HBO World Championship Boxing Results: Sergey Kovalev wins by Unanimous Decision
By: Matthew N. Becher
On a special Monday night edition of World Championship Boxing, HBO presented a title fight from Ekaterinburg, Russia. The fight between the WBO, IBF & WBA Light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev (30-0-1 26KO) and the challenger Isaac Chilemba (26-4-2 10KO) was a homecoming for Kovalev, who last fought at the DIVS in Russia in 2011, when he defeated Roman Simakov, who tragically fell into a coma after that match and passed away three days later.
This was most importantly a tune up fight for Kovalev, who has a date set for a mega fight in November against former unified Super Middleweight champion Andre Ward.
Kovalev started the fight as the aggressor, looking for and targeting the head, as usual. Chilemba was able to pump out and land a steady jab.
Chilemba showed to be a very strong and tough opponent, landing his best shots to Kovalev’s head, more often than most of Kovalevs previous opponents.
Unfortunately Chilembas lack of power did little to stop the come forward style of Kovalev.
Kovalev was mostly looking for head shots and possibly working on some different techniques instead of ending the fight in certain situations. After a big right hand landed in the seventh round, knocking Chilemba down, Kovalev may not have gone “all in” to end the fight. As well as in the eighth round, after landing a monster shot, snapping back the head of Chilemba, Kovalev stepped off the gas pedal and was content with putting in some more work.
Chilemba landed some solid shots of his own, but Kovalev never looked hurt against the hardest, cleanest shots that Chilemba could land. Also Kovalev may have possibly wanted to get in a full twelve round fight, after knowing that he was not in any real trouble. He will not be fighting again until November, so the extra rounds could prove vital for the future fight.
The fight went longer than most expected, but Kovalev still looked extremely dominant. The next step is the match up against Andre Ward. It is the best fight that can be made in the sport and this was a great stay busy fight for the Light heavyweight champ, and hopefully erasing some of the demons that have stayed with him from the last time he fought in his native land.
Kovalev UD12 117-110, 116-111, 118-109