Posts Tagged ‘Astana Arlans’
Grand Slam Puts Astana Arlans Ahead after First Night of Finals
Friday, May 06, 2011
Boxers who had been used to competing in a home or away corner in the WSB for the past six months suddenly found themselves in neutral territory today for the first leg of the WSB Team Finals at the Guizhou University Stadium in the city of Guiyang, China.
It quickly became clear that the opposing boxer was not the only opponent to overcome tonight, as all the boxers had to adapt to fighting in a completely different time zone and a much higher altitude than they are used to.
It was yet another devastating performance by the Astana Arlans’ naturalized Kazakh Kanat Slam that gave the Arlans the edge on the first night. Slam stopped Paris United’s Stéphane Cuevas in the first round of the middleweight contest to notch up a fifth victory for the season. Slam has won all but one of his fights inside the distance, starting with a thrilling knock-out in his debut in week six of the competition.
Paris United had decided to rest their star bantamweight Nordine Oubaali for the Individual Championships in two week’s time, selecting Giorgi Kilanava from Georgia to take to the ring for only his third time this season with the unenviable task of facing world number one WSB bantamweight Kanat Abutalipov of the Astana Arlans.
Despite the enormity of the task, Kilanava commanded respect in the ring and remained unfazed by apparent taunts from his opponent, who appeared to be grinning through his gumshield in the second round.
But it was Kilanava who took the upper hand in the third round, momentarily landing Abutalipov on the ropes. Abutalipov countered in the closing seconds of the third round but the Georgian made a break in the fourth and continued to dominate in the fifth. However, it was too late to make up the difference and Abutalipov took the split decision 46-46, 48-47, 48-47 to open the scoring in the Arlans’ favour.
“I’m very happy,” Abutalipov said after the bout.” Although my opponent wasn’t as strong as I expected, I still found it a difficult fight.”
Paris United’s lightweight Rachid Azzedine missed out on a place in the Individual Championships by four seconds and was determined to make up for this against Merey Akshalov in the University of Guizhou Stadium tonight.
By the end of the second round he was ahead after a cut to his opponent had to be attended to twice by the ringside doctor. He maintained the lead through to the end to take a win by unanimous decision 49-46, 48-47, 48-47.
“I had one bout before this and I’m glad about that because I was worried that the cut might open up again,” he said. “The bout was difficult because of the jet lag”
The middleweight encounter was over very quickly as Stéphane Cuevas came faced a barrage of punches from Kanat Slam from the opening bell. After only half of the first round had elapsed, Cuevas appeared to be unsteady on his feet and the French corner threw in the towel, handing Slam his third straight win inside the distance.
In contrast, the only way the light heavyweight bout between Hrvoje Sep and Ramzjon Ahmedov would have finished early would have been by a knock-out as the boxers traded punches so equally that at one point in second round they even managed to land connecting punches each other at the same time.
Although Sep opened strongly to win the first round, in the later stages of the contest both boxers were visibly tired and Ahmedov took a slight lead. In the closing rounds both boxers hunkered down low to slug it out and the fight was too close to call.
The judges confirmed Ahmedov as the winner with a split decision 47-48, 48-47, 49-46.
Heavyweights Tony Yoka and Ruslan Myrsatayev opted for a very open fight, much to the delight of the spectators, who could see evenly traded blows clearly connecting.
Yoka landed a crushing blow in the second round but moments later Myrsatayev caught him off guard with a straight right that had him staggering a couple of meters back to the ropes.
As the altitude took its toll, both boxers already looked tired by the third round, but nevertheless dug deep into their reserves to withstand the full 15 minutes in the ring.
With Yoka ahead going into the final round, a straight left that connected with Myrsatayev sealed the victory for Paris United to close out the first day’s scores 3-2 in the Astana Arlans’ favour.
“I was very tired and I think my team mates were as well,” Yoka said after the bout. “Part of that is down to the time difference and part to the altitude.”
Youth Olympic Champion Yoka has a great ally in team-mate Filip Hrgovic – the second Croatian boxer of Paris United, who will close out the competition tomorrow night.
