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The Past Week in Action 9 July 2024: Shakur Outpoints Harutyunyan; Conceicao in Controversial Win Over Foster; Martinez Defeats Ioka; Zepeda KOs Cabrera


PhilBoxing.com





Highlights:
-Shakur Stevenson retains the WBC lightweight title with points win over Artem Harutyunyan
-Robson Conceicao wins the WBC super featherweight title with controversial split decision over champion O’Shaquie Foster and there are wins for Keyshawn Davis and brother Kelvin
- IBF super flyweight champion Fernando Martinez scores a unanimous decision over WBA champion Kazuto Ioka to unify the two titles
- Unbeaten lightweight William Zepeda goes to 31-0 with third round kayo of Giovanni Cabrera and Ricardo Sandoval stops Angel Acosta in the tenth round
- Shane Mosley Jr outpoints Daniel Jacobs
- Reece Bellotti makes a successful defence of the Commonwealth super feather title with points won over Levi Giles and English heavyweight hope John Fisher destroys Alen Bobick inn 36 seconds

Major Shows

July 6

Newark, NJ, USA: Light: Shakur Stevenson (22-0) W PTS 12 Artem Harutyunyan (12-2). Super Feather: Robson Conceicao (19-2-1,1ND) W PTS 12 O’Shaquie Foster (22-3) . Light: Keyshawn Davis (11-0,1ND) W PTS 10 Miguel Madueno (31-3). Super Feather: Eridson Garcia (19-1) W PTS 10 William Foster III (17-2,1ND) W. Welter: Kelvin Davis (13-0) W PTS 8 Kevin Johnson (12-4).Light: Abdullah Mason (14-0) W TKO 3 Luis Lebron (20-6-1). 



Stevenson vs. Harutyunyan
Stevenson outclasses an overmatched Harutyunyan
Round 1
Both were throwing jabs but not committing themselves so coming up short. Harutyunyan was coming forward with Stevenson just biding his time. Harutyunyan darted in with a couple of punches that landed but lightly but it was enough to give him a low activity round. 
Score: 10-9 Harutyunyan
Round 2
Harutyunyan was coming forward and connected with a couple of glancing shots. Stevenson was still in study mode slipping and sliding away from Harutyunyan’s punches and avoiding being trapped against the ropes or in corners but not throwing much. Again, a low activity round with Harutyunyan just having a very slight edge but both rounds could have been scored either way.
Sciore: 10-9 HarutyunyanHarutyunyan 20-18
Round 3
Harutyunyan launched a couple of attacks but in a change Stevenson was now on the front foot slotting lefts though Harutyunyan’s guard and connected with a couple of body shots to take another low scoring round 
Score: 10-9 StevensonHarutyunyan 29-28
Round 4
Stevenson upped his pace piercing Harutyunyan’s guard with lefts to the head. Harutyunyan was still trying to take the fight to Stevenson but Stevenson was blocking Harutyunyan’s punches and countering with lefts. 
Score: 10-9 StevensonTIED 38-38
Round 5
Harutyunyan was throwing lots of punches but Stevenson was blocking them or swaying away and coming back with left counters. Harutyunyan needed to be on the front foot but accurate counters from Stevenson were forcing him to back up. Stevenson was scoring with right jabs and straight lefts and landed a couple of body punches.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 48-47
Round 6
Stevenson stood off as Harutyunyan fired lots of punches. A couple got through but then Stevenson was again on target with his jab and straight lefts and landed a good body shot. Harutyunyan fired a series of punches but Stevenson blocked them and landed two lefts. Harutyunyan tried to work his way inside but was forced back by hooks before rebound with a series of hooks. Stevenson’s round but the hard work put in by Harutyunyan made it close.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 58-56
Round 7
Stevenson’s hand speed and accuracy were dominating the fight constantly forcing Harutyunyan back. He landed a couple of short right hooks then drove a straight right through Harutyunyan’s guard. He stayed on top of Harutyunyan forcing him back with jabs then landing lefts.
Score: 10-9 Stevenson Stevenson 68-65
Round 8
Stevenson was on the front foot again. With his quick reflexes he was able to stand in the pocket simply swaying away from Harutyunyan’s punches and then just sway forward and be in position to land his jabs and lefts. Harutyunyan was consistently on the back foot and only fighting in spurts effectively trying to counter punch against a quicker opponent and when he stopped to swap punches he was taking punches not giving them.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 78-74
Round 9
This was virtually over as a contest. Stevens superiority was such that the only question still to be answered was whether or not Harutyunyan could go the distance. Some of Stevenson’s defensive work was brilliant and he was finding and making gaps for his straight lefts but he had yet to have Harutyunyan in any trouble. He stayed on top of Harutyunyan scoring with hooks to the body that had Harutyunyan circling the ring trying to avoid punishment as Stevenson continued to dig in body shots.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 88-83
Round 10
Harutyunyan put in a big effort standing and firing punches with some success. One of the problems he faced is that with Stevenson taking a side-on stance Harutyunyan was unable to land his left hooks as they were swinging around Stevenson’s back. Stevenson was again crowding Harutyunyan and scoring with hooks from both hands to just take a closer round but the home crowd were looking for some excitement and Stevenson was being too clinical.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 98-92
Round 11 
Stevenson’s output had dropped a little in the tenth but he weas still on top. Harutyunyan was firing plenty of rights but many were blocked and Stevenson was still stabbing jabs home and hooking to the body and a series of jabs had Harutyunyan on the retreat at the end of the round but some spectators were already threading their way out of the arena.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 108-101
Round 12
Stevenson kept his jab in Harutyunyan’s face keeping him off balance and on the defensive. Harutyunyan managing to land some long shots to the body but Stevenson was finding him with jabs and the round petered out.
Score: 10-9 StevensonStevenson 118-110
A three-division champion Stevenson was making the first defence of the WBC title. He again showcased his skills on both attack and defence but even his home crowd was looking for some more in the shape of an inside distance win. There was no real sign that he was committed to closing the show early. Armenian-born Harutyunyan had no real claim to being an acceptable challenger. He had lost on points to Frank Martin and before the fight Box Rec had him rated No 48 and that looked about right. 



Conceicao vs. Foster
Conceicao wins the WBO title with controversial split decision over champion Foster 
Round 1
Foster was using nifty footwork to circle away from Conceicao’s punches then darting in with a right and straight lefts. He was short with most of his punches but did get through with a good left hook. Conceicao was too slow to cut off the ring and Foster was able to dance away leaving Conceicao lunging in vain. 
Score: 10-9 Foster
Conceicao scored with a clubbing left but Foster was spearing him with jabs and scored with a right to the head. Foster connected with jabs to head and body and dodged Conceicao’s long rights and had a very thin edge in a close round.
Score: 10-9 FosterFoster 20-18
Round 3
Conceicao upped his pace and landed some body punches as he did a better job of cutting off the ring. Conceicao came forward throwing punches and landed to the body with Foster off target with his jabs. Conceicao kept stabbing out his jab and Foster hardly threw a punch.
Score: 10-9 ConceicaoFoster 29-28
Round 4
Conceicao was still lunging forward with his jab and landed a right to the head. Foster was in defensive mode darting away from Conceicao’s punches but not countering. Foster finally began to let his hands go scoring with a little bunch of punches and followed a jab with a right to the head.
Score: 10-9 FosterFoster 39-37
Official Scores: Judge Anthoy Lundy 38-38, Judge Ron McNair 39-37 Foster, Judge Paul Wallace 39-37 Conceicao.
Round 5
There is nothing fancy about Conceicao. He is crude but very strong and he tends overreach with his punches. He was reaching here but was having some success with his jab and connected with two hard rights. They traded punches a couple of times with both landing then Conceicao connected with a right.
Score: 10-9 ConceicaoFoster 48-47
Round 6
Foster was standing his ground more using his hand speed to score with quick, lighter punches and when he did back up he was landing counters as Conceicao came forward. Both scored with rights and Conceicao threw a burst of punches but few got through as Foster turned away or deflected them..
Score: 10-9 FosterFoster 58-56
Round 7
Both scored early but Foster was easily evading Conceicao’s punches and Conceicao was taking a long step forward when throwing his rights so Foster was able to see them coming and was stepping inside with shorter punches. Foster was throwing less but with a higher degree of accuracy. 
Score: 10-9 FosterFoster 68-65
Round 8
Conceicao was coming forward throwing long jabs with Foster circling him pinging him with quick, light shots. A brief exchange saw both land then Foster moved around Conceicao landing a bunch of shots. Conceicao forced Foster to the ropes but Foster slid away and landed a right. Conceicao kept chasing but was off target.
Score: 10-9 Foster: Foster 78-74
Official Scores: Judge Anthoy Lundy 78-74 Conceicao , Judge Ron McNair 77-75 Foster, Judge Paul Wallace 77-74 Conceicao
Round 9
Conceicao advanced with purpose letting fly and landing some good lefts and rights. Foster was countering but Conceicao kept throwing long jabs and heavy rights and outworked Foster. There was a clash of heads with both cut over their right eye .Score: 10-9 ConceicaoFoster 87-84
Round 10
Conceicao chased Foster to the ropes and fired a burst of body punches with most blocked but Conceicao continued to fire combinations which he had not done in the early rounds. Foster curled a nice right around Conceicao’s guard and scored with a jab. Foster snapped Conceicao’s head back with a jab and slid away from Conceicao and again curled a right around Conceicao’s guard. 
Score: 10-9 FosterFoster 97-93
Round 11
Conceicao applied plenty of pressure from the start throwing long jabs and coming in behind them with rights and lefts. Conceicao scored with hooks from both hands and although Foster scored with a couple of counters Conceicao kept up the pressure with Foster struggling to put any punches together.
Score: 10-9 Conceicao`Foster 106-103
Round 12
Conceicao was chasing Foster throwing jabs and rights and loading up on ever punch. Foster was more accurate but was kept busy fending off Conceicao’s punches. Conceicao was throwing lots of shots and Foster was struggling to find punching room and it was clearly Conceicao’s round.
Score: 10-9 ConceicaoFoster 115-113
Official Scores: Judge Anthoy Lundy 116-112 Conceicao , Judge Ron McNair 116-112 Foster, Judge Paul Wallace 115-113 Conceicao
BrazilianConceicao was having his fourth shot at winning a title having previously lost to Oscar Valdez and Steveson and drawn with Emanuel Navarrete and getting a fourth shot shows he is getting benefit from being a Top Rank fighter. Foster was making the third defence of the WBC title. Some saw it as robbery but for me he was the winner but by only a small margin.



Davis vs. Madueno
Davis outpoints a crude but durable Madueno. Madueno knew he had to take the fight to Davis from the first but Davis was shooting jabs through Madueno’s guard then catching Madueno with counters. Madueno kept rolling forward but was chasing in vain as he was too slow to match either the hand or foot speed of Davis Madueno was flinging himself at Davis flinging wide punches but was left swishing air and at the end of the second Davis measured Madueno with two jabs and then sent a right through Madueno’s guard. Davis was happy on the back foot countering Madueno wild attacks and a straight right and a left uppercut and a sizzling combination stopped Madueno in his tracks in the third. Davis stayed in the pocket and landed three body punches at the bell. Davis cut loose with a volley of punches at the start of the fourth that had Madueno seeking shelter but the Mexican was soon lunging forward again. Another dazzling combination from Davis rocked Madueno back on his heels but he did manage to connect with a couple of clubbing rights. He kept the pressure on to score with a few punches when Davis was against the ropes but Davis was consistently getting through with shots to head and body. To his credit Madueno kept piling forward and Davids was having to work to keep him out. Davis seemed to almost take the sixth off letting Madueno force him to the ropes and corners and it turned nasty at the end of the round with both posing and punching after the bell with the referee almost knocked off his feet. Madueno lifted Davis off the floor in the seventh and looked ready to body slam Davis to the floor before the referee intervened. The round was untidy with both doing some wrestling. Davis came to life rattling combinations off Madueno’s head and body but then Davis seemed to lose interest leading to more clinches before Davis closed the round with an inch perfect left hook to the body. Davis was picking Madueno off with single shots at distance in the eighth but then falling in to a clinch. It was another messy round typified by a head down rush from Madueno driving Davis to the canvas and falling with him and then both fighters squared up to each other at the bell. There was too much clinching again in the ninth but in between the clinches Davis was raking Madueno with lightning fast bursts of punches switching effortlessly from head to body. It got nasty again in the last as both were wrestling and Madueno was thrown to the floor then Davis slipped to the floor. There was time for another blistering set of punches from Davis and then he mimed waving a matador’s cape to the bullish Madueno at the bell. Davis won on scores of 99-91 from all three judges. It was a case of two different halves as Davis dazzled in the first five rounds then only showed his brilliance in bursts in the second half. He is No 3 with the WBC, IBF and WBO but probably needs a couple more fights before going for a title in a talent-rich division with Zepeda also very much in the mix. Madueno was crude but willing but never posed a threat to Davis. He had lost to Jezzrel Corrales and Steve Claggett by wide margins.
Garcia vs. Foster 
Dominican southpaw Garcia scores a wide unanimous decision over Foster. Both had suffered recent losses and were looking for a win to buttress their rebuilding. Garcia was giving away height and reach but he was much quicker than Foster and was able to dart inside and score. Garcia landed a series of hooks at the start of the second and easily dodged Foster’s attacks in the third doing what scoring there was with Foster a bit wild with his punches and Garcia making him pay with short hooks. Their styles did not mix well and there was too much clinching but Garcia was getting the better of the exchanges. Garcia played the counter puncher looking to lure Foster onto counters. Garcia was winning the rounds and Foster really had nothing in his arsenal to change the pattern. Garcia was quicker and more accurate at distancer and stronger inside. Foster tried hard to close the distance over the late rounds but was outboxed and out landed as Garcia won on scores of 98-92 twice and 99-91. Garcia suffered a shock defeat when he was knocked out in the first round by Jordan White in August last year but had returned with a first stoppage win in March. Foster lost a majority decision to Henry Lebron in November. 
Davis vs. Johnson
Kelvin, the elder brother of Keyshawn, remained unbeaten with a majority decision over Johnson. Davis make full use of his longer reach to box his way to victory. He outboxed Johnson over the early rounds with strong right jabs, nifty movement and quality countering. Johnson pressed hard trying to cut off the ring but Davis was too quick and too clever. It was only over the closing rounds that Johnson started to have some success but Davis looked a clear winner despite the disagreement between the judges. Two had Davis winning 78-74 but the third saw it a 76-76 draw. He lacks the charisma of his younger brother but is a solid professional. Johnson was having his first fight since December 2022 so perhaps his slow start was not too much of a surprise.
Mason vs. Lebron
Mason destroys Lebron in three round. It was immediately obvious that Mason’s speed and power would make this an early night. Lebron played into Mason’s hands by walking forward trying to work inside. Mason fed him plenty of counters. A right from Masion had Lebron bleeding from the nose in the second before he put him down with an uppercut. Lebron beat the count but was down again and was saved by the bell. A burst of punches had Lebron in trouble in the third and the referee stopped the fight. Another impressive performance from 20-year-old Mason and his twelfth inside the distance finish. Lebron had suffered three losses in a row against tough unbeaten opposition in Chris Tapia, Henry Lebron and Duke Ragan but then scored two wins over easier opposition. He had taken Tapia, Lebron and Ragan the distance and Mason seemed determined to set up a comparison.

Ontario, CA, USA: Light: William Zepeda (31-0) W KO 3 Giovanni Cabrera (22-2). Fly: Ricardo Sandoval (25-2) W KO 10 Angel Acosta (24-5). Super Bantam: Manuel Flores (18-1) W KO 2 Nohel Arambulet (23-7-2). Super Light: Pedro Campa (36-3-1) W PTS 10 Alex Martin (18-6).



Zepeda vs. Cabrera
Zepeda brushes aside Cabrera in this all-southpaw match. The fight started at a quick pace with a busy Cabrera throwing lots of right leads and hooks. Zepeda was taking a measured approach walking Cabrera down and scoring to the body. Cabrera was forced on to the back foot and it was apparent that he lacked the punch to keep Zepeda out but he did enough to take the round. In the second Cabrera was again on the retreat shooting out jabs and then holding trying to smother Zepeda’s work but Zepeda just kept coming landing some hurtful combinations. Zepeda stepped up the action in the third pumping out shots from both hands. Cabrera tried to punch with him but a series of punches saw Cabrara drop to his knees and he watched the referee count to ten. Now 27 wins by KO/TKO for Zepeda. He is No 1 with all four sanctioning bodies and a run of wins over Joseph Diaz, Jaime Arboleda, Mercito Gesta and Maxi Hughes makes a good case for a shot at one of the belts. Cabrera was 21-0 with wins over Rene Tellez and Gabriel Flores before losing a split decision against Isaac Cruz in July last year.
Sandoval vs. Acosta 
Sandoval gets contentious stoppage over Acosta to win the vacant WBC Silver title. Acosta made the sharper start landing the better punches in the first but Sandoval did better in the second rocking Acosta with an uppercut. The situation was still fluid over the third and fourth with both rounds close and Sandoval working the body trying to slow Acosta. The body punching from Sandoval was having its effect and he forged ahead over the sixth and seventh. Acosta rallied to make the eighth close and then had a good ninth. Sandoval hurt Acosta with a right in the tenth forcing Acosta to hold. He seemed to have recovered but Sandoval drove him to the ropes firing punches and the referee stepped in and stopped the fight. Acosta and his corner protested and it did look premature but at the time of the stoppage Sandoval was in front 89-82, 88-83 and 87-84 on the cards. Sandoval was dropped and decisioned by David Jimenez in a title eliminator in July 2022 but had fought his way back with four wins. Collecting the Silver title should give him a lift from his No 6 spot with the WBC to go with his No 3 spot with the WBA. Former WBO light flyweight title holder Acosta had outpointed Carlos Buitrago in August.
Flores vs. Arambulet
Flores beats Arambulet in the second. Flores was on target with his right jabs in the first and then ended the fight in the second, He floored Arambulet with a right and although Arambulet made it to his feet Flores sent him down again and he was counted out. Flores has 14 wins by KO/TKO and his last three winning fights have all ended in the second round. Venezuelan Arambulet, who had come in 4lbs over the weight, is the son of former WBA minimumweight title holder Noel Arambulet and had won his last 3 fights.
Campa vs. Martin
Campa’s aggression gives him the edge over Martin. In typical Campa style he was taking the fight to Martin from the start rolling forward to get inside and hammer the body. Southpaw Martin tried to box but was being outworked and often forced to just stand and punch. Things got very heated and both fighters lost a point for hitting on the break in the fifth round. Martin scored well when he could make some space but Campa ramped up the pressure and settled matters with a tenth round knockdown. Scores 97-90, 96-91 and 94-93 for Campa. Second win for Campa as he recovers from back-t-back losses against Teo Lopez and Brandum Lee. Martin was in his first fight since losing on an eighth round stoppage against Oscar Duarte in March last year.

Anaheim, CA, USA: Super Middle: Shane Mosley Jr (22-4) W PTS 10 Daniel Jacobs (37-5). Light: Devin Cushing (14-0) W PTS 8 Manuel Correa (13-2).Light: Amado Vargas (11-0) W TKO 6 Sean Garcia (7-1-1). 
Mosley wins a wide unanimous decision over Jacobs who was having his first fight since losing split decision against John Ryder in February 2022. Mosley controlled this fight from bell to bell. He immediately took the fight to Jacobs finding gaps for his jab and connecting to the body. He continued to control the pace in the second and third again getting through with jabs with Jacobs landing some right counters but being outscored. The fourth offered the same pattern with Mosley quicker and busier and Jacobs being restricted to an occasion counter. There was some lively trading in the fifth and sixth but Jacobs was finding the pace too hot and Mosley was consistently getting through with his jabs and rights. Jacobs tried switching to southpaw but that had no real effect on the flow of the fight and Jacobs was cut over his left eye in a clash of heads in the eighth. Mosley also slowed but he dominated the ninth and tenth to emerge a clear winner on scores of 99-91 twice and 100-90. Fifth win in a row for Mosley who is 9-1in his last 10 fights losing only to Jason Quigley on a majority decision in that run and scoring victories over Gabe Rosario and D’Mitrius Ballard. Former IBF champion Jacobs is now 37 and on this showing has left it too late to be a threat in the division.
Cushing vs. Correa
Floridian Cushing maintains his 100% record but has to go the distance to get the win over Cuban Correa. Cushing used his longer reach, higher work rate and superior accuracy to win this one. Scores 80-72, 78-74 and a too close 77-75. Cushing had won 5 of his last 6 fights by KO/TKO so some useful ring time against a reasonable level opponent in Correa. 
Vargas vs. Garcia
Vargas floors and stops Garcia. Vargas was the boss from the start. Southpaw Garcia competed hard but he was outworked and outscored by the more skilled Vargas. In an exciting fourth Vargas landed a series of rights to drop Garcia. Garia only just beat the count and then landed a left hook that sent Vargas into the ropes. Now it was Garcia banging home shots with both hands until he backed off and Vargas was again hurting Garcia with body shots at the bell. Vargas scored heavily in the fifth and was driving Garcia to the ropes with punches in the sixth when the referee stopped the fight. Fifth win by KO/TKO for Vargas, one of the fighting sons of Fernando the former Olympian and IBF light middle champion. Garcia is the younger brother of Ryan Garcia. 

July 7

Tokyo, Japan: Super Fly: Fernando Martinez (17-0) W PTS 12 Kazuto Ioka (31-3-1) W. Super Bantam: Seiya Tsutsumi (11-0-2) W TKO 4 Weerawat Noolae (4-2).



Martinez vs. Ioka
Martinez outpoints Ioka in an exciting and brutal battle to unify the WBA and IBF titles 
Round 1
The usual frantic start from Martinez as he connected with left hooks to the body and rights to the head. Ioka pushed out some jabs and Martines attacked again firing hooks from both hands. Ioka finally made some space and landed left hooks to the body forcing Martinez back with Martinez just hiding behind his guard. Martinez then sprang into action again bombarding Ioka with hooks and forcing Ioka back at the end of a very lively first round.
Score: 10-9 Martinez
Round 2
Martinez came flying out of his corner firing hooks again driving Ioka back and connecting to head and body. Ioka had to wait out the storm before he could respond. Once again Martinez just backed up behind his guard not throwing punches before exploding with hooks and uppercuts and Ioka retreated. Martinez landed a series of rights then Ioka banged back with left hooks to the body before Martinez connected with more hooks. Ioka was going to the body but some of his hooks were borderline. Martinez slammed a bunch of punches home. Martinez was setting a fast pace and it remained to be seen whether he could maintain it.
Score: 10-9 MartinezMartinez 20-18
Round 3
A quieter start as Ioka came forward jabbing and hooking. Again, Martinez burst into life driving Ioka back with vicious hooks and straight rights then Ioka let fly with punches with some landing on the belt line. He tried to stand and trade with Martinez but Martinez was whipping jabs through Ioka’s guard forcing Ioka back. They exchanged punches with a couple of uppercuts snapping back Ioka’s head.
Score: 10-9 MartinezMartinez 30-27
Round 4
Martinez went straight to work and he was finding it easy to penetrate Ioka’s guard and snapped his head back with uppercuts. He then went onto the back foot and was spearing the oncoming Ioka with jabs. Martinez was showing some boxing smarts with Ioka unable to trap him against the ropes. Martinez then exploded with a succession of punches before slipping away with Ioka in pursuit. Ioka just could not trap Martinez who let loose with a burst of punches easily penetrating Ioka’s guard.
Score: 10-9 MartinezMartinez 40-36
Official Scores: Judge Stanley Christodoulou 40-36 Martinez, Judge Edward Hernandez (40-36 Martinez, Judge Jedan Pierrevan Imschoot 40-36 Martinez.
Round 5
Ioka made a good start with his jabs. They traded shots with both scoring then Ioka landed a right uppercut and a series of jabs. Martinez had gone into his shell allowing Ioka to dominate the trading. Martinez fired another of his bursts of punches but Ioka punched with him and Martinez backed off. Ioka was getting through with body punches and it was a subdued Martinez at the end of the round.
Score: 10-9 IokaMartinez 49-46
Round 6
Ioka was putting in some good work with his strong left jab and solid rights and Martinez was not firing nearly as many punches as in earlier rounds. The pace slowed and the exchanges were less frenzied and Ioka was doing the more impressive scoring. 
Score: 10-9 IokaMartinez 58-56
Round 7
They traded hard punches at the start of the round with both having some success. Martinez stormed forward raking Ioka with a stream of punches scoring with hooks, short jabs and uppercuts driving Ioka back around the ring. Ioka launched an attack of his own and was slamming home body punches with Martinez going back. Martinez produce a flurry of scoring shots at the bell.
Score: 10-9 Martinez Martinez 68-65
Round 8
Martinez immediately drove Ioka back with hooks then Ioka drove home jabs and hooks to send Martinez back. Then it was Martinez turn to rake Ioka with punches. It was punch for punch for a while then Ioka was digging in borderline body shots as he ended the round strongly
Score: 10-9 IokaMartinez 77-75
Official Scores: Judge Stanley Christodoulou 79-73 Martinez, Judge Edward Hernandez 80-72 Martinez, Judge Jedan Pierrevan Imschoot 77-75 Martinez.
Round 9
Another blazing start from Martinez as strode forward firing punches. Things calmed as they traded jabs. Martinez briefly switched to southpaw. He was firing lots of punches with Ioka looking to hook to the body but being stopped by incoming shots from Martinez. Ioka connected with some hooks to the body but was caught by an uppercut. As Martinez took a close round
Score: 10-9 Martinez Martinez 87-84
Round 10
Martinez was just stabbing out jabs from alternate stances before launching another attack. Ioka took over and had Martinez backing off with body punches. Curiously Martinez’s footwork was all over the place. Sometimes he was left foot forward and then his feet were parallel to each other which made it hard for him to get the correct leverage for his punches. He landed a right that sent Ioka back to the ropes but Ioka rebounded and landed a sequence of punches that drove Martinez back and then got the better of a fierce exchange.
Score: 10-9 IokaMartinez 96-94
Round 11
Martinez opened up with a barrage of punches. He landed well. He was switching guards but went into his shell under jabs from Ioka. Both were understandably tired by the frantic pace of the fight but Martinez seemed the stronger and he landed some good head shots. Ioka replied with a series of body punches then Martinez was firing single jabs with Ioka unable to chase him down and Martinez scored with a quick burst of punches. 
Score: 10-9 MartinezMartinez 106-103
Round 12
Ioka scored with a sharp right and Martinez with two hooks. There was a furious exchange with both targeting the body and Martinez ended another exchange landing two rights to the head. Martinez pelted Ioka with punches with Ioka struggling to respond They both threw wild punches with Martinez throwing himself off his feet at the bell.
Score: 10-9 MartinezMartinez 116-112
Official Scores: Judge Stanley Christodoulou 117-111 Martinez, Judge Edward Hernandez 120-108 Martinez, Judge Jedan Pierrevan Imschoot 116-112 Martinez.
The Argentinian showed amazing stamina to maintain the amazing pace he set and Ioka was never able to match him. It was Martinez third defence of the IBF title and hopefully he will take on WBC champion Jesse Rodriguez or return to Japan to face WBO champion Kosei Tanaka. He has no mandatory challenger with either the IBF or WBA. Ioka has had a great career. Strictly speaking he is a two-division champion-minimumweight and super flyweight-as his light flyweight and flyweight titles were the secondary WBA titles so not the real title but just two losses before this inn his 15 year career is an outstanding achievement .

