By Johnny Walker
It was a big night for Polish heavyweights at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut, Friday night as both Artur Szpilka and Marius Wach scored impressive knockout wins in their respective bouts.
The flamboyant Polish bad boy Szpilka (7-0, 5 KO) entered the ring dressed in orange prison garb, a nod to a recent stint in a Polish jail for soccer hooliganism. The 6′ 3″ southpaw dedicated the fight to the people he was locked up with in Poland, and then went out and decimated David Williams (6-5-1, 2 KO) with an impressive mixture of power and speed, knocking him down a minute into the fight and then knocking him out with two big left hands at 1:53 of round one.
Szpilka, 22, definitely seems to be a heavyweight to watch in the future. For his fellow Pole Mariusz Wach, 31, however, the future is now.
Rumored to be in line for a shot at one of the world heavyweight champion Klitschko brothers if he looked good against veteran heavyweight Kevin McBride, Wach definitely lived up to his end of the bargain.
While the Irishman McBride was definitely not in prime shape at 295 soft-looking pounds on a 6’6” frame, he also wasn’t in much different condition when he went twelve rounds with another Polish heavyweight, Tomasz Adamek, in April of this year. The 6’8” Wach, looking lithe and moving well, quickly took advantage of McBride’s lack of conditioning by peppering his ample belly with hard punches, as well as by winging some nasty overhand rights at the Irishman’s head.
McBride already seemed desperate by round two, and he started lunging around the ring, trying to rough Wach up. By doing so, McBride did manage to land one big shot, but Wach took it well. In round three, a focused Wach continued his body attack, and McBride was left looking the worse for wear, with a mouse under his left eye.
By round four, McBride was visibly gassed, and Wach went downstairs with more body punches, and then upstairs, landing a crushing right hand to McBride’s chin that sent the massive Irishman sprawling to the canvas, knocked out stone cold at 2:25. McBride (35-10-1) was carried out on a stretcher, and the amiable Irishman managed to wave a glove to the crowd to signal that he was OK. Let’s hope he is.
If Tomasz Adamek was rewarded with a title shot after going twelve rounds with McBride, it seems that Mariusz Wach, now 25-0 with 13 KOs, might now deserve the same for knocking the Irishman out early in their fight.
So, Wlad and Vitali, how about it?