“Even if me and Filip are still young, I think we are two of the best junior heavyweights in the world at the moment and we are going to do some damage,” Yoka says.
“Filip and I follow each other closely and we have a great friendly competition.”
The scores make for a thrilling finale tomorrow night in Guiyang in which Hrgovic could play a decisive role in the final bout.
Yoka’s advice for his colleague: “I will tell him he’ll be tired because of the altitude but we are here for the team and that’s what helped me to find that little bit extra tonight.”
Photo: Rahid Azzedine of Paris United, right, lunges with a straight left against opponent Merey Akshalov of the Astana Arlans.
Photo Credit: WSB
Paris & Astana Set to Contend for WSB Team Title
The first-ever World Series of Boxing team champion will be crowned this week. After six months of competition, the two contenders, Paris United and Astana Arlans have registered their squads for the finals, which will be held at the Guizhou University Gymnasium in Guiyang, China, May 6-7.
The teams will battle for the title over two nights with a squad of ten boxers, each night featuring five bouts in each of the WSB’s five weight categories.
Six months of competition featuring 76 matches have unfolded among 12 worldwide franchises comprised of over 200 boxers from 49 countries. Just four teams survived an ultimate test of will to compete in the inaugural WSB play-offs as the Baku Fires, Los Angeles Matadors, Astana Arlans and Paris United found enough success in the ring to advance and represent their respective franchise cities.
As has been the case all season, the team finals will be intense as two proud franchises featuring seven Olympians and 12 World Championships competitors will face-off in an decisive season-ending duel that is sure to feature the best non-stop boxing action outside the Olympic Games.
Paris United arrived in Guiyang over the weekend to train in earnest for the finals after eliminating favourites Baku Fires in the semi-finals. Brahim Asloum’s squad will, however, be without their bantamweight star Nordine Oubaali and light heavyweight Ludovic Groguhe, who are both contenders in the Individual Championships.
Groguhe had an operation on his hand last week after an injury he sustained during the finals and his recovery in time for the Individual Championships on May 27 and 28 is still uncertain. Oubaali has chosen to sit out to concentrate on the Individual Championships.
Astana will arrive in Guiyang with a formidable squad that includes two Beijing medalists in its middleweight line-up. Gold medallist Bakhyt Sarsekbayev, who was beaten by Christopher Pearson of the Los Angeles Matadors for only the second time in six matches in the second semi-final leg, is joined by Slam Kanat, the bronze medalist from Beijing who has since changed nationality from Chinese to Kazakh.
With bantamweight Kanat Abutalipov and lightweight Yerzhan Mussafirov both qualified for the Individual Championships as the top boxers in their weight categories over the regular season, Astana also look strong in the lower weight divisions.
The absence of Abutalipov’s opponent in the Individual Championships, Oubaali, means a return to the ring for John Joe Nevin for Paris United. Nevin had missed both semi-finals after having trouble making the weight. He now returns for one crucial last fight at 54kg before a likely move up to lightweight for next season. Joining Nevin will be Georgian boxer Giorgi Kilanava, a 2009 World Championships competitor who will be looking for his first WSB win after two previous defeats.
Rachid Azzedine is Paris United’s response to top lightweight Mussafirov of the Astana Arlans. The 28-year-old has been looking for a major title since his gold medal at the Tampere Tournament in 2008 but has excelled in the WSB, picking up five wins in five bouts before an unfortunate technical draw in the penultimate week of the regular season dashed his hopes of qualifying for the Individual Championships.
The “World Series of Boxing” Regular Season Comes To An End
The draw for the play-offs will take place on Monday, March 21 at the WSB headquarters in Lausanne and will be broadcast live on the WSB website.
Astana Arlans Clinch Last Play-Off PlaceAfter 3-2 Win
A close 3-2 win over Pohang Poseidons, who finish the season at the bottom of the Asian conference table, was enough to secure the last of the four World Series of Boxing play-off berths for the Astana Arlans.As one of the three boxers to win for Astana on their away visit to Pohang, bantamweight Kanat Abutalipov notched up his sixth consecutive win of the season to finish first in the individual table and secure his place in the Individual Championship.
- Dolce & Gabbana Milano Thunder – So Close and Yet So Far
Dolce & Gabbana Milano Thunder had excelled in the home ring on Friday night with a 4-1 victory over the already-qualified Paris United that brought them tantalisingly close to the remaining play-off spot. But in the end there could be only one winner in the duel that has seen the two leading European sides within one point of each other for most of the season. But Milano Thunder are not out of the competition yet, with two of their boxers, middleweight Sergiy Derevyanchenko and heavyweight Clemente Russo both topping their weight categories in the individual standings to qualify for the Individual Championships in Guiyang, China at the end of May.
- Baku Fires End Regular Season in Style
The Baku Fires ended their regular season in style with a 5-0 clean sweep of the Beijing Dragons in their home ring at the Serhedchi Olmypic Sports Complex on Saturday, rounded off by a debut technical knock-out for their 30 year-old Russian Sergey Kharitinov. The Baku Fires finish top of the Asian conference standings as the best team overall, having suffered only two losses in their twelve matches since November last year.
- Moscow Kremlin Bears Finish Bottom of European Table
In the last conference match of the regular season, the Moscow Kremlin Bears edged ahead to a 3-2 home win against the Istanbulls. The Bears nevertheless finish bottom of the European table, since this was only their third win of the season.
The draw for the play-offs will take place on Monday, March 21 at the WSB headquarters in Lausanne and will be broadcast live on the WSB website. The semi-finals will then start on April 1-2, with the return legs taking place on April 15-16. The two finalists will meet in Guiyang, China on May 6-7 to compete for the title of World Series of Boxing champion and a 500, ,000 dollar purse. The Individual Championships will then follow in the same city two weeks later, on May 26-27
WSB Team Standings
2010 – 2011
|1||Los Angeles Matadors||25||8||4||12||40||20||0||60|
|2||Mexico City Guerreros||25||8||4||12||36||24||0||60|
|2||Dolce & Gabbana Milano Thunder||27||8||4||12||36||22||2||60|
World Series of Boxing (WSB) News and Updates
LA Matadors Qualify for Play-Offs After 4-1 Home Win Over Mexico City Guerreros
Monday, 14h March
In a venue befitting of the theatrics that played out between two superb teams Monday night, a packed Avalon Theatre unveiled a show that had all the intensity of some of boxing’s biggest fight nights. With a playoff spot on the line, the evening’s duel had been dubbed “The Brawl to Settle it All”. The brawl was ultimately controlled by the Los Angeles Matadors, who cruised to a 4-1 win over the Mexico City Guerreros.
With the win, the Matadors booked their place in the play-offs, which start on April 1, and extended their record against Mexico City to 3-1 for the regular season. In dispatching the Guerreros Monday night, the Matadors also put an end to the five-game winning streak held by their Southern rivals.
Sunday, 13th March
What looked like a dismal season only four weeks ago has suddenly turned positive for the Memphis Force as they continued their strong late season surge with another 3-2 win against the Miami Gallos in Miami Sunday night.
The Gallos were back at home to take on the Force at the Fillmore Miami Beach in the fourth and final meet between the two teams in the inaugural WSB season, with the Gallos looking to even the score after dropping two out of the three matches to Memphis.
Astana Arlans Shut Out Baku Fires 5-0
Saturday, 12th March
The Astana Arlans handed the visiting international boxers from conference leaders Baku Fires a 5-0 drubbing in front of their home crowd at the Daulet Sports Complex today and not only considerably improved their chances of qualifying for the play-offs but even moved in a position to claim the conference leadership if they beat the Pohang Poseidons away next weekend.
Monday – 28 February
Guerrero Win Sets Up Pivotal WSB Americas Showdown
Monday – 28 February
On a picture-perfect postcard evening only a true Floridian could love, it was the Mexico City Guerreros who made Miami their home Sunday night, dominating the action at the Solare Coliseum in Doral. Boxing under the stars in their new outdoor home venue, the Miami Gallos lost for the first time in Miami as the Guerreros came into the Gallos’ home and took a 4-1 victory in Week 10 action for the World Series of Boxing (WSB).
