This evening in Poland, Congolese heavyweight Martin Bakole, based in Scotland, scored an easy yet somewhat impressive third round stoppage win over previously unbeaten “Hulk” Ihor Shevadzutskyi.
Bakole, who tipped-in at a whopping 280 pounds, was coming off his big win over Tony Yoka and the 29 year old enjoyed himself as he worked on his target practice. Bakole scored a heavy knockdown in round two and he opened up on a stuck on the ropes “Hulk” to get the stoppage in round three. Time was :45 of the third. Bakole is now 19-1(14). Shevadzutskyi is now 10-1(8).
Bakole, who has been calling for a big fight with a big name for some time, showed fast hands despite his bulk, and “Hulk” Shevadzutskyi was out of his depth. Bakole worked the head and he also dipped to the body, his speed making things easy for him against his game but lumbering and outclassed foe.
In round two, Bakole unleashed a right uppercut followed by a left hook to the head and down went “Hulk,” who has weighed-in at 276 pounds. The 33 year old Ukrainian got up and he tried to fight back, but the writing was firmly on the wall. Bakole pinned his man in a corner at the start of round three and he wouldn’t let up, this leaving the third man no choice but to dive in and halt the fight.
Bakole may need to shed a few pounds, yet he did look speedy and quite comfortable at the 280 pound mark tonight. Trained by Billy Nelson, Bakole wants a fight with a Daniel Dubois or a Zhilei Zhang, or a Tyson Fury or a Oleksandr Usyk. Tonight’s winning performance did little for Bakole, yet it at least kept him sharp and ready, and fans do like to see a heavyweight stoppage. Bakole really did a number on Yoka back in May of last year and it was good to see him back in the ring today.
Bakole is for many fans and experts the dark horse, the danger man of the heavyweight division. As for “The Hulk,” he was badly exposed tonight and it will be a long way back for the 33 year old if he is ever to get another chance against another quality fighter.
Post-fight, Bakole was all smiles and he said he made a statement tonight. Bakole wants Dillian Whyte, he wants Dubois, and he also wants Oleksandr Usyk.
“I’m ready. If Dubois doesn’t [get Usyk], I’m ready,” Bakole said. “I’m calling them out.”