Team USA Goes Undefeated in Semifinal Action at the Olympic Boxing Test Event in Beijing

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – All four United States competitors have advanced to the championship round with semifinal victories on Wednesday at the Beijing Workers’ Indoor Arena in Beijing, China. Featherweight Raynell Williams (Cleveland, Ohio) and lightweight Sadam Ali (Brooklyn, N.Y.) both recorded their third victories of the tournament while heavyweight Deontay Wilder (Tuscaloosa, Ala.) and super heavyweight Michael Hunter (Las Vegas, Nev.) earned their second wins of the event..

Williams battled Russia’s Afanasy Poskachin of Russia in semifinal action and won an impressive 34-14 decision over Poskachin. Williams will face Arturo Santos of Mexico in the finals.

Ali took on the Republic of South Africa’s Owethu Mbira in semifinal round action and he emerged with a convincing victory as well. Ali defeated Mbira by 26-10 margin to move on to the championship bout, where he will battle Serik Yeleuov of Kazakhstan.
Wilder followed his international debut with a tremendous tiebreaker victory over Russia’s Vadim Lihkman. The two were tied at four after the first round and the bout remained close throughout the eight minutes of boxing. Wilder pulled out a 26-26 tiebreaker win over Likhman to join his teammates in final round competition. He will take on Daniel Anthony Price of England in the championship bout.

Hunter closed the day with Kazakhstan’s Rustam Rygebayev in semifinal action on Wednesday. He faced a 17-13 deficit as the fourth round began, but would not be denied. Hunter came out charging in the fourth, outscoring Rygebayev, 11-3, over the final two minutes to win a 24-20 decision and a spot in final round competition. He will challenge Russia’s Denis Sergeev in the final championship contest on Thursday.

Final round action will be contested on Thursday at the Beijing Workers’ Indoor Arena. The United States boasts the most final round competitors with four vying for a gold medal in the event. All 11 U.S. Olympians made the trip to China for the test event and a USA/China/Kazakhstan Dual, which will be contested November 24-25 in Zunyi City in the Gui Zhou Province of China.

U.S. Semifinal Results
125 lbs/57 kg: Raynell Williams, Cleveland, Ohio/USA dec. Afansay Poskachin, RUS, 34-14
132 lbs/60 kg: Sadam Ali, Brooklyn, N.Y./USA dec. Owethu Mbira, RSA, 26-10
201 lbs/91 kg: Deontay Wilder, Tuscaloosa, Ala./USA dec. Vadim Lihman, RUS, 26-26
201+ lbs/91+ kg: Michael Hunter, Las Vegas, Nev./USA dec. Rustam Rygebayev, KAZ, 24-20

USA Boxing, as the national governing body for Olympic-style boxing, is the United States’ member organization of the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) and a member of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).

Article posted on 19.11.2007

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