The heavyweight division is the most unpredictable division in the sport, with fans knowing it just takes one punch to entirely change the course and the outcome of a fight. Case in point: last night’s jaw-droppingly fun, and wild, and sloppy and thoroughly entertaining slugfest between unbeaten prospect Efe Ajagba and seriously game journeyman Iago Kiladze.
Ajagba, a 25 year old with a big punch and a rock-solid physique, was looking to take Kiladze out and he almost did in round-two. A huge right hand to the head put the 33 year old from Georgia flat on his back, seemingly ending the fight. In fact, the fun was just beginning. Having got back up from the kind of heavy knockdown he had no real business getting back up from, Kiladze had more surprises in store for the still-learning Ajagba.
The third-round was one of the wildest, most unpredictable three-minutes you will ever see. Hurt again by a smashing right hand and wobbling all over the place, Kiladze did everything but go down. Ajagba actually backed off, perhaps expecting to see his man drop or see the referee stop the fight. Big mistake. Kiladze summoned up some strength from somewhere and threw a clubbing right hand counter shot that decked Ajagba. By now everyone in attendance was going nuts.
The firefight raged on into the fifth, when Ajagba again dropped Kiladze with his bomb of a right, this time even more heavily. But up bounced Kiladze one more time. The fight could have been stopped right then and there but, due to the near-miracle comeback he was able to produce in that epid third-round, Kiladze was allowed to go on. Showing astonishing courage, Kiladze tried to fight back but he was soon saved by his corner who threw in the towel. Even then, Kiladze wanted to fight on.
An incredible fight (you could say a poor man’s Foreman-Lyle). A fight that showed us all again how nothing can be taken for granted when the heavyweights are in action.
Ajagba, trained by Ronnie Shields, is now 12-0(10). Kiladze, who will get more fights due to his gameness, falls to 26-5-1(18).