The superb quarter-finals of the 2015 EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships delighted the watching crowd in Samokov, Bulgaria today.

All ten weight classes were in action across two sessions on a busy sixth competition day, where the winners of each bout not only earned a guaranteed bronze medal and a place in the semi-finals, but they also achieved a qualification quota for the AIBA World Boxing Championships.

Bout of the day

Bulgaria’s Daniel Asenov reached the finals of the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games, the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships and the EUBC European Youth Continental Championships last year, and moved one step closer to another significant gold medal bout by defeating Ukraine’s Ihor Sopinskiy.

Both the 18-year-old Asenov and fast Flyweight (52 kg) Sopinskiy attacked with great gusto from the very beginning of the bout, with the fast hands of the Bulgarian helping Asenov narrowly edge the ferocious exchanges.

In the remaining two rounds, the excellent stamina of Asenov allowed him to take control of the contest, and he was cheered on strongly by his home supporters in Bulgaria.

Asenov’s victory has ensured a guaranteed medal in this event, and he will next face  Hungary’s Nandor Csoka for a place in the Flyweight final.

Team of the day

Great Britain remain the most successful nation in Bulgaria after a superb quarter-finals day which saw six of their athletes reach the semi-finals of their respective weight classes.

Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games bronze medallist Muhammad Ali opened the Great British run with a disciplined Flyweight victory over Armenia’s former EUBC European Youth Continental Champion Koryun Soghomonyan.

20-year-old Light Flyweight (49 kg) Harvey Horn then produced a great performance to defeat Poland’s Dawid Jagodzinski by unanimous decision.

Baku 2015 European Games bronze medallist Qais Ashfaq established a hat-trick of British wins with a brilliant Bantamweight (56 kg) success over Ukraine’s AIBA World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Mykola Butsenko.

Lightweight class (60 kg) star Joseph Cordina also eliminated a strong rival when he outperformed Italy’s former AIBA World Champion Domenico Valentino.

Cordina’s powerful punches stunned Valentino in the opening round, and following the decision of the ringside doctor the British boxer advanced to the semi-finals.

Former AIBA Junior World Champion Pat McCormack competed in a tough match against Spain’s Johann Eduardo Orozco at Light Welterweight (64 kg), but ultimately prevailed to reach the next round.

The sixth British success was delivered by Bocskai Memorial Tournament winner Joshua Buatsi who beat Poland’s Mateusz Tryc at Light Heavyweight (81 kg).

Surprises of the day

Russian National Championships silver medallist Adlan Abdurashidov was one of the gold medal favourites in the Lightweight division, but was surprisingly defeated by Georgia’s Otar Eranosyan.

A second shock Russian defeat occurred at Super Heavyweight (91+ kg) when London 2012 Olympian and EUBC European Continental Champion Magomed Omarov lost to Bulgaria’s Petar Belberov.

The Round-Up

Although two Russian boxers lost on Day 6, four of their athletes qualified for the semi-finals, beginning with Light Flyweight Vasilii Egorov who defeated Spain’s 19-year-old Samuel Carmona Heredia.

Their further winners included Vitaliy Dunaytsev who beat Moldova’s EUBC European Continental Championships silver medallist Dmitri Galagot at Light Welterweight (64 kg), WSB star Middleweight (75 kg) Petr Khamukov, and AIBA World Boxing Championships silver medallist Heavyweight (91 kg) Evgeny Tishchenko.

Hungary’s Nandor Csoka continued his dream tournament in Bulgaria by controlling his key quarter-final with Belgium’s Dodji Ayigah.

Netherlands’ Chemistry Cup winner Max Van der Pas suffered a loss to Poland’s WSB supremo Tomasz Jablonski at Middleweight.

Armenia’s Aram Avagyan delivered a deserved medal for his nation following a great performance against Romania’s EUBC European Continental Championships bronze medallist Razvan Andreiana.

Spain’s Boxam Tournament winner Youba Ndiaye Sissokho is impressing many onlookers in Bulgaria, especially after his triumph over Czech Republic’s London 2012 Olympian Zdenek Chladek at Welterweight (69 kg).

Croatia’s Hrvoje Sep defeated Bulgaria’s Radoslav Pantaleev in a great Light Heavyweight (81 kg) battle, while Latvia achieved their first European Championships medal since 2008 courtesy of Nikolajs Grisunins.

Fact of the day

Boxers from the following nations have achieved guaranteed medals in the EUBC European Confederation Continental Championships:

  • Great Britain: 6 medals
  • Bulgaria: 5 medals
  • Russia: 4 medals
  • Ireland: 3 medals
  • Croatia, Georgia, Italy, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Spain: 2 medals
  • Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Romania, Sweden: 1 medal

Quote of the day

“My first thoughts after winning my quarter-final was to think about my father, my mother and my whole family. I began boxing only four years ago, and now I am a medallist in a European Championships. It is still hard to believe I will be there in the semi-finals. I believe only in hard training, and this is the result,” said Hungary’s teenager Nandor Csoka who reached the semi-finals at Flyweight (52 kg).

Tomorrow’s program

After a rest day tomorrow, the semi-finals will be held on the seventh competition of the EUBC European Confederation Continental Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria.