Kell Brook Stops Rabchenko Early
By: Ste Rowen
In Sheffield, on Saturday night Kell Brook impressively marked his return to the ring since May 2017, by making light work of Belarussian, Sergey Rabchenko, stopping him in the second round.
Kell stepped on the gas from the first round, looking to take the centre of the ring and, whilst Rabchenko seemed game, the Sheffield native was clearly the superior boxer. With 1:52 left of the second round, Brook landed a beautiful right-hand uppercut, visibly shaking his opponent which set up the finisher, as Kell followed up with another big right hand, sending Sergey to the canvas, and keeping him there for the count.
So, the former IBF welterweight champion moves to 37-2 (26KOs), speaking to Sky Sports post-fight, Kell seemed more determined than ever to state his claim as one of Britain’s best, and without naming names, Brook made a call out to the rest of the 154lb division,
‘You thought you got rid of me. I’m putting everyone on notice. I’m the terminator and I’ll be back… Another win. I’m putting everyone on notice, I’m here to stay.’
Jermell Charlo called out Brook via Twitter on Friday as a possible June opponent, but there was no mention of the WBC champion after Brooks return to winning ways, the focus, from promoter Eddie Hearn, seemed to solely be on setting up a fight with fellow Brit, Amir Khan,
‘There aren’t the big names in the division at 154lb, well guess what? There is now… Kell Brook has passed the test. Amir Khan has got to pass the test April 21st, Kell will be ringside for that as well.’
‘Kell wants to fight in June. Back to the gym on Monday. Let’s get busy, let’s make up for lost time.’
Arguably fight of the night, on an underwhelming undercard, was Gavin McDonnell’s unanimous decision victory over Gamal Yafai. Gamal, was unbeaten (14-0) going into the bout but as the rounds drew on, experience was king as McDonnell, now 19-1 (5KOs), began to dominate after the early rounds and there was no question over who had won when the final bell went.
McDonnell, whose only defeat came at the hands of WBC super-bantamweight champion, Rey Vargas, seemed ready again to talk about challenging at the top level of his division,
‘If I was to lose tonight it would have killed me. I knew my career was on the line…I just want big fights and as long as I’m moving in the right direction, a world title will come.’
Hoping to avenge his May 2017 defeat to Lenroy Thomas, and fighting in running shoes, Dave Allen left the Sheffield Arena disappointed after an accidental clash of heads in the first round put an end to the rematch. Allen was stalking the Commonwealth champion early when, with 44 seconds left of the first round, the two butted heads as Thomas landed an uppercut. The referee immediately called a timeout as the blood came pouring from a deep cut above the ‘Doncaster De La Hoya’s’ right eye, and minutes later put an end to the bout, calling a technical draw.
One of the early bouts of the card saw super middleweight, Rocky Fielding, 26-1 (14KOs) dominate Czech journeyman, Karel Horejsek over 8 rounds. Post-fight Eddie Hearn revealed that Fielding, most likely due to his first-round stoppage of David Brophy in September, had managed to manoeuvre his way up the rankings and into a shot at WBO champion Gilberto Ramirez,
‘We’ve been in talks this week. It looks like it will take place in June, we’re just working on the deal now, it’s quite close…The matchup would likely take place stateside and as long as the deal is right, we will accept the fight.’
Frampton Decisions Santa Cruz in Slugfest, Harrison and Garcia Win by TKO
Showtime World Championship Boxing Results: Frampton Decisions Santa Cruz in Slugfest, Harrison and Garcia Win by TKO
By: William Holmes
Tonight’s edition of Showtime Championship Boxing was presented by Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) and broadcast live from the Barcalys Center in Brooklyn, New York.
The undercard was packed with televised worthy bouts. Amanda Serrano was able to retain her WBO World Featherweight Championship with a first round TKO over Calixta Silgado. This victory sets up a possible title fight with fellow undefeated Heather “The Heat” Hardy, who was in attendance and watched the bout keenly from ringside.
Two bouts were televised on Showtime Extreme before the start of the main card on showtime. Tevin Farmer was able to score a mild upset over Ivan Redkach with scores of 99-89, 98-90, and 98-90 in the lightweight division. Paulie Malignaggi faced off against Gabriel Bracero in the main event of Showtime Extreme and was able to win the decision victory in the welterweight division with scores of 96-94, 98-92, and 98-92.
Photo Credit: Andy Samuelson/Premier Boxing Champions
The first televised bout on Showtime was between Tony Harrison (23-1) and Sergey Rabchenko (27-1) in the junior middleweight division.
Tony Harrison, a Detroit native that was formerly trained by the late Emmanuel Steward, is a boxer with a lot of promise that lost some of his luster when he was upset by Willie Nelson.
Both boxers fought out of an orthodox stance and felt each other out in the opening round. Harrison began to throw more straight right hands and combinations in the second round and was starting to find his target.
Rabchenko was more aggressive in the third and fourth rounds than Harrison, but he wasn’t able to land many punches of significance as Harrison was able to keep his jab in the face of Rabchenko and out of range.
The fifth, sixth, and seventh rounds played out like the earlier rounds, with Harrison pop shotting Rabchenko but not taking any risks to try and finish the fight.
Fans were starting to boo the action in the seventh round and that continued into the eighth, though Harrison was able to land some hard left hooks to the head of Rabchenko.
Harrison scored a knockdown n the ninth round with crisp straight right hand to the temple of Rabchenko that put him on wobbly legs and down to the mat. He was able to get up before the ten count but still had shaky legs and waived off the bout.
Tony Harrison wins by TKO at 1:18 of the ninth round.
Mikey Garcia (34-0) returned from a two year layoff to face Elio Rojas (24-2) in the Super Lightweight Division in the co-main event of the night.
Garcia refused to touch the gloves of Rojas at the start of the bout. Garcia looked good, physically, in the junior welterweight division, but was tentative in the opening round and might have given it away on inactivity alone.
Rojas threw more punches and landed more punches than Garcia in the second round, but Garcia started to warm up near the end and was able to land a hard lead left hook and straight right hand.
Garcia started off the third round by landing some piston like jabs and was chasing Rojas around the ring. He was able to land a short left hook out of nowhere that sent Rojas to the mat and on one knee. Rojas was able to get back to his feet and land some counter punches when the action continued, but was cracked with a hard straight right hand that sent him to the mat for a second time. Rojas, to his credit, was able to survive the round and second knockdown.
Rojas was able to stay on his feet in the fourth round and connect with an occasional straight right hand, Garcia, however, pressed forward the entire round and landed the heavier shots in the round.
Garcia scored another knockdown in the fifth round with a straight right hand. Rojas beat the count again, but got cracked with a left hook from Garcia that sent him to the mat for the fourth, and final time.
Mikey Garcia wins by TKO at 2:02 of the fifth round.
The main event of the evening was between Leo Santa Cruz (32-0-1) and Carl Frampton (22-0) for the WBA World Featherweight Championship.
The upper sections in the Barclays Center were closed off, but the bottom half of the arena was packed and many fans of Carl Frampton were in attