It’s been quite the weekend for the cruiserweights, what with the WBSS battles proving entertaining, a little controversial, and certainly newsworthy. But a fight at 200 pounds that might have flown too far under the radar than it deserved, in Ilunga Makabu Vs. Dmitry Kudryashov, gave fans a genuine Fight of the Year candidate earlier today.
Going into the fight that contested the WBC silver strap, those in the know knew full well that today’s fight had zero chance of going the distance; perhaps no more than a couple of rounds. And so the violence transpired, if going a little further than many expected.
The final result: Makabu WTKO5 Kudryashov, does not tell the full story. The action was savage, bloody and brutal.
Southpaw Makabu of South Africa boxed a cautious opening round and “Russian Hammer” Kudryashov was equally content to feel his way into things – for once. That said, both men felt the other guy’s power here in round-one. Then, in round-two, all hell broke loose.
The two men, pretty much simultaneously, saw fit to abandon any thought for safety or well-being as they traded fiercely in a corner. It was breathtaking stuff, and then, as both men landed left hooks at the same time, Kudryashov went down. Makabu wobbled to the opposite corner, almost going down himself. The Russian banger got back up and the battle continued. Kudryahsov was stung again just as the bell rang to end a sensational round.
Kudryashov tried to box on the ropes in the third, another round that saw both men hurt and showing it. Which way would this one go? By the fourth-round Kudryashov was dripping blood, his nose busted. It was gory stuff yet neither man was showing anything like a faint heart. The end came in the fifth, at 2:36, as a blood-drenched Kudryahsov was eating too much leather, the ref diving in.
Makabu, arguably the most rubbery-legged winner of a big fight so far this year, may or may not get another world title chance. For now though, the tough and gutsy South African needs a good break in which to get his senses back. As for Kudryashov, it promises to be a long road back for this thrilling fighter who epitomises the description, ‘chinny banger.’
31 year old Makabu is now 25-2(24). 33 year old Kudryashov falls to 23-3(23).