily the biggest fight in the division how so Catterall’s chance might come is difficult to say. French-based Houya, a former undefeated ABU champion, did his job well but has now suffered consecutive losses having lost a wide points verdict against Spaniard Jon Fernandez in December.
Sheeraz vs. Pitto
Sheeraz makes successful defence of the WBO European title with late stoppage of Argentinian Pitto. At 6’3” tall Sheeraz was just too much to tall and had too much of a reach advantage for Pitto. Sheeraz showed a strong jab and mixed his punches well to head and body. Over the first half of the fight he dominated the action constantly switching guards unnecessarily but he connected with some sweet hooks and uppercuts. Pitto kept marching forward bobbing and weaving and pumping out punches and over the sixth, seventh and eighth outworked Sheeraz. The ninth saw Sheeraz come to life again and he finished the fight in the tenth. A thunderous right sent Pitto staggering into the ropes and Sheeraz blasted away until the referee stopped the fight. Eighth inside the distance win for the 21-year-old Sheeraz who shows plenty of promise. Barcelona-based Pitto won and lost in fights against Jack Culcay and lost to Zaurbek Baysangurov for the vacant IBO super welter title in 2014 but is on the slide now being 1-4-1 in his last 6 fights.
Massey vs. Farid
Massey comfortably boxes his way to victory over a limited Bayat. Massey had lots of reach over Bayat and was content to box on the back foot piercing Bayat’s guard with stiff jabs and adding in occasional straight rights. Bayat was not quick enough to put Massey under any serious pressure. Bayat tried to weave his way inside but just never really found a way past Massey’s jab often enough to give Massey any problems. Massey went on the front foot a bit more over the seventh and eighth but never looked as though he wanted to finish this one early being glad to get in the ring time. Referee’s score 79-74. Massey, 27, a former ABA champion lost a very close verdict to Richard Riakporhe for the vacant title in December so he may build towards a return fight or aim for Commonwealth champion Chris Billiam Smith who he beat in the ABA final. Bayat a Dubai-based Iranian had been carefully under matched with 13 of his victims only managing 15 wins between him and the other three having poor records also.
Adeleye vs. Whitaker
Adeleye continues to show promise as he easily disposes of Whitaker. An uneventful first round saw Adeleye shadowing Whitaker around the ring probing with his jab and trying a few rights. Whitaker was in reverse gear and showing no real aggressive intent. Adeleye got down to business in the second hurting Whitaker with a right the dropping him with a left hook. Whitaker made it to the vertical but dropped again under a series of punches one of which landed when Whitaker’s knee touched the canvas. The referee warned Adeleye and gave Whitaker a chance to recover but Whitaker when he got up walked to a corner and his team indicated they wanted the fight stopped. The 24-year-old Londoner has won his four fights by KO/TKO taking less than eight rounds to do so. He won ABA titles at Novice, Senior Novice and Senior levels and at the British Universities Championships. He is a university graduate with a BA in Business Management with a dissertation on management in boxing. It is early days but he is another young English boxer to make a note of. Whitaker was carrying too much weight at 260lbs and was in way over his head.
Hollywood, FL, USA: Super Middle: Daniel Jacobs (37-3) W PTS 12 Gabriel Rosado (25-13-1,1ND). Light: Emmanuel Tagoe (32-1) W PTS 10 Mason Menard (36-5). Heavy: Mahammadrasul Majidov (3-0) W TKO 3 Sahret Delgado (8-1). Welter: Daniyar Yeleussinov (10-0) W TKO 2 Julius Indongo (23-3).
