World Series Boxing weekend review

Updated: January 17, 2012

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Ireland’s Willie McLaughlin notched his second win of the season in the World Series of Boxing in Milan to help Milano Thunder to a shut out 5-0 victory over Patrick Gallagher’s Mumbai Fighters.

McLaughlin earned an impressive (48-26,49-45,48-46) unanimous decision over India’s Jangra Mandeep in the WSB middleweight class. Here in conjunction with the WSB’s website is this week’s update.

The return World Series Boxing action confirms Dolce & Gabbana Milano Thunder and Baku Fires status as the teams to beat after both record emphatic wins against Venky’s Mumbai Fighters and Beijing Dragons respectively. Mexico City Guerreros dismantle Leipzig Leopards in Group B while the vastly improved Istanbul Bosphorus delight their fans with a classic against Paris United. Powerful Astana Arlans are just too good for the visiting Los Angeles Matadors as Dynamo Moscow show their ruthless streak with a win of their own against the Bangkok Elephants.

Match of the week:

New year new Istanbul Bosphorus as the Turkish outfit show their metal against Paris United. Having been billed as the one to watch, the action in this Group B clash was absolute top-drawer as the home team stylishly dominated their rivals at the Bagcilar Olipik Spor Kompleksi. An evening of quality boxing saw veteran Huseyin Dundar make an impressive debut in WSB with a smart display against Aleksandr Riscan as Jaba Khositashvili and Turkish winning machine Bahram Muzzafer also record victories. The long-awaited Heavyweight contest showcased the best of the division as Belarusian southpaw Viktar Zuyev puts in a masterclass against the giant Filip Hrgovic to delight the raucous crowds. The Istanbul Bosphorus camp will have been delighted not only to take the win here but with the impressive 4:1 scoreline, it looks like this new-look side has turned a corner and they will now approach their next match with renewed purpose. Watch the match again on WSB TV

Thrashing of the week:

This should have been a close contest in Group B with both teams very evenly matched on paper, however no one could have predicted how good the Mexico City Guerreros were going to be on the night as they completely overwhelmed their opponents. They were sensational against the visiting Leipzig Leopards as they recorded a sumptuous 5:0 win at fortress Foro Polanco. Bantamweight Braulio Avila Juarez was fast and furious in all his five rounds, continuously peppering his opponent with a flurry of combination punches. It was more of the same as Angel Gutierrez used a similar tactic to great effect in the Lightweight bout. Mladen Manev was made to work hard in his match against Dutch newcomer Danyo Stephen, but having sent his opponent to the canvas in the fourth round, in the end he survived a late charge to take the points victory. In keeping with the mood in the Guerreros camp, Kennedy Katende boxed perfectly against Enrico Kölling, never allowing him time to breathe or a moment’s peace as his unrelenting assaults had the man from Germany in all sorts of trouble throughout. Watch the match again on WSB TV

Fight of the week:

When unknown quantity Xiaohu Liu of the Beijing Dragons took to the ring against Baku Fires’ Semen Grivachev, many predicted the Azeri fighter would extend his winning sequence for the season, however the 24-year-old Liu had other ideas. Taking the fight to his opponent, Liu demonstrated an astute game plan to outbox the experienced Grivachev throughout this intriguing contest. It was a display of dominance that will have surprised many and Liu will now not be taken for granted the next time he takes to the ring.

Rest of the action:

The rivalry continues as Astana Arlans defeat Los Angeles Matadors to cement second spot in Group A. A real tight contest with Daniyar Tokbayev and Merey Akshalov both recording split decision wins in the first two fights of the evening before Kanat Slam is back to his old tricks with a TKO against Zaal Kvachatadze, his fourth TKO in his last five fights. With the overall victory for the team from the Kazak capital confirmed, Siarhei Karneyev got the consolation for the visiting Matadors before Ruslan Myrsatayev wrapped up proceedings with a clever performance against 2008 Olympic Games quarter-finalist Mohammed Arjaoui to give the Arlans a 4:1 win.

The irrepressible Dolce & Gabbana Milano Thunder demonstrated why we are running out of superlatives to describe their performances so far this season as they clinical dispatched the Venky’s Mumbai Fighters 5:0 at the Mediolanum Forum in Italy. None of the boxers from Mumbai had any answers to the well-drilled fighters of Milan as Vitaliy Volkov, Miklos Vargas and William McLaughlin quickly gave the home team an unassailable 3-0 lead. It was then the turn of the evenings star attraction Ludovic Groguhe to make his mark, the Frenchman has been in fine form this season and showed once again why the fans love him so much as his explosive style completely overpowered Marko Calic in all departments. Pride of Poland Michal Olas outclassed tough Moldovan Mihail Muntean in the Heavyweight contest to enhance his reputation as a rising star in this division. Watch the match again on WSB TV

Keeping pace with the standards set by Milano, Baku Fires continue to set the tone in Group B after yet another terrific away result. Making it six wins out of six, the Azeri outfit continues its pursuit of silverware in style. Well-equipped and battle-hardened, the Baku Fires have spoken of their desire to be recognised as the world No.1 boxing team and they are well on the path to achieving this status after cruising to a comprehensive 4:1 victory on the Beijing Dragons’ turf. Talented Gairbek Germankhanov immediately set the well oiled Baku Fires winning machine in motion as the 27-year-old orthodox top ranked Bantamweight outboxed Qingxian Mai. Ramazan Magomedau defeat of Jianzheng Wang in the penultimate contest of the night saw him move up to the second in the Light Heavyweight Individual Ranking, just behind team mate and compatriot Azamat Murtuzaliyev. The Fires are just an awesome proposition these days.

After having had an unfavourable schedule in the first part of the season, Dynamo Moscow are now able to show the competition what they are capable of. Following a sensational performance against the Bangkok Elephants, their 5:0 win saw them move up to third place in Group A. This victory was so comprehensive that their next opponents will surely be quacking in the boots. Southpaw Vazgen Safaryants, one of the stars of this team, extended his unbeaten record with a confident display against debutant Suphamongkhon Phongphira with Danil Shved also impressive in the Light Heavyweight fight. The fans in Moscow were then treated to a sensational TKO in the final Heavyweight battle as Vitaly Kudukhov threw a barrage of punches in the first round that had Anatolii Antoniuk in all sorts of trouble before a thunderous overhead right was quickly followed by a devastating left hook that saw Kudukhov triumph to the acclaim of his delighted corner. Watch the match again on WSB TV

Boxer of the week:

Look no further than Mexico City Guerreros’ Ecuadorian orthodox fighter Jorge Quinonez. Facing the taller and heavier Philipp Gruner, it took him less than a minute to emphatically win his Heavyweight contest. Rocking his opponent with a quality straight right to the temple, Quinonez sensed blood and immediately pounced as he followed up this shot with a devastating left right combination that sent Gruner sprawling to the canvas. What a way to introduce yourself to WSB.

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