For the Mexico City Guerreros, it continues a hot streak they hope will last two more weeks as they have now won five matches in a row to push their record to 7-3 and to vault ahead of the Los Angeles Matadors for first place in the league standings. Week 10 action moves to the West coast Monday as the Los Angeles Matadors get set to host the Memphis Force hoping to keep pace with the red-hot Guerreros.
Asked about his team’s recent success in the ring, Guerreros head coach Francisco Bonilla said this matter-of-factly: “From day one, no matter what we’ve been faced with, we’ve always have had a winning attitude. Success in battle is not a matter of luck but rather it is the result of discipline and the hard work. That’s why we’re allowed to think that we can win.”
For the Gallos, the season has turned to disappointment as the team falls to 3-6 on the year with the squad having put forth a losing effort in each of the last four contests.
In the bantamweight bout, WSB newcomer Oscar Negrete (Barranquilla, Colombia)earned his first victory over Paulo Carvhalo (Gandu Bahia, Brazil), but his fate wasn’t determined until he outworked Carvhalo in the fifth and final round. Negrete used a combination of head and body blows in the hard-fought fifth round and then had to wait out an ever-so-close split decision that ultimately favored the Colombian boxer, 48-47, 47-48, 48-47. Carvhalo falls to 0-2 in WSB action.
In the second bout of the evening, Jordan Gutierrez (Queretaro, Mexico) of the Mexico City Guerreros completely overwhelmed Adrian Martinez (Milwaukee, Wis.) to earn a 49-46, 49-46, 50-45 decision in the middleweight weight class. Martinez has yet to record a win in the inaugural season of the WSB and is now 0-3, while Gutierrez improves to 2-1.
Middleweight (73 kg/160 lbs) Gallo William Williams (Conyers, Ga.) and Guerrero Josip Duric (Zagreb, Croatia) began the third match with both fighters coming out strong. It was Williams, however, who figured out Duric’s game plan, wearing him down with head and body punches. After opening a cut over Duric’s right eye, Williams pulled ahead of the Croatian and finished the bout strong for the win, 49-46, 49-46, 50-45. After a season-opening loss, Williams has now won three straight matches and has the best record of any Gallos fighter. Duric’s WSB record is 1-1.
“I felt pretty good going into the fight, but I knew I had to pace myself,” said Williams. “My dad said that I had to be patient, so that was my focus. Once I opened the cut over his eye I wanted to hit that cut on every shot, I tried to stay calm and focus on that.”
For two rounds, it seemed as if WSB newcomer Jeysson Monroy (Medellin, Colombia) would have his way with another WSB boxer making his season debut, Ahmed Elbiali (Sunny Isles, Fla.). But one punch changed all that for Elbiali. Unfortunately for the raw but game Gallos fighter it wasn’t enough to overcome the more experienced Guerrero combatant with Monroy securing the team win for Mexico City 49-46, 49-46, 49-46.
Heavyweights (91+ kg/201+ lbs) Craig Lewis (Detroit, Mich.) and Jose Payares (Caracas, Venezuela) closed out the evening in what would be a very close match. Lewis was the aggressor throughout, though Payares was able to elude enough punches to secure the win, 48-47, 48-47, 48-47. Lewis is now 0-4 on the season while Payares remains undefeated at 2-0.
Tonight’s win for the Guerreros and a possible LA victory against Memphis Monday night, sets up the showdown of the season that will take place Monday, March 14 at the Avalon Hollywood in a battle of the Americas that will go a long way in deciding the WSB league-winner.
- BakuFires and Astana Arlans Both on Track for the Play-Offs
In the WSB Asian conference, Baku Fires and Astana Arlans both took decisive steps towards the play-offs this weekend with convincing shut-outs of their opponents.
The Baku Fires recovered from their first defeat last week against the Pohang Poseidons to exact revenge in their usual style with a 5-0 away win against the same team on Saturday (26 Feb – 2011).
The Astana Arlans took a 5-0 home victory against the Beijing Dragons on Sunday to end the weekend five points behind leaders Baku with only two weeks of the regular season left.