Jacobs vs. Rosado
If a fighter is only as good as his last fight then Daniel Jacobs is in trouble. He managed to eke out a very close split decision over Gabe Rosado in a disappointing flat performance. Rosado just did enough to edge a slow opening round but then Jacobs came to life and outscored Rosado over the second and third. Rosado was the one forcing the fight but Jacobs had a good fourth as he constantly pierced Rosado’s guard with his jab and landed some good rights. It might have been expected that Jacobs would kick-on from there but the pace of the fight was slow, Jacobs punch output dropped and Rosado pressed hard to take a low-action fifth. Jacobs came back into the fight over the sixth and seventh and connected with some good body punches. Rosado had a higher work rate but less accuracy and Jacobs should have been dominating this fight but seemed to mentally dip in and out of the action. Jacobs had built a lead but faded out again over the ninth and tenth rounds that saw very little activity. With Rosado taking those two rounds the fight was poised and just when he needed to put in a big effort Jacobs hardly worked at all in the eleventh. Despite how close the fight was neither fought with the expected passion in the last and Jacobs just did enough to take it and the decision. Scores 115-113 twice for Jacobs and 115-113 for Rosado. As if losing by such a narrow margin was not enough agony for Rosado the announcer messed up and started to announce the winner “from Philadelphia” which was Rosado’s home but then corrected his error confirming the winner came from Brownsville-if there was a winner in this fight. Jacobs admitted he had approached the fight as a sparring session and nearly paid the price. He is rated WBO 3/WBC 5/WBA 5/IBF 9(7) and is much better than he showed in this fight. He was at 167 ½ lbs tonight so may decide to stay at super middle but with Saul Alvarez already booked to fight Callum Smith there is not much to attract him in this division in the near future. Rosado, 34, deserves credit for running Jacobs so close. He had lost important fights against Willie Monroe, Martin Murray and Maciej Sulecki and was No 11 middle with the WBC but running Jacobs this close could get him some more useful paydays.
Tagoe vs. Menard
In his first fight in the USA for six years Tagoe takes a majority decision over Menard. Styles dictated tactics here with the smart boxing Tagoe using clever movement and fast hands to outbox the ever aggressive Menard. Tagoe was shooting quick but light jabs and then firing some cracking counters. Menard was marching forward looking to get close where he could work on the body to slow the Ghanaian but Tagoe was doing some holding inside to stifle Menard’s work and was warned for that in the fourth. Menard’s task was not made any easier by cut over his left eye which hampered his vision later but it did not deter the Louisiana fight from continuing to roll forward. Both scored well over the middle rounds with Tagoe establishing a lead with some crisp right counters and rocked Menard in the eighth with a right. Tagoe then seemed to take his foot off the gas and Menard came on strong over the ninth and tenth to make it close. Scores 98-92 and 96-94 for Tagoe and 95-95. Tagoe, 31, is a former undefeated IBO champion and after losing his first paid fight he has put together a 32 bout winning streak. His opposition has been mainly experienced but aging fighters on the way down but now he is in the USA the level of that opposition should improve. He is No 5 with the WBO but there are some very good fighters ahead of him in the queue for a shot at Teo Lopez. “Rock Hard Mighty” Menard from Rayne has been in some tough fights suffering a brutal KO loss against Ray Beltran, a stoppage loss against Devin Haney and a 44 second blow away defeat against Lopez. He went back home and scored two wins in 2019 now he has to decide whether to stick with small money winnable fights back home or big money big risk fights
Majidov vs. Delgado
Madijov obliterates poor Delgado. An uninspiring start saw Delgado engage reverse gear and stick with it. Majidov was tracking him around the ring connecting with a few jabs until the end of the round when a succession of head punches had Delgado shaky. It was one-way traffic again in the second with Majidov landing heavy jabs bringing blood from Delgado’s nose and catching him with a variety of shots to head and body. Delgado decided to attack in the third and landed a couple of left hooks. A left from Majidov made Delgado stumble and then Majidov drove him to the ropes and landed three heavy rights to the head that had Delgado virtually out on his feet as the referee jumped in to stop the fight. The 34-year-old Russian-born Azeri has won his three fights inside the distance. He won gold medals at both the 2011 and 2013 World Championships stopping Erislandy Savon and beating Ivan Dychko and Anthony Joshua in 2011 and won a bronze medal at the London Olympics. At 6’3” he is not big by today’s standard but he very mobile and a good puncher. It was some time before Delgado recovered and as for his conditioning he is also 6’3” but weighed 70lbs more than Madijov!
