Raynell Williams and Shawn Estrada add to the United States’ Win Total at the 2007 AIBA World Championships

(CHICAGO, ILL.) – 2007 AIBA World Championships action rolled into day two on Wednesday with three sessions on tap at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, Ill. Featherweight Raynell Williams (Cleveland, Ohio) and middleweight Shawn Estrada (Downey, Calif.) got their U.S. team off to a winning start with victories in their first round contests. Williams entered the ring with 2004 Olympian Khedafi Djelkhir of France as the far less experienced boxer, but he emerged victorious following four rounds of boxing at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, taking a 28-18 victory. Estrada put an early end to his bout with Israel’s Artur Zlatopolski, winning a mandatory stoppage on the 20-point rule in the final seconds of the third round..

Williams, the first U.S. boxer to compete in the second day of action at the 2007 World Championships, rode a strong first round to his first World Championships win. The action was quick-paced from the opening bell with Djelkhir pressing Williams and the American countering the French boxer beautifully, building a commanding 12-2 lead after the first round of boxing. The pace slowed slightly in the second stanza, but Williams maintained his advantage, enjoying a 15-5 edge at the midway mark. The final two rounds told a similar tale, with Djelkhir pressing the action in the final round, but Williams held on to win a 28-18 final decision.

“He kept trying to put pressure on me so I was just trying to circle and counter him with combinations. They told me to throw a lot of straight punches because he was coming forward and he would run right in to it,” Williams said. “It feels very good (to beat an Olympian), it’s a good start for me. I had to get the ring rust off today and after this, it will be wonderful.”

It was the second round that catapulted Estrada to his convincing stoppage victory over Zlatopolski. Estrada held a small 2-0 lead after the first two minutes of boxing, but he came out on fire in the second round, scoring 12 points to move out to a 14-1 edge at the halfway point of the bout. He continued to apply pressure in the third round despite the Israeli’s dirty tactics, which included tackling Estrada to the ground. Yet he never lost his cool, continuing to pile on the points en route to a 25-5 lead and the mandatory stoppage victory.

“I just tried to pick it up (in the second round), and listen to the corner because they are always right. I tried to score points as soon as possible; I was just trying to take the lead,” Estrada said. “The first round I just wanted to feel him out and see what he had and after that I got up on points and protected the lead. In the first round I saw that he was just trying to fight rough so I just kept my composure and tried to box him. I stayed focused, listened to the coaches and they told me to box him. I didn’t want to lose my head and get hot-headed.”

Williams will face Kazakhstan’s Mazat Ospanov in second round action while Estrada battles Ryota Murata of Japan. The two boxers will both take the ring again on Saturday, August 27.

Raynell Williams quotes
“I’ve been training for this, and doing a lot of strength and conditioning. I kept the lead throughout the whole bout. All of the training, good coaches and support all came together today.”

“This is the biggest win in my career because its my first big international tournament and its an Olympic qualifier. I feel good about it.”

“I have a good team around me, a second time Olympian, a Pan Am gold medalist, a Pan Am silver medalist, and they all push me to go forward.”

“It feels great to box in front of the hometown crowd and hear them chanting U-S-A, it gives me more motivation to go on.”

“He tried to rough me up (in the fourth round), but it was all right, I kept my cool.”

Shawn Estrada quotes

“I came here to show the world that we have a good middleweight, we’re ready to box and bring home the gold.”

“East LA has its beautiful spots and it got me here. I have a lot of people who support me and keep me going. It’s a beautiful place, you should come, we have the best tacos in the world.”

“I was born here in America, I’m a Mexican-American born in East LA. I am studying fire technology, I’m going to become a fire fighter. It’s something, along with boxing, that I have wanted to do since I was small.”

“Dan is a good coach, he’s a good guy, he’s like a father figure. He talks to us as grown men, he does a good job, he is a good man.”

U.S. Results
125 lbs/57 kg: Raynell Williams, Cleveland, Ohio/USA dec. Khedafi Djelkhir, FRA, 28-18
165 lbs/75 kg: Shawn Estrada, Downey, Calif./USA stopped Artur Zlatopolski, POL, RSCO-3

Article posted on 24.10.2007

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