By Alexey Sukachev at ringside
Middleweight prospect Dmitry Pirog (15-0, 12 KOs) became the first one to stop tough American competitor Eric Mitchell (22-7-1, 11 KOs) inside the scheduled distance. Mitchell gave WBO #2, WBC #4 Pirog fits in the first two rounds but then gradually succumbed to the combinational power and diversity of the Russian contender. The contest was stopped at 1:07 of the fifth round, when Mitchell signalized he was in no condition to continue. Pirog reportedly became the WBO mandatory challenger after this victory.
In what was advertised as the main event of the evening, Uzbek stylist Timur Ibragimov (27-2-1, 15 KOs) acquired a vacant IBA intercontinental heavyweight title with the third-round stoppage of Tanzanian Awadh Tamim (11-2, 6 KOs). Tamim was down three times before the bout was stopped by referee Jon Schorle.
In a walkout clash, which should have been set at least as the co-main event of the evening, two unbeaten bantamweights engaged into a horrific two-way brawl, which have stunned the remaining public and brought to the birth the first obvious candidate for fight of the year in Russia. WBO #10 bantamweight 26-year old Sahib Usarov (14-0, 6 KOs) was much more experienced than 23-year old unranked Uzbek super bantamweight Ilhom Rahimov (6-1, 4 KOs) but the latter forced Usarov to fight at the edge of his limits and to dig deep to win this fight. Both fighters delivered a non-stop action with numerous lightning-fast exchanges, combinational punching and technically sound defense but Usarov’s experience was a decisive factor. At the end of the eight-rounder, which was fought at featherweight limit, two judges saw it for Usarov – 79-75 and 80-73, while the third one scored the bout a draw 77-77. Fightnews saw it 77-75 – for Sahib Usarov, who was involved in the toughest collision of his career so far.
It took heavyweight banger Magomed Abdusalamov (7-0, 7 KOs) just 84 seconds to completely demolish hugely overmatched Kenyan Raymond Ochieng (20-10-3, 17 KOs) in what turned to be a horrible mismatch. Ochieng was floored three times after looping right hands and showed no will and no ability to resist Abdusalamov’s powerful onslaught. The Dagestani is yet to see the second round.
Welterweight prospect Vitaly Demyanenko (18-0, 11 KOs) both kept his unbeaten record intact and retained WBO Asia Pacific and PABA belts with a masterful display of skill against Argentinean tough guy Jorge Daniel Miranda (34-8, 13 KOs). All three judges scored it lopsidedly for WBO #9, WBA #10 and WBC #12 Kazakh southpaw counterpuncher, who kept his foe at bay with single left hands and overhand right hooks as well as with wise movement across the ring. Fightnews saw it 119-109 – for Demyanenko.
Roman Simakov (10-1-1, 6 KOs) got the better of overmatched Ukrainian Vasyl Kondor (18-9-1, 8 KOs) in one-sided fashion. There were no knockdowns but the fight was stopped at 0:22 of the fifth round after another brutal assault by Simakov.
Also, heavyweight Alexey Soloviev (17-0, 11 KOs) scored a unanimous decision in a six-round stinker versus no-hoper Emin Gyulmamedov (0-2).