Yeleussinov vs. Indongo
In a clash of southpaws Kazak Yeleussinov blows away Indongo in two rounds. After an opening exchange of jabs Yeleussinov rocked Indongo with a left uppercut and as they traded punches later in the round a short left hook dumped Indongo on his rump. He got up and survived to the bell. Indongo tried to work with his jab in the second but two rights to the head put him on the floor and although he made it to his feet he walked away from the referee indicating he wanted no more. This was for the vacant IBF Inter-Continental title and marks the first title as a pro for former Rio gold medallist and World Amateur Champion. Yeleussinov beat Josh Taylor, Jamal Herring and Josh Kelly in the amateurs but has so far travelled under the radar as a pro but at 29 now needs to move along. Namibian Indongo, a former WBA and IBF champion, looked the goods when he knocked Eduard Troyanovsky cold and outclassed Ricky Burns but quick losses to Terrence Crawford and Regis Prograis brought a touch of reality to his record and at 37 he does not look to have any future. In boxing.
Nantes, France: Heavy: Tony Yoka (9-0) W PTS 10 Christian Hammer (25-7). Heavy: Viktor Vykhryst (5-0) W PTS 6 Kamil Sokolowski (10-20-2).
Yoka vs. Hammer
Yoka outpoints Hammer in a disappointing fight and also suffers a hand injury. Yoka used his longer reach to slot jabs home and land long rights. Hammer was rumbling forward behind a high guard but Yoka was tying him up inside. Hammer came charging out in the second swinging wide punches and their heads banged together with Hammer suffering a cut over his right eye. Yoka continued to score at distance and Hammer was trying to rough Yoka up inside. The pattern did not change much in the third and fourth with Yoka still able to find gaps for his jab and long rights to the head but there was too many clinches for the fight to be entertaining. Hammer was given a warning at the start of the fifth for wrestling Yoka to the canvas. The Romanian showed a little more fire but Yoka was still the one doing the scoring. Hammer did better in the sixth throwing more and landing some hooks but he was deducted a point for hitting on the break. Yoka was given a warning for a butt at the start of the seventh another round with too much wrestling and too little fighting. Yoka was still picking up points at distance and looked good when he did put his punches together but it was a poor fight. Hammer walked away from the action at the start of the eighth complaining of another butt but the referee ignored him. Things livened up for a short while as they both had some success but again it descended into a holding and wrestling competition and the ninth and tenth were equally uneventful . Scores 100-89 for Yoka from the three judges. Yoka gets another win but he never seemed to get out of second gear and showed little fire against an awkward opponent but it was reported that he had suffered a fracture of his hand which may have affected his performance and will mean the cancellation of his fight for the EU title against Peter Milas which it was hoped to stage in December. He won gold medals at the World Championships and the Rio Olympics and beat both Filip Hrgovic and Joe Joyce in both competitions so the quality is there but he is not showing it yet in the pros. Hammer had used his strength to beat down both Erkan Teper and David Price. He is very crude and limited but strong and he has taken both Alexander Povetkin and Luis Ortiz the distance.
Vykhryst vs. Sokolowski
Vykhryst gets some useful ring time as he decisions Pole Sokolwski. The 6’5” Ukrainian was 5” taller than Sokolwski and showed a strong jab and power in his straight rights. He is quite mobile for his size and mixed his punches well but there are still some rough edges to be smoothed out. Sokolowski persisted in trying to get inside but had very little success and a series of punches ending with a left hook floored him late in the third. Vykhryst continued to land well and rocked Sokolowski with a big right cross in the fifth but Sokolwski kept bouncing back and made Vykhryst work hard for the whole six rounds testing Vykhryst’s chin with a right cross in the last. Scores 60-53 on all three cards for Vykhryst. He lost to Joe Joyce at both the European Olympic qualifiers for Rio and in the WSB where he was knocked out in two rounds but the 28-year-old European Championships and European Games gold medal winner is certainly one to watch. British-based Pole Sokolowski has only lost by KO/TKO three times and two of those were against Dillan Whyte and Nathan Gorman and he showed a good chin here.
Fondi, Italy: Super Feather: Michael Magnesi (18-0) W TKO 5 Patrick Kinigamazi (32-3).
Local fighter Magnesi wins the vacant IBO title as he floors Rwandan Kinigamazi twice on the way to a fifth round victory. Magnesi set a fast pace in the opening round. He was walking in behind a high guard looking to get close and land with left hooks and uppercuts. Kinigamazi was boxing on the back foot almost exclusively with his left jab but not being able to keep Magnesi out. Magnesi stepped up his attacks in the second switching guards and getting through with hooks and uppercuts from both hands. Kinigamazi switched to southpaw and was landing some hard counters but Magnesi was either blocking or ignoring them. Kinigamazi tried to stand and punch with Magnesi in the third but the ferocity of Magnesi’s attacks had him retreating and short straight right sent him into the ropes and down. He bounced up quickly and then stayed off the ropes and out of corners as he boxed his way to survival. The fourth was a great round as Kinigamazi decided to stand and exchange punches with Magnesi. It was punch for punch and if Kinigamazi had more power he might have turned the fight his way but terrific body punches from Magnesi were taking their toll. Magnesi was hounding Kinigamazi in the fifth and rocked him a number of times. Kinigamazi tried to come forward but was met with a stunning short right hook that sent him crashing to the floor. He made it to his feet but wobbled a bit and the referee waived the fight over. An impressive all-action display by 26-year-old Magnesi and the tenth inside the distance win an fifth in a row. He is a former undefeated Italian champion was Italian Youth champion and was part of the Italia Thunder team in the WSB. He was rated No 5 by the EBU. No big names on his record but those should follow now that he has the IBO title. First loss by KO/TKO for the 37-year-old Swiss-based Kinigamazi a former WBFederation champion who had won his last 14 fights but proved underpowered here.
Culiacan, Mexico: Light Heavy: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr (52-5-1) W TKO 4 Jeyson Minda (14-3-1). Super Bantam: Karim Arce (18-0-2) W PTS 10 Jesus Carlon (9-8-2).
Chavez returns home to Culiacan to try to kick start his career yet again. Chavez was crowding Minda and getting through with left hooks to the body. Minda managed to give Chavez a bloody nose but lost the round. Chavez’s pressure paid off in the second as he dropped Minda with a barrage of punches just before the bell but Minda beat the count. Minda had a good spell in the third scoring with hooks and uppercuts but was soon under fire again. He dropped to one knee under a shower of punches and the bell went as Minda got up. A right to the head floored Minda in the fourth and the Ecuadorian’s corner waived the towel to end the fight. Chavez had looked poor in losing a technical points decision against novice Mario Cazares and a blonde rinse can’t cover the fact that he has gone back a long way. He is under temporary suspension in both Nevada and Arizona and should not have been allowed to fight here. Minda was suffering his third inside the distance loss in his last four fights.
Arce vs. Carlon
In his first ten round fight Arce gets a unanimous decision over Carlon but there were concerns over Arce after the fight. Despite his indifferent record Carlon gave Arce a very tough night flooring and having Arce in trouble in the first. Arce held on and survived and these two then put on a great fight matching the heavier punching of Arce against the higher output of Carlon. In the end the judges gave Arce the decision and both were heavily applauded. Arce then complained of a fierce headache, dizziness and vomiting and he was taken to a local clinic but no update available at this time.
La Calera, Argentina: Feather: Mayco Estadella (8-0-1) W PTS 10 Reuquen Arce (12-3-2).
Estadella comfortably outpoints Arce to win the interim national title. Arce jumped into the attack from the first bell but southpaw Estadella avoided the early rushes and began to find the range with his right jab. Arce continued to press but Estadella was controlling the pace of the fight with his jab and slotting home straight lefts. Arce had a good fourth round but much of his early fire had gone and Estadella handed out plenty of punishment in the fifth. There was nothing spectacular in Estadella’s work as he fed Arce a diet of right jabs and straight lefts with the occasional body shot and from the eighth he dominated the fight with Arce mostly on the back foot and under fire. Scores 99-92 ½, 98 ½, 98-93 ½ for the “Little Lion” from Villa Maria as he enters the ten round class for the first time. Arce, the Argentinian No 1 at super feather, was 11-0-2 going into this and a slight favourite
Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania: Super Feather: Ibrahim Class (24-6) W PTS 10 Simon Ngoma (6-2).
Southpaw Class (Ibrahim Mgender) retains the Global Boxing Council title with unanimous decision over Zambian Ngoma. This was not an easy fight for Class. Ngoma had a big edge in height and he came to fight. Class was under severe pressure at times but Ngoma had poor footwork a not much of a defence. Class scored two flash knockdowns and constantly found the target with rights to the head. Ngoma’s attacks were wild and uncoordinated but he threw plenty of punches with enough getting through to rock Class once or twice. The very slippery canvas saw both boxers sliding to the floor on numerous occasions. The better skills of Class made the difference here. Scores 98-88 twice and 95-91. Class put together a run of eight victories but then suffered back-to-back inside the distance defeats against Azinga Fuzile and Eduardo Hernandez. Ngoma had won his last four fights.