JULY 5

Campsie, Australia: Super Middle: Emmanuel Danso (36-9) W TKO 5 Alex Walters (20-2).
Danso pulls of an unexpected away win as he stops Walters in the fifth. Walters had more skills than Danso. He was much faster and getting though Danso’s guard with jabs both shooting from the hip and straight. Danso was not quick enough to counter and Walters was well in control. In the fifth Walters dodged a right from Danso and scored with two hard rights of his own. As he moved in to press his attack again he was met by a devastating short right that dropped him on his back. He made it to his feet but stumbled and the referee stopped the fight. Ghanaian “Kwhau Tyson” Danso was 0-2 in Australia with both losses early stoppages but his 29 wins by KO/TKO indicated he could be dangerous. New Zealand-born Walters had won his last 7 fights but both of his losses have come inside the distance 

Kunasi, Ghana: Super Feather: John Zile (13-0-2) W RTD 2 Emmanuel Quartey (26-13-1).Feather: Stanley Nyantakyi W TKO 3 Isaac Netty (28-18-1). Cruiser: Jacob Dickson (13-1) W KO 2 David Okai (19-41). Super Welter: Daniel Lartey (18-8-2) W TKO 5 Kofi Ansah Raymond (8-50). Light Heavy: Jon Mbanugu (10-0-1) DREW 8 George Akoto (3-0-1).

Rome, Italy: Bantam: Salvatore Contino (9-0) W PTS 10 Mohammed Obbadi (24-3). 
Contino surprises as he outpoints more experienced Obbadi. Obbadi had height and reach over Contino and jabbed well over the opening round. Contino was launching wild attacks and in a dramatic second as Contino drove forward Obbadi caught him with a counter right than sent Contino down heavily. He made it to his feet at six but his legs were rubbery and he stumbled forward falling into the referee and then into a corner. The referee completed the eight count and let the fight continue and as Obbadi fired punches trying to end the fight Contino landed a left hook that sent Obbadi tumbling back into the ropes. He bounced off but the referee decided the ropes had held Obbadi up and gave Obbadi a count with Obbadi scoring well before the round ended. Obbadi has loads of class but Contino just kept throwing himself forward firing punches hustling Obbadi out of his stride and scoring with clubbing rights. He was nailed by a hard right in the sixth but Obbadi was docked a point in the seventh for coming in with his head down. Contino was dragging Obbadi into a brawl and getting the better of the exchanges and Obbadi tired and his punch output dropped as Contino kept up the pressure to the end. Contino won the vacant Italian title with all three judges scoring it 96-93. Contino was an outsider as he had less experience than Obbadi and was moving up to ten rounds for the first time. Obbadi had blown a title chance when he was knocked out in three round by Filipino Jade Borneo in January 2022 and this was only his third fight since then.

JULY 6

London, England: Super Feather: Reece Bellotti (19-5) W PTS 12 Levi Giles (15-2). Heavy: Johnny Fisher (12-0) W TKO 1 Alen Babic (12-2). Cruiser: John Hedges (10-0) W Tec DEC 6 Lewis Oakford (5-1). Fly: Jasmina Zapotoczna (8-1) W PTS 10 Maisie Rose Courtney (6-1). 



Bellotti vs. Giles
Bellotti retains the Commonwealth and British titles with a unanimous verdict over Giles. A lively start from both as they looked to establish their jab in a close first round. Bellotti upped his pace from the second just outworking Gies in another close round. Bellotti took over from the third outscoring the challenger and building a good lead. Bellotti was boxing well landing accurate combinations and making the body his target. Giles had some success with left hooks but other than that was not really throwing enough punches or with enough accuracy allowing Bellotti to pick up the rounds without too much effort. It was an established pattern without much change from round to round making for a poor fight. Bellotti had things well in hand and was cruising to victory but there was a late scare as Giles connected with a right in the twelfth that shook Bellotti but Bellotti called on his substantial experience to come though the crisis to win. Scores:118-110 twice and 117-110. Fifth win in a row for Bellotti who has rebuilt after a run of 2 wins in 7 fights put a question mark over his career. Challenging Bellotti was just too big a step for Giles at this time. 



Fisher vs. Babic
Fisher crushes Babic in 36 seconds. Babic was advancing in a semi-crouch with the taller Fisher just probing with jabs. Fisher suddenly let fly with a couple of rights to the head and followed up with a barrage of punches that sent Babic down. He climbed to his feet but lurched unsteadily almost falling into the ropes and the referee completed the eight count and rightly waived the fight over. Now eleven wins by KO/TKO for the 25-year-old 6’4” Fisher and his fifth one round finish. Second time in his last three fights that Babic has been blown away inside a round.
Hedges vs. Oakford
Southpaw Hedges gets a technical decision over Oakwood. The 6’5” Hedges made good use of his right jab to score and to keep Oakwood off balance. In the sixth as Oakwood moved in with a left hook their heads banged together and Oakwood suffered a gash over his left eye and was unable to continue. The cards read 59-56 twice and 58-57 and Hedges wins the vacant BBB of C Southern Area title.
Zapotoczna vs. Courtney
Yorkshire’s Polish-born Zapotoczna takes a unanimous decision over Londoner Courtney. Zapotoczna made a good start boxing well and using some strong, accurate jabbing to score. Courtney needed to get inside but the jabs and counters from Zapotoczna had her in control. Courtney did manage to break through in the fourth and fifth was close but with Zapotoczna’s accuracy giving her an edge. Courtney fought hard over the second half of the fight but again the jabbing and accurate counters from Zapotoczna frustrated her efforts and Zapotoczna was a good winner. Scores 98-92, 97-93 and 96-94 for Zapotoczna who wins the vacant WBA International title. She had lost to Shannon Ryan for the super fly version of this title in February. Courtney, 23, can come again with a little more experience under her belt.

Charleville-Mezieres, France: Super Light: Walid Ouizza (19-2) W PTS 10 Bryan Venant (11-2-1). Fly: Justine Lallemand (11-3-1) W PTS 10 Inna Statkevych (6-6-3).
Ouizza vs, Venant
Ouizza wins the vacant WBC Francophone title with a unanimous decision over Cameroon-born Venant on scores of 97-93 twice and 98-92. Former undefeated EBU Silver title holder Ouizza makes it 11 wins in a row including a victory over useful Charlemagne Metonyekpon. Swiss-based Venant was unbeaten in his last 11 fights. 
Lallemand vs. Statkevych
Lallemand also wins a version of the WBC Francophone title with a unanimous verdict over UK-based Ukrainian Statkevych. The scores were 98-92, 97-92 and 96-93 with the first not really showing how hard Statkevych made it for the deserving winner. Lallemand had lost in two shots at the European title. Statkevych is now 2-3 in her last 5 outings.

Ladispoli, Italy: Fly: Manuel Rizzieri (8-1) W Ahmed Obaid (6-6-3).
In front of his home fans Rizzieri takes a split decision over Obaid to win the vacant Italian title. This was a close contests difficult to score with both fighters having difficulties with a slippery canvas. Rizzeri won on scores of 97-93 and 96-94 and 96-94 for Obaid, Fifth consecutive win for Rizzeri. Palestinian-born Italian Obaid was 3-0-2 in his last 5 bouts.

Tokyo, Japan: Super Bantam: Subaru Murata (7-0) W TKO 6 Bryan Wild (12-1-1). Light Fly: Shokichi Iwata (13-1-0) W TKO 6 Jahzeel Trinidad (11-1).
Murata vs. Wild
Southpaw Murata halts Wild in the sixth. Filipino southpaw Wild was competitive early as he shook Murata with right uppercuts in both the second and third rounds. Murata was focusing on the body to good effect in the third and Wild faded out of the fight. He was driven into a corner in the fourth and floored with a right. Wild survived but took plenty of punishment and was under heavy fire in the fifth and sixth and the fight was stopped. All seven of Murata’s fights have ended inside the distance.
Iwata vs. Trinidad
Iwata hits too hard for Filipino Trinidad. Although conceding height and reach Iwata boxed cleverly and kept Trinidad under constant pressure. Iwata dropped Trinidad with a left hook in the third and then again in the sixth. Trinidad beat the count but was driven to the ropes and was being bombarded with punches when the referee stopped the fight. Tenth inside the distance victory for Iwata who lost a decision against Jonathan Gonzlez in a challenge for the WBO light fly title in November 22. That title is now vacant and Iwata is No 1 so should be fighting for the vacant title later this year. Trinidad holds the Philippines Boxing Federation title which is not the formal Philippines title.

Uster, Switzerland: Super Welter: Jerome Haller (7-2) W PTS 10 Venhar Haziri (6-7-3). Welter: Dennis Dauti (25-5-1) W TKO 2 Goga Kavtaradze (3-2-1). Middle: Ramadan Hisseni (19-1-2) W TKO 3 Victor Ionascu (12-6).
Haller vs. Haziri
Haller registers his third consecutive win but has to settle for a split decision over Kosovan Haziri. Scores 97-93 and 96-94 for Haller and 96-94 for Haziri. 
Dauti vs. Kavtaradze
Swiss-born Greek Dauti stops Georgian novice Kavtaradze in the second round. Kavtaradze made a good start winning the first round but Dauti overwhelmed him the second for his ninth inside the distance victory. Dauti is 6-0-1 in his last 7 fights. Kavtaradze overmatched.
Hisseni vs. Ionascu
Swiss boxer Hisseni stops Moldovan Ionascu in the third round. Hisseni had outscored Ionascu over the first two rounds and with Ionascu under heavy fire in the third the referee stopped the fight. Hisseni is 5-0-1 in his last 6 fights. Ionascu falls to 5 losses in his last six fights.

London, England: Middle: Jordan Reynolds (8-0) W PTS 10 Joel Bartell (6-0) W. Bantam: Lewis Roberts (11-0) W PTS 10 Ben Lilley (4-2-1). Super Feather: Aaron Prospere (13-1) W PTS 10 Marley Masion (4-2-1). Superb Feather: Michael Webber-Kane (12-0-1) Drew 10 Frank Arnold (11-1-2).
Reynolds vs. Bartell
Reynolds wins on a unanimous decision. Both scored with booming rights in the first and Reynolds scored with more rights in the second with Bartell banging back but getting the worst of the exchanges with this already looking to be a survival of the fittest battle. Bartell did better in the third landing a series of rights inside but Reynolds fired back to have the edge in the fourth and fifth. He was outworking Bartell but Bartell again came through with another bunch of shots driving Reynolds back in the sixth. Both were tiring from the heavy work they were putting in to this brutal battle. Reynolds was just that bit busier which gave him the edge but Bartell kept landing heavy hooks inside. Reynolds had just a little bit more left in the tank and he did enough to wrap up the verdict with a stronger finish. Scores 97-93 twice and 96-94 for Reynolds. He won a number of international tournaments as an amateur and fought in the World Series of Boxing 
Roberts vs. Lilley
Roberts wins the vacant Commonwealth title with a unanimous decision over Lilley. Roberts has plenty of speed and quick hands and he just kept circling the slower but more powerful Lilley who kept chasing Roberts down looking to cut off the ring and work on Robert’s body. Roberts lack power so he had to work hard and Lilley was able to pile forward without worrying too much about counters from Roberts but Roberts accurate jabbing and quick shots to head and body kept him ahead as he boxed his way to the win on scores of 95-93 twice and 96-93. These two are well matched as Roberts decisioned Lilley in September with the referee scoring it 96-94
Prospere vs. Masion
Prospere made a confident start circling Mason and spearing him with jabs then Mason connected with a left jab that dumped Prospere on the floor propped up against the ropes. He was up immediately and outscored Mason for the remaining part of the round. The fight was fast-paced with Prospere using his longer reach and better movement against the aggressive attacks of Mason. There were plenty of spirited exchanges as Mason attempted to force Prospere into standing and trading shots. Mason has a bit of success in the seventh as he chased Prospere down but Prospere used his jab to hold Mason off and emerged a good winner with the referee scoring it 96-92 for Prospere.
Webber-Kane vs. Arnold
This one finished in a draw which seemed about right. 
Webber-Kane was storming forward with southpaw Arnold boxing on the back foot but a right dumped him into the ropes at the end of the first. Arnold recovered and Webber-Kane was cut over his left eye in a clash of heads in the second. Arnold was in trouble in a torrid fourth but came thorough that and was spearing Webber-Kane with jabs and right counters. Webber-Kane continued to drive forward but was put down by a left hook in the eighth. They fought fiercely through the ninth and tenth with both scoring freely and it was difficult to split them and the referee carded it 94-94 so Webber-Kent retains the BBB of C Southern Area title.

Fight of the week: (Significance): Shakur Stevenson outpointing Artem Harutyunyan keeps him in the mix in a division with the potential for so many mouthwatering fights
Fight of the week: (Entertainment): Fernando Martinez vs. Kazuto Ioka was a war all the way
Fighter of the week: Fernando Martinez as he unifies the WBA and IBF super flyweight belts.
Punch of the week: The short right hook from Emmanuel Danso that dropped Alex Water was a beauty
Upset of the week: O’Shaquie Foster was favoured over Robson Conceicao but the Brazilian got the win
Prospect watch: English heavyweight John Fisher 12-0 impressed in obliterating Alen Babic in one round

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.”


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


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