WSB boxers on a roll at the AIBA World Championships

WSB boxers on a roll at the AIBA World Championships

The action continues at the AIBA World Boxing Championships Almaty 2013. We take a look at some of the the WSB stars that have advanced to the quarter finals.

Clemente Russo (Dolce & Gabbana Italia Thunder)

Heavyweight (91 kg) Dolce & Gabbana Italia Thunder superstar Clemente Russo squared up to Levan Guledani of Georgia and was looking very confident for the last bout in Ring B of this afternoon session. The former World Champion and double Olympic Silver medallist initially probed with is jab but his Georgian opponent had a tight defence. Clemente began to drop his guard to encourage his opponent to open up. Once this happened, we really had a fight on our hands with the young Georgian totally un-phased by the legend he was facing. Russo took the bout after one of his typical battles. “It was difficult”, admitted the Italian. “I always find the first one difficult. I’ve been here for seven days and all I can think about is this first fight. So there is lots of pressure. This wasn’t a beautiful fight but hopefully on Monday I will produce my best stuff. The Georgian was a strong fighter and I have the Danish boxer next. He is very fast and technical so it should be good”.

In his second bout yesterday against Jim Andreasen Russo did indeed look fairly solid, and progresses to the quarter finals after a comfortable 3:0 win.

Erislandy Savon (Cuba Domadores)

Heavyweight (91 kg) Erislandy Savon of Cuba meanwhile was scheduled to box the last bout in Ring A, though it was running slightly behind Ring B at that stage. With Russo already brawling with Guledani, Savon started making his way into the arena. However there was barely the time to jot the fighters’ names down when Savon dropped his opponent Jinho Heo of Korea with an epic left hook that floored the Korean boxer in less than thirty seconds for a TKO victory. “I feel good about going into the next one without having wasted any energy”, said the Cuban. Thus it was that Savon turned up to work and left early, while Russo was still battling on…

In his second bout yesterday, he was equally imposing on Chouaib Bouloudinats of the Algeria Desert Hawks. Savon looks like a purpose built boxing machine when he is in the ring, but as you would expect for a boxer with the talent and experience of Bouloudinats, the Algerian was not at all over awed. That is of course until a huge left hook dropped him for an eight count at 1:48 of the 2nd round. Somehow the Algerian recovered to survive the round. To give full credit to the Desert Hawk, he did not shy away from the task that was now in front of him when he came out for the third. It may have been an uphill struggle, (make that, an uphill struggle that was cross country and in the driving rain), but he still came out and went for it. Un-phased by the portrait of athleticism that stood in front of him, Bouloudinats made a real go of it, but Savon was just, too strong, too fast and basically too good. The Cuban is obviously a serious contender here to go all the way.

Andrew Selby (British Lionhearts)

Andrew Selby of Wales took on highly rated American boxer Malik Jackson to open the day’s boxing at Flyweight (52 kg). Jackson was very impressive and caused Selby all sorts of troubles. He pursued the former British Lionheart around the ring, not allowing him to engage in his usual flamboyant style. In the third, the American southpaw landed a heavy left which caused a gasp in the Kazakh crowd. Selby won however, doing enough damage to out-point the American though he was displeased with his performance. “It didn’t go too well”, said the Welshman. “I had to wait for a while before I could box as I had a bye in the first round, so there was a bit of ring rust there. I’ve got a Cuban next so I’m going to have to pick it up now. I can do better, but the American is a good boxer to be fair to him, so at least I got the win and that bout is out of the way”.

Abdelkader Chadi (Algeria Desert Hawks)

Abdelkader Chadi, who fought for the Algeria Desert Hawks last season, did an excellent job in defeating his tough Belarusian opponent Yauheni Dauhaliavets at Light Welterweight (64 kg). The bout wasn’t straightforward for Chadi, with Dauhaliavets pushing him hard. Both boxers landed some significant blows on each other but in the end, Chadi’s experience came to the fore. “I was happy with that”, he said. “I was out against a boxer who was very strong and physically well prepared. Fortunately, I managed to pull through”.

Unfortunately in his subsequent bout yesterday Chadi lost against the tough Sanjarbek Rakhmanov of Uzbekistan and is now out of the competition.

Yosbany Veitia (Cuba Domadores)

Light Flyweight (49 kg) Yosbany Veitia Soto who featured for the Domadores de Cuba in their debut performance against Mexico Guerreros this summer, took on APB boxer Mark Barriga from the Philippines for the day’s other opening bout. While the crowd were busy screaming on their local hero Zhakypov, one of the most technically interesting bouts of the World Championships so far was taking place in the other ring. The two southpaws felt each other out initially but were quickly landing good combinations and using very dynamic foot work. Soto seemed to be getting the better of the exchanges but was caught off balance in the third round and given a standing eight count. The bout now very much hung in the balance with only a minute and a half to go. Soto charged forward but Barriga did well to stuff a lot of his efforts. Later on, Soto caught the Filipino with a cross that left him looking wobbly. His overall performance was enough to see him take the win 3:0 in a bout that was tighter than its sounds on paper.

Yesterday he had a walk over against the Welshman Ashley Williams who was unfortunately forced to pull out through injury. This puts the Cuban through to the quarter finals.

Mohamed Flissi (Algeria Desert Hawks)

Light Flyweight (49 kg) Mohamed Flissi of the Algeria Desert Hawks squared off to Joselito Velazquez of the Mexico Guerreros. The two have never fought each other in the WSB so this was an interesting match-up. Flissi landed a really hard blow in round one but the Guerrero came back with a shot of his own that was even harder, leaving Flissi with a standing eight count. In general, Velazquez was taking the centre of the ring, looking to land hooks while Flissi boxed at distance when he could, trying to circle his opponent. Flissi’s tactics worked well and he managed to out point and frustrate the Guerreros boxer from that point on. It was enough to see him take the win. “It was a difficult fight of course”, said Flissi. “But my preparation was good and I found a way to win the bout thank heavens. He has a lot of experience but fortunately it was ok in the end”.

Lindolfo Delgado (Mexico Guerreros)

Delgado had a fairly smooth passage to the next round against Andrique Allisop of the Seychelles. The Lightweight (60 kg) knocked his opponent down in the second with a minute remaining. He allowed himself to cruise through the third when it became clear that the Seychelles athlete had gone into survival mode. “He was a complicated rival, but after the shot that knocked him down he didn’t want to attack any more. My coach told me to wait for him at that point so that’s what I did”, said the Mexican.

Elsewhere, the bout between WSB Mexico Guerreros boxer Vazgen Safaryants of Belarus and Baku Fires star Elvin Isayev of Azerbaijan was excellent at Lightweight, with both boxers working incredibly hard. In the end, the Azeri out-gunned his rival for an outstanding result.

Yamil Peralta (Argentina Condors)

Yamil has looked good across his two bouts so far and cruised to a comfortable looking 3:0 victory over Tadas Tamasauskas of Lithuania last night. The Condors boxer took the match 30/27 according to all three judges to comfortably make the quarter finals.