Lagos, Nigeria: Bantam: Habeeb Oladeji (1-1) W PTS 10 Tunde Olojede (3-2). Light: Rilwan Oladosu (14-0) W PTS 8 Prince Nwoye (3-4). ). Super Light: Olaide Fijabi (13-0) W TKO 4 Dennis Mbat (0-9). Welter: Rilliwan Ayodele Babatunde (12-0) W TKO 2 Jubril Olalekan (0-2
Oladeji vs. Olodeji
In the fourth show of the year in Nigeria Oladeji wins the national bantamweight title with a split decision over Olojede
Oladosu vs. Nwoye
“Real One” Oladosu, 28, the West African champion remains unbeaten with a clear unanimous verdict over substitute Nwoye
Fijabi vs. Mbat
Fijabi returns to action for the first time since December 2018 and stops a competitive Mbat in four rounds. Fijabi is a former unbeaten ABU champion and has seven wins by KO/TKO
Babatunde vs. Olalekan
Tall welterweight “Baby Face” Babatunde, 24, the West African champion, halts Olalekan for his fourth inside the distance win in a row.
Gabarone, Botswana: Super Bantam: Onkarabile Mothibedi (4-2) W PTS 12 Tshepang Babui (3-4-2).
Mothibedi wins the vacant WBFoundation International title with unanimous decision over fellow-Botswanan Babui. This was a bit of a bizarre fight with Mothibedi being 5’” 11” and Babui 5’3 ½”. Some of the attraction was taken out of the fight when Babui failed to make the weight coming in 4kgs too heavy. Mothibedi used his jab to move ahead over the early rounds but Babui began to take control from the fifth and ate into Mothibedi’s lead. Mothibedi rallied over the closing rounds and was a good winner. He claimed that he had slowed his work rate over those middle rounds as he had never been past six rounds before and wanted to pace himself. Babui had lost to South African Tholumusa Ngema for this title in April last year.
Los Angeles, CA, USA: Cruiser: Badou Jack (23-3-3) W PTS 8 Blake McKernan (13-1). Light Jermaine Ortiz (14-0) W KO 7 Suliman Segawa (13-3-1).Heavy: Joe Cusumano (19-3) W KO 6 Gregory Corbin (15-4,1ND). Feather: Edward Vazquez (9-0,1ND) W PTS 8 Irvin Gonzalez (14-3
Jack vs. McKernan
Jack gets in eight rounds of work against inexperienced McKernan. Jack was on the front foot tracking down a retreating McKernan all the way. Jack was sparing with his punches but he had a high accuracy with those he was throwing. McKernan tried a bit of aggression now and then. Jack connected with some hard right crosses in the third but McKernan took them well. Jack went to the body more over the fifth and sixth but was generally satisfied with landing a couple of punches but not putting together any substantial combinations. Jack finally cut loose in the eighth driving McKernan around the ropes connecting with heavy rights to the head and digging in body punches but McKernan absorbed the punishment and was still there at the final bell. All three judges had it 80-72 for Jack. The 37-year-old former WBC super middle and holder of the secondary WBA light heavyweight title was 188 ¾ lbs and was having his first fight since losing a split decision against Jean Pascal for the secondary WBA title. He is still rated WBC 5/WBA 13 at light heavyweight. McKernan, 33, was only really required to give Jack some ring time and he did that and no more.
Ortiz vs. Segawa
Ortiz floors Segawa twice for stoppage. Ortiz was using plenty of movement and flashing jabs with Segawa coming forward applying pressure but a bit slower than the flashy Ortiz. As Ortiz upped his pace from the third Segawa was finding Ortiz speed and clever defensive work a big problem. Segawa had a good fifth as he connected with some heavy rights but by the sixth Ortiz was back in control with his fast jabs and in the seventh a tiring Segawa went down from a left hook to the body. Initially when he got up Segawa took out his mouthguard but then put it back in and tried to continue but slumped to the canvas under another attack and the fight was stopped. Ortiz wins the vacant WBC US title. In the amateurs he was New England Golden Gloves champion but lost out to Gary Antuanne Russell at the US Trials and missed out on the 2016 Olympic Games. First loss by KO/TKO for Segawa who coincidentally failed to win his way through the African Trials for Rio.
