A vibrant, fired-up Cuba Domadores, oozing class in front of their home crowd, whitewashed Ukraine Otamans 5-0 in their Group A clash on Thursday evening.
Boasting one London 2012 Olympic champion and two Doha 2015 AIBA World Boxing champions in their five-man line-up, the Cubans dismantled their opponents, claiming ample revenge for their surprise 3-2 away defeat to Ukraine Otamans earlier in WSB’s Season VI.
The delighted Havana crowd first witnessed light flyweight Joahnys Argilagos demonstrate his precocious talent against Ukraine Otamans’ national champion Denys Kozaruk. The 19-year-old Cuban, who has already won six of his nine WSB bouts, was on the front foot from the off and despite a second round comeback from the Ukrainian, Argilagos was a comfortable winner.
Teammate and 2012 Olympic bantamweight gold medallist Robeisy Ramirez put in a stellar second and third round to defeat WSB debutant Ivan Soloviov by TKO. The Ukraine Otamans fighter had initially surprised his exalted opponent as he went on the attack from the start but ultimately, Ramirez’s class told.
The high quality performances continued to flow from the home team with 2015 AIBA World Boxing Championships light welterweight silver medallist Yasniel Toledo dazzling the crowd and his opponent with his mesmerising footwork and technically sound counter attacks. Toledo won easily all five rounds.
With the match and a WSB Season VI playoff place secure, it was left to 2015 AIBA World middleweight champion Arlen Lopez to put on a show in his clash with Ukraine Otamans’ Taras Holovashchenko. A succession of rapid combinations proved too much for Holovashchenko who lost by TKO in the final round.
A final dash of glamour was provided by Erislandy Savon, nephew of one of the sport’s true greats who was ringside, the three-time Olympic champion Felix Savon. The 25-year-old breezed through his bout with Dmytro Lisovyi winning all five rounds.
The Ukraine Otamans remain in second place in Group A and face a crucial contest with Turkiye Conquerors in Istanbul on Saturday afternoon. A win will be enough to see them claim the second playoff place.
Season IV champions Cuba Domadores fight again on Friday night in Havana, with their thoughts already turned towards a third successive playoffs.