The last matches of the preliminary stages was held today at the 2015 EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships, where boxers from the Flyweight (52 kg) Lightweight (60 kg), Welterweight (69 kg) and Light Heavyweight (81 kg) weight classes were all in action.
Bout of the day
Italy’s 2009 AIBA World Boxing Champion Domenico Valentino has also competed in three Olympic Games, and is one of the most talented boxers in AIBA Pro Boxing.
The Italian Lightweight competed in an incredibly entertaining bout on Day 5, when he won by split decision against Belarus’ EUBC European Continental Championships silver medallist Vazgen Safaryants.
Valentino is a tactical maestro with over a decade of experience at the elite of level of boxing, but he had to work incredibly hard against the Belarusian veteran.
All three rounds resulted in both athletes clearly displaying their excellent skills, but it was the Italian who was narrowly better, and he will next face Great Britain’s Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Joseph Cordina in the quarter-finals.
Team of the day
Great Britain’s young, but dangerous squad enjoyed a perfect day as three of their boxers advanced through to the quarter-finals in Samokov.
Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games bronze medallist Muhammad Ali won all of his bouts against European youth rivals last year, and his elite career is progressing well after he defeated Alexandr Riscan for the second time in 2015.
Joseph Cordina also continued his successful tournament with a spectacular triumph over Poland’s Dawid Michelus.
The third Great British victory was achieved by Bocskai Memorial Tournament winner Joshua Buatsi, who eliminated Estonian Light Heavyweight Ainar Karlson.
Surprises of the day
A day of surprises occurred at Flyweight, beginning with a win for Belgium’s Dodji Ayigah over Belarus’ Siarhei Loban.
Ukraine’s Ihor Sopinskiy then produced a battling performance to defeat Slovakia’s Baku 2015 European Games bronze medalist Viliam Tanko.
Hungary’s Nandor Csoka has only been boxing for four years, but displayed his burgeoning potential by defeating Turkey’s EUBC European Continental Championships bronze medallist Ferhat Pehlivan.
Russia’s Adlan Abdurashidov is one of the most highly regarded Lightweight boxers in the world, and showed his fearsome skill with a tactical masterclass against Lithuania’s Edgaras Skurdelis.
Hungary’s Balazs Bacskai eliminated Germany’s AIBA World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Araik Marutjan in the first Welterweight preliminary round, but failed to continue his winning run when he was beaten by Lithuania’s Eimantas Stanionis.
Irish boxers took their record in Bulgaria to 2-1 against Russian opponents, when London 2012 Olympian Adam Nolan achieved a brilliant unanimous decision victory against WSB star Radzhab Butayev.
Fresh off a great season in the World Series of Boxing, Croatia’s Hrvoje Sep continued his good form by defeating Spain’s new national team member Alejandro Camacho at Light Heavyweight.
A potential rival for Sep in Bulgaria could be Bulgaria’s Baku 2015 European Games Test Event winner Radoslav Pantaleev, who stopped Montenegro’s Bosko Draskovic in decisive fashion.
Fact of the day
After five spectacular competition days, 80 boxers remain in the EUBC European Confederation Continental Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria, represented by 27 different nations:
- Bulgaria, Great Britain: 7 boxers
- Russia: 6 boxers
- Turkey: 5 boxers
- Armenia, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Ukraine: 4 boxers
- Belarus, Croatia, Georgia, Italy: 3 boxers
- France, Germany, Hungary, Lithuania, Moldova, Romania: 2 boxers
- Azerbaijan, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Sweden: 1 boxer
Quotes of the day
“Firstly we planned to attack my opponent because we are aware of the fact he is really strong and has got great a physical condition. My coach Mr. Kravtsov realised that Skurdelis was boxing in a different way, and we knew after the first round that I could operate from long range. I was not tired afterwards, and will now be spending the night and morning to analyse my next quarter-final opponent,” said Russia’s Adlan Abdurashidov who eliminated Lithuania’s Edgaras Skurdelis at Lightweight.
“I did exactly what I planned to before my fight against my technical opponent. I pressured my opponent, and combined punches to the head and body. I lost to the Hungarian two years ago, but now I am more experienced. I have been boxing in APB, so I am not tired after the three rounds,” commented Lithuania’s Eimantas Stanionis.
“Adam Nolan was absolutely brilliant today against Russia’s Radzhab Butayev. He boxed out of his skin in Samokov. Adam showed tremendous courage and a will to win against such a quality opponent as the Russian,” said Peter O’Donnell, Ireland’s team manager after Adam Nolan’s performance at Welterweight class (69 kg).
The quarter-finals will be held on the sixth competition of the EUBC European Confederation Continental Championships.