Cusumano vs. Corbin
Cusumano wins the vacant WBC US title with stoppage of Corbin. The 32-year-old Virginian has scored 17 of his 19 wins by KO/TKO but in a previous shot at this title in August last year he was floored and outpointed by Steve Vukosa. Fourth loss in a row for 40-year-old Corbin.
Vazquez vs. Gonzalez
Vazquez wins a split decision over Gonzalez in the best fight on the card. These two went to war all the way with never much between them but in the end the superior movement and hand speed just gave Vazquez a slight edge. Texan Vazquez has won his last eight fights and Gonzalez his last two.
Tokyo, Japan: Feather: Musashi Mori (12-0) W TKO 11 Tsuyoshi Tameda (21-6 -2).
Japanese prospect Mori overcomes a slow start to get late stoppage of Tameda. Tameda made the early running. He set a fast pace with a high work rate and plenty of pressure. He was in front on two cards after the first four rounds but had used up plenty of energy. In the fourth southpaw Mori began to come forward more and connect with straight lefts and uppercuts. Tameda bounced back to have a good eighth and the fight was in the balance with the judges all disagreeing with each other at 76-76, 78-74 for Tameda which looked too generous and 77-75 for Mori. From the ninth Mori dominated the action and a straight left opened a cut over the right eye of Tameda who survived a doctor’s inspection. Mori piled on the punishment until the referee stepped in to save Tameda in the eleventh round. The 20-year-old cherubic-featured Mori was making the third defence of the WBO Asia Pacific title and in the WBO world where sanctioning fees count more than the quality of the opposition he is No 4 in their ratings. He made a remarkable recovery from the time when he was 13 and a car ran into the back of him leaving him with a broken hip and two broken legs. He recovered so quickly that he was Japanese Under 15 champion in 2011 and 2014 and turned pro At 17. He was All Japan Rookie King an annual tournament for Japanese fighters in their first year as pros. Tameda suffers his fourth inside the distance defeat but he gave Mori a tough test.
Bangkok. Thailand: Super Light: Sangarthit (10-0) W Atchariya (13-0).
Thai teenager Sangarthit (Phoobadin Yoohanngoh) retains the WBA Asian title with stoppage of Atchariya. Still only 16, he will be 17 in January, Sangarthit showed real maturity here has he boxed conservatively early and then crushed Atchariya. The challenger had the longer reach and used that to put Sangarthit on the back foot and showed good hand speed testing Sangarthit’s chin with some quick rights. The champion boxed cleverly on the retreat firing quick accurate counters that had the effect of slowing the challenger. Sangarthit showed some classy defensive skills in the fifth before coming forward taking the fight to Atchariya. At the start of the sixth Sangarthit ducked under a couple of punches from Atchariya then came up an over with a right to the side of the head that sent Atchariya sprawling on the canvas. Sangarthit turned tiger and had Atchariya stumbling around the ring before putting him down with a right. Another right brought the third knockdown with the referee immediately waiving the end to the fight. Fifth inside the distance for Sangarthit and the first defence of his title. He turned pro at 14 and shows tremendous potential. Atchariya was considered a prospect a couple of years back and he had met better opposition but had no answer when Sangarthit cut loose
Luis Guillon, Argentina: Light: Claudio Daneff (11-1-1,1ND) W PTS 10 Agustin Kucharski (6-2-1).
Argentinian No 3 Daneff overcomes the longer reach of the 6’0” tall Kucharski to forge a victory. Southpaw Daneff was much the better technical boxer and worked his way inside to attack the body of Kucharski. The taller man landed some good counter hooks but Daneff’s accurate work and harder punch gave him a big edge and Kucharski had to take on board quite a bit of punishment and never really managed to threaten Daneff’s dominance. Scores 98-92 twice and 97-93 for Daneff/ He wins the vacant WBC Latino title having won the same title last year at lightweight. Although short on experience Kucharski had turned in a good performance in drawing with 17-0 Hugo Roldan in December.
Junin, Argentina: Middle: Abraham Buonarrigo (7-0) W Luis Vera (10-16-2).
Buonarrigo gets the win but in a bizarre ending. Buonarrigo the bigger and stronger man had taken the first three rounds and was putting pressure on Vera in the fourth. Vera threw a counter which missed and then just knelt with one knee on the canvas. He got up but whilst the referee was giving him the eight count Vera then began arguing with someone outside the ring and then with the referee showing no inclination to fight on and the referee stopped the fight with Vera still arguing. Buonarrigo was in his first fight scheduled for ten rounds and gets his seventh win by KO/TKO. He is Argentinian No 2 super middleweight. Four inside the distance losses in a row for Vera who could face some disciplinary action.
Brisbane, Australia: Super Light: Justin Frost (11-1-1) W PTS 10 Waylon Law (12-7).
Frost regains the Australian title with majority decision over Law in a hard-fought very close contest. When these two clashed in September Law won a split decision and took Frosts title and his unbeaten tag so sweet revenge for Frost. Scores 98-92 and 97-93 for Frost and 95-95. Law seems to specialise in close fights as six of his contests have ended in a majority decision and three in a split decision.
Mexicali, Mexico: Super Welter: Jorge Paez Jr (41-13-2,1ND) W KO 4 Christian Solano (28-26-4).
Paez stops Solano in four rounds in a clash of two fighters badly in need of a win. Solano was 6” taller than Paez with a much longer reach but it did him no good as Paez just walked through Solano’s weak jab and beat Solano around the ribs. Paez was all over Solano pumping home body punches. Solano went down in the third complaining of a punch to the back of the head. Later in the round a vicious left hook to the body finished Solano. He went down on one knee and stayed there as the referee counted out the ten. The 32-year-old Paez had lost 6 of his last 7 fights and this will probably be just a stop on the way further down. Solano, 39, has won only one of his last 10 fights.
Fight of the week (Significance): Joe Joyce’s win over Daniel Dubois puts him firmly in the mix at heavyweight and could see him fight for the heavyweight title in 2021.
Fight of the week (Entertainment);Pechmanee’s win over long time WBC minimumweight champion Wanheng was twelve rounds of all out action as Wanheng fought bravely to try to hold on to his title.
Fighter of the week: Petchmanee for beating a champion who was undefeated in 54 fights with honourable mention to Joe Joyce for his big win over Daniel Dubois.
Punch of the week: The short right hook from Michael Magnesi that finished Patrick Kinigamazi was a beauty
Upset of the week: Petchmanee was an outsider against Wanheng
Prospect watch: Japanese featherweight Musashi Mori 12-0 shows promise and I will watch Thai 16-year-old hope Sangarthit 10-0 a bit longer before committing myself.
A pity to see Wanheng taking that one fight too many. If he had retired he would have had that meritorious second place in the all-time ranking of world champions who retired undefeated with the most fights. Not only that but 54 is not good enough to get him into the top ten of:
A) Fighters with the longest unbeaten run at the start of their career but lost subsequent fights.
B) Fighters with the longest unbeaten run at any time in their career
Amateur fights seem to be coming back to “haunt” the top heavyweights. In recent months we have had a Russian who knocked out Deontay Wilder, a Pole who beat Daniel Dubois and this weekend Mahammadrasul Majidov who beat Anthony Joshua now if we can just get Max Babanin to turn pro we will have someone who beat Tyson Fury
Seems like we have regressed on the highly technical science of binding a glove. In the Tony Yoka vs. Christian Hammer fight Yoka’s tape came loose three times in the space of a couple of rounds. The tape being used looked about as broad as my thumb. It causes a halt in the action and could even cause injury if it snapped into a boxers eye. Nevada has solved it and Britain has solved it so why can’t France do so?
It’s a strange world when a 5’11” Onkarabile Mothibedi makes the weight for a super bantam bout and his opponent 5’3 ½” Tshepang Babui come in 4 kgs overweight. You would have expected the 5’11” boxer to be the one to struggle.
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. Armit has been nominated to the International Boxing Hall of Fame the past two years (2019 and 2020) to which he said, “Being on the list is an unbelievably huge honour.”
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