Having edged past Russia’s new-look Patriot Boxing Team in Week One, Astana Arlans Kazakhstan will look to build on that success as they welcome Season VI revelations the Uzbek Tigers. The visitors battled to the Semi-Finals in their debut campaign last year but fell to the China Dragons in their Season VII opener, and will hope the considerable experience of a strong line-up will get them quickly back to winning ways.
The high quality of boxing will be at the fore from the first bell of the opening Flyweight (52kg) bout, with the Arlans’ Rio 2016 Olympian Olzhas Satibayev, also part of the championship-winning team in Season V, facing the Tigers’ Aborjon Kodirov, a regular in the Uzbek side last year. The hosts’ Zakir Safiullin then goes up against Tigers’ Murodjon Akhmadaliev in the second bout at Lightweight (60kg). Safiullin has a huge amount of WSB experience behind him, but will need all of that five-round expertise to overcome Uzbekistan’s in-form Rio 2016 bronze medallist.
Aslanbek Shymbergenov meets Shakhram Giyasov in the third bout of the evening, and while the Arlans Welterweight (69kg) currently has a 5-2 record in the competition, he too will need to be on his guard against another of the Uzbek Rio 2016 medallists. The strength of the Lions squad this year is then further underlined with Light Heavyweight duel between Nurdaulet Zharmanov and Uzbekistan’s World Championship and Olympic silver medallist Bektemir Melikuziev.
Completing the Week Three action, the Super Heavyweight (+91kg) bout between Kamshybek Kunkabayev and Bakhodir Jalolov could be the pivotal match of the tie. Jalolov was a beaten Quarter-Finalist in Rio but will have a testing WSB debut against the Kazakh who had a strong Season VI campaign including a big win over Venezuela Caciques’ Edgar Muñoz.
Watch the match live on the WSB Facebook page: www.facebook.com/WSB.Boxing