By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
In a tremendous action fight, former Contender star Peter Manfredo (31-7 17KO) scored a knockout victory over Walid Smichet (20-6-3 14KO) at 3:00 of the 7th round as boxing returned to the Casino de Montreal. Smichet came as advertised as an extremely hard nut to crack but Manfredo who would often go toe-to-toe with the tough Tunisian boxer had his boxing skills and power win out. A sweeping left hook put Smichet down and out just as the ten-second warning was sounded. “I was just too strong for him,” said Manfredo after the fight. “I only had three weeks to prepare for this but I felt good in there. I’m on my way back to 160 and right now John Duddy is the guy we’re after. Manfredo scored a third round knockdown of Smichet who tried his best to hold on but went down to his knees. Despite the setback, Smichet remained in pursuit throughout and managed to comeback on Manfredo in the round as The Pride of Providence couldn’t put the finishing touches on his opponent. But the damage was done and Manfredo proved to be unrelenting, staggering Smichet in the sixth before eventually ending things in the seventh.
The headline bout of the day featured Ali Chebah (30-1-1 23KO) scoring a second round knockout of Joel Juarez (23-6-1 22KO) with a straight right hand at 1:40 of the second round. Chebah from France, captures the NABF super-lightweight title and retains his WBC Youth title over 30 year-old Juarez.
Undefeated middleweight David Lemieux wasted no time in dispatching Thomas Davis (12-10-2 7KO), scoring his 15th knockout in as many tries at the :47 mark of the opening round. Lemieux almost immediately cornered and unleashed a furious combination against Davis who has managed to hand former world title holder Kendall Holt his first loss. Davis went reeling along the ropes and onto his knees where Lemieux motioned for him to get up, but a full ten count was served up by referee Alain Villeneuve.
There was no quit in London Ontario welterweight Frank Abbiw (3-2 1KO) who after losing the first five rounds on the scorecards to Benyamine Besmi (10-1 5KO) came back and scored a dramatic come from behind victory with a TKO victory over the previously undefeated fighter. “I was getting close to him in the last round,” said Abbiw after the fight. “He was sneaky but I stayed close, but as soon as he threw, I came right back with a counter right hand to finish it.” Finish it he did, with Besmi reeling, Abbiw jumped on the opportunity and brought Besmi down with another right, landing the undefeated fighter face down with his chin resting on the bottom rope. The Montreal fighter did his best and stumbled to his feet, but was clearly out of it and the fight was called. “He was an undefeated fighter, and now he knows what it means to lose,” said Abbiw who now has three wins a row. “I threw my power hand and the tree went down.”
Not fighting for five months certainly wasn’t a problem for welterweight Kevin Bizier (4-0 3KO) who wasted no time at all in destroying Ulisses Duarte (18-20-1 16KO) at just: 15 of the opening round. A left hook to the body on the fight’s first exchange had the Mexican crumpling down to the canvas where he would remain prone for the next two minutes. The fight that referee Marlon Wright called as Duarte laid on the canvas goes down as one of the quickest fights in Canadian history.
Heavyweight Ali Mansour (4-0 2KO) of Windsor, Ontario overwhelmed Ken Murphy (22-25-2 16KO) of Chicago, stopping the veteran at 2:23 of the second round. Murphy back-peddling from a busy Mansour had finally had enough and waived his right hand to signal ‘no more’; it was the most effective use of his right on the day. The fight returns Mansour who hopes to have ten fights by the end of the year back to Montreal to where he made his pro debut five years ago. “I throw between 100 and 120 punches a round which is huge for a heavyweight,” Mansour told Fightnews after the fight. “The plan today was to begin slowly and keep that rate going for the whole six rounds.”