Kim TKO's Marali, Wins IBO Title

Ji-Hoon Kim of Goyang City, South Korea, won the IBO junior lightweight title with a sensational upset tenth-round TKO win against defending champion Zolani “Untouchable” Marali in the main event at Emperors Palace in Kempton, South Africa, on September 12. The event was promoted by Rodney Berman’s Golden Gloves and Arthur Pelullo’s Banner Promotions, and televised live in South Africa on Supersport..

Promoter Art Pelullo said, “I want to congratulate Ji-Hoon on his spectacular win. He was going against some formidable odds - Marali is an excellent boxer and was fighting on his home turf with the entire crowd behind him – but Ji-Hoon did what he had to do. He kept the pressure on, steadily wore down Marali, and won by decisive knockout.

“Ji-Hoon has opened the doors for himself for bigger opportunities in the future with this win, and we have big plans for him that will be announced soon.”

WBC No. 6 ranked Marali, now 20-3 with 13 knockouts, of Mdantsane, South Africa, was making his first defense of the IBO title. The clear favorite to win, he boxed and moved effectively in the early rounds and dominated the scoring. But Kim, now 17-5 with 14 knockouts, constantly pressed forward and landed the more damaging punches - he bloodied Marali’s nose in the sixth round and rocked him with two right hands in the seventh.

Kim wore down Marali as the rounds progressed and scored two knockdowns, both with right hands, in the tenth round – Marali got up both times, but was on very unsteady legs after the second knockdown and the referee stopped the fight at 0:28.

Article posted on 13.09.2009

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