Boxing

Braehmer defeats Meroro; Balszay stops Sartison; Gomez, Chagaev, Menzer and Chakhkiev also win

By Michael Collins: WBA World super middleweight champion Karoly Balzsay (25-2, 18 KO's) scored a 12th round TKO over former World Boxing Association 168 pound champion Dimitri Sartison (29-2, 18 KO's) on Saturday night in a very close fight at the Sport and Congress Center, Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. Balzsay, 32, knocked th 32-year-old Sartison down with a right hand early in the round in what looked like a flash knockdown.

However, after Sartison got back up, Balzsay flurried on him until the referee jumped in and halted the fight at 2:25 of the round. It looked like Sartison was still okay, but given that he wasn't punching back at the time of the stoppage, it's somewhat understandable that the referee halted the fight. I had Sartison well ahead at the time the fight was halted. I wasn't impressed with either fighter at all. Balzsay is considered a paper champion by a lot of boxing fans, and this performance did little to convince me that he's in the same class as the other top super middleweights in the division. It just looked like a fight between two flawed German-based super middleweights for the consumption of the German audience.

Sartison was the much more active of the two with the better power and snap on his punches. Balzsay looked like he won the 4th and 10th rounds, while Sartison controlled the rest of the fight with his hard combinations. Balszay's problem was that he lacked power and was mostly jabbing and even in that, he didn't look good. His jab lacks power, and his combinations looked little better than arm punches. He's one of those technical, non-punching fighters that stays busy but lacks power in a big way.

Balzsay is keeping the WBA title warm until someone good comes along and thrashes him.

***

In another dull mismatch on the card, former WBO light heavyweight champion Juergen Braehmer (38-2, 30 KO's) easily defeated little known fighter Vikapita Meroro (21-4, 89 KO's) by a 10 round unanimous decision. Meroro came into the fight having lost two out of his last three fights and basically had no chance little most of the opponents that were picked out to face the German based stars on this card.

The final judges' scores were 98-92, 99-91 and 97-92. Braehmer knocked Meroro down with a left hook in the fourth round. Other than that, it was a pretty boring fight with the 33-year-old Braehmer continually bouncing on the soles of his feet, jabbing and mostly landing one shot at a time. Meroro was the quicker fighter and landed the cleaner shots, but he didn't have the size or the work rate to make this a competitive bout. Braehmer ended up with swelling underneath his right eye by the end of the fight from Meroro hard shots. But mostly, Meroro looked like a fighter that one division above his optimal weight. He'd be better off fighting at 168 or better yet, 160 rather than fighting guys at 175 and not having the size to compete.

Braehmer dominated every round of this fight, and although the judges gave Meroro some rounds, I saw those as mercy rounds because I couldn't see where he won even one round in this mismatch.

Hopefully, Braehmer doesn't waste too much time facing soft opposition because he's already wasted so much of his career as it is with inactivity.

***

In an upset, Ante Bilic (27-2, 13 KO's) defeated World Boxing Organization (WBO) European middleweight champion Rafael Bejaran (14-2, 6 KO's) by a 12 round unanimous decision.

***

Undefeated featherweight contender Marcel Meyerdiercks (22-0, 5 KO's) defeated Santiago Allione (19-8-1, 7 KO's) by a 12 round unanimous decision to capture the vacant WBO Inter-Continental featherweight title. Meyerdiercks, #11 WBO, #15 WBC, showed little power, however, in tapping out an easy decision against yet another over-matched opponent on the card. I can't see Meyerdiercks winning a title in the division due to his complete lack of power. He's better suited for the amateur ranks.

***

38-year-old Juan Carlos Gomez (50-3, 38 KO's) survived a 3rd round knockdown by 37-year-old journeyman Darnell Wilson (24-15-3, 20 KO's) to get a controversial 4th round TKO when the fight was halted in the 4th after Wilson suffered a cut over his right eye from a head clash. The cut didn't look like a bad one, however, and it may have saved Gomez from getting beaten because he was badly hurt in the previous round and he looked terrible.

Gomez, who looked fatter than usual, won the first two rounds based on his higher activity. Wilson only attempted a handful of punches and missed most of them wildly.

The fight turned around in the 3rd when Wilson landed a crushing right hand near the end of the round that had Gomez out on his feet. Luckily for him, the knockdown came at the end of the round because Wilson likely would have finished him off if there was more time left in the round.

Overall, I thought it was a terrible stoppage of the fight due to the non-serious looking cut. Like I said, I think the stoppage saved Gomez from getting beaten. In the big scheme of things, it really doesn't matter, though, because I don't see Gomez going anywhere. He may have gotten through this fight, but he's going to have major problems unless they keep matching him against C level opponents. It would be sad if Gomez were to get another title shot by facing nothing but guys like Wilson for the next couple of years. It's probably going to take that long for Gomez to get ranked high enough for another title shot. When and if that times comes, he'll get blown out.

***

Former WBA heavyweight champion Ruslan Chagaev (29-2-1, 18 KO's) had his way with journeyman Billy Zumbrun (25-13-1, 15 KO's), stopping him in the 3rd round. Chagaev, 33, knocked the 39-year-old Zumbrun down twice in the 3rd round before it was halted at 1:26 of the round. The first knockdown pretty much ended the fight, as Chagaev landed a hard left uppercut that caught Zumbrun in the nose, appearing to break it. The shot knocked Zumbrun down. He got up and was flurried on by Chagaev along the ropes until taken out with a right-left combination that put Zumbrun down for the second and final time in the round.

***

Undefeated crusierweight contender Rakhim Chakhkiev (13-0, 10 KO's) destroyed former contestant from The Contender Jaidon Codrington (20-3, 16 KO's) by a 1st round TKO. Codrington, 27, hadn't fought since October 2010 when he fought at light heavyweight. His best weight was 168lbs, and he didn't look good facing the much naturally bigger Chakhkiev in the crusierweight class. Chakhkiev, 29, knocked Codrington down with a left to the body early in the 1st round. After the action resumed, Chakhkiev backed Codrington up to the corner and unloaded with a blizzard of punches ending with a left-right to the head that put Codrington down for the second and final time in the round. The fight was halted at 1:56 of the round by referee Jurgen Langos.

Chakhkiev, #7 WBC, #12 WBO, needs to face better opposition than this if he wants to continue to improve as a fighter. His German handlers aren't doing him any favors by putting him in against rusty fighters out of their weight class like Codrington.

***

In another huge mismatch on this card, former WIBF/WBC female featherweight champion Ina Menzer (29-1, 10 KO's) had her way with an over-matched 36-year-old Austrian Doris Koehler (8-11-1, 3 KO's), beating her by an eight round unanimous decision. Koehler mostly just took shots in every round without throwing much back. She tried to land shots, but Menzer would back away and use her longer reach, quicker hands and bigger shots to dominate the action. Every round saw Menzer just teeing off on a punching back that was just soaking up punishment. I had a hard time understanding why this fight was made in the first place. I mean, with Menzer having formerly held major titles before losing them to Jeannine Garside in July 2010, she should be facing better quality opposition than you would think. I could understand Menzer facing someone like Koehler if this was the first fight coming off of the loss to Garside, but not three fights later. It's a waste.

Article posted on 22.04.2012



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