The Golden Gloves Tournament is traditionally one of the last elite European competitions of the year, and the 2014 edition was held in the hall in Vrnjacka Banja, which was named by legendary Serbian basketball player Vlade Divac.
Serbia’s Boxing Federation hosted four international tournaments this year, as well as other women’s and youth events, and this competition was a perfect end to a fine boxing year for the country.
The Russian squad achieved four gold medals in Serbia, while the hosts and Azerbaijan both bagged three first places in Vrnjacka Banja, making the 57th edition of the Golden Gloves Tournament one of the most entertaining editions in history.
Athlete of the tournament
Serbia’s Aleksandar Drenovak achieved his career highlight at the 2011 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan where he advanced to the Top 8, and followed that success up by competing in the London 2012 Olympic Games where he defeated Ecuador’s APB boxer Marlo Delgado before losing to Turkey’s Adem Kilicci in the last 16.
Following his semi-final triumph over Russia’s Sukhrob Sidikov in his home tournament, the Serbian Middleweight class (75 kg) boxer had to meet for the gold with Ukraine’s Vladyslav Voitalyuk who was the silver medallist at the 2013 Sportaccord World Combat Games.
The veteran Serbian star managed to win the final against his tough rival, to cap off a marvelous tournament in front of his home fans.
Team of the tournament
The Russian delegation achieved four gold medals at the Golden Gloves Tournament in Serbia to top the team rankings.
Russian National Championships silver medallist Bator Sagaluyev used his strength to beat Azerbaijan’s Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Champion teenager Rufat Huseynov in the opening final of the competition, while Sportaccord World Combat Games silver medallist Vyacheslav Tashkarakov defeated another boxer from Azerbaijan, Elnur Shafiyev, winning the bout by unanimous decision.
Darman Kutubekov won the Bantamweight class (56 kg) against Ukraine’s Stanislav Batiy, and Russian U22 National Champion Pavel Silyagin delivered their fourth gold medal after beating Azerbaijan’s Elvin Gambarov at the Light Heavyweight class (81 kg).
Surprise of the tournament
Serbia’s new Lightweight (60 kg) boxer Milos Jankovic joined the elite level in January before claiming a silver medal at their National Championships in March, and the 19-year-old local boxer won his gold medal bout over a top rival, Ukraine’s former EUBC European Junior Continental Champion Oleksandr Melenyuk in a contest which ended with a unanimous decision verdict in favour of Jankovic.
Ones to watch
Azerbaijan’s Teymur Mammadov had very successful years in 2011 and 2012 when he bagged medals in major events such as at the London 2012 Olympic Games, the 2011 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Baku and at the 2011 EUBC European Continental Championships in Ankara, but has had a quiet few years since then.
Still just 21-years-old, Mammadov stormed back to form in Serbia, winning the gold medal in the Heavyweight class (91 kg) by defeating Ukraine’s Ivan Yukhta.
Stat/fact of the tournament
The last edition of the Golden Gloves Tournament was held in 2012 and none of the winners of that competition were able to defend their titles over the weekend.
Sweden had one finalist in the Golden Gloves Tournament, Danas Pozniakas Youth Memorial Tournament winner Oliver Flodin who is only 18 and has competed with success at youth level.
The Golden Gloves Tournament was his first ever international event out of Sweden and only Ukraine’s Sergiy Bohachuk could beat him.
Montenegro’s Golden Gong Tournament winner and AIBA Junior World Championships competitor Emir Sabotic also advanced to the final of the Golden Gloves Tournament despite being just 19, before he was defeated by Serbia’s strong Denis Memetovic.
List of the winners in the Golden Gloves Tournament
49 kg: Bator Sagaluyev, Russia
52 kg: Vyacheslav Tashkarakov, Russia
56 kg: Darman Kutubekov, Russia
60 kg: Milos Jankovic, Serbia
64 kg: Valeh Ramazanov, Azerbaijan
69 kg: Sergiy Bohachuk, Ukraine
75 kg, Group A: Aleksandar Drenovak, Serbia
75 kg, Group B: Denis Memetovic, Serbia
81 kg: Pavel Silyagin, Russia
91 kg: Teymur Mammadov, Azerbaijan
+91 kg: Kamran Mehdiyev, Azerbaijan