Rabchenko Gets IBF Eliminator

SERGEY RABCHENKO will face Detroit’s Tony Harrison in an IBF super-welterweight title eliminator on the undercard of Santa Cruz v Frampton in Brooklyn on July 30.

As well as being a step towards a world title, the fight gives Rabchenko the opportunity to showcase his skills to a whole new audience. The Belarussian puncher has been hoping to make a splash in the United States for some time, but his path has become much clearer since he inked terms with Al Haymon and Leon Margules in 2015.

“This is the start of realising my dream,” Sergey said. “America is the Mecca of boxing so it is a huge privilege for me to be asked to fight there. “American fans like to see knockouts and I like to knock people out so I think they will like what they see. I think I can build a fanbase there.

“I am hungrier than ever. I want to get to the top. I wasn’t at my best when I went to Australia to fight Anthony Mundine, although I still think I won, but this time I will be at my very best.”

Harrison is certainly a formidable opponent. A product of the world famous Kronk Gym, the 25-year-old won 19 of his 23 victories by knockout and last time out he halted former world title challenger Fernando Guerrero inside six rounds. He has also been a sparring partner of Gennedy Golovkin on a number of occasions.

“I have not seen much of Harrison, but I am ready for anyone,” Rabchenko said. “People say he is a very good fighter with good power. I’m not worried. I have good power as well and I think I will have too much for him.”

Zhanat Zhakiyanov Scores Sixth Round Stoppage Over Hector Guzman in Bulgaria

KAZAKH Powerhouse Zhanat Zhakiyanov won the WBA International title and scored his 12 successive stoppage when he halted Argentina’s Hector Guzman in the sixth round in Vratsa, Bulgaria on Saturday night (May 9).

The Ricky Hatton-trained bantamweight looked set to have an early night when he dropped Guzman with a wide-arching left hook in the opening round. But things nearly turned around when Zhakiyanov suffered a flash knockdown from a counter right a round later.

Unhurt, Zhakiyanov quickly took control of the contest and by the fourth it was only a matter of time before he found the blows to close the show.

The end came in the sixth when Zhanat rocked Guzman with a hellacious left hook and then knocked him flat onto his back with a pair of rights.

The victory takes his record to 24-1 (17 KOs) and will move him closer to a world title shot. At present, Zhakiyanov is rated at number three by the WBA, number one by the WBC, number seven by the IBF and number five by the WBO.

On the same bill, Hatton Promotions’ unbeaten light-welterweight prospect Kiryl Relikh extended his record to 19-0 (17 KOs) and picked up his first professional title with a two-round blowout of experienced Brazilian Lazaro Santos de Jesus.

Contesting the vacant WBA Inter-Continental crown, Relikh sent his opponent to the canvas in the opening round with a right hook followed by a jolting jab, and he finished things a session later by again dropping Santos de Jesus with a left before the Brazilian’s corner man entered to the ring to save his many from further punishment.

The bill also saw the return of popular Belarusian Sergey Rabchenko following his highly controversial points defeat to Anthony Mundine last November.

Rabchenko, 29, took his time to get the measure of Walter Osvaldo Gaston Calvo before halting him in the fourth of a scheduled six. A solid uppercut followed by a right rocked Calvo and the visitor’s corner decided to throw the towel in despite the fact their man was still swinging.

WBC Orders Anthony Mundine vs Sergey Rabchenko Rematch

DURING the Annual Convention in Las Vegas, the World Boxing Council ordered an immediate rematch between light-middleweights Sergey Rabchenko and Anthony Mundine.
 
Mundine won the WBC Silver title after being awarded a controversial split decision over the Ricky Hatton-trained Belarusian in Melbourne, Australia on November 12.
 
Mundine had hoped that the victory would put him in line for a shot at Floyd Mayweather Jnr, but the WBC’s Executive Committee has decided that the highly contentious nature of the result warrants another showdown between the pair.
 
“I’m delighted to hear that the WBC have ordered a rematch,” said Hatton, who attended last’s weeks convention along with Hatton Promotions’ international matchmaker, Philippe Fondu.
 
“I’ve said before that it wasn’t the worst decision ever, but Sergey definitely won the fight and he wasn’t helped by the fact that two of the judges, not affiliated to the WBC, were from Melbourne.
 
“It was a phenomenal performance from Mundine and I take my hat off to him, but Sergey outworked him for most of the fight and should have been given much more of the rounds.
 
“Sergey also inflicted a knockdown and the referee didn’t score it. Thankfully, now Sergey has a chance to set the record straight and get the win he deserved the first time around.
 
“I want to thank the WBC for seeing sense and giving us this opportunity.”
 
Negotiations for the rematch will begin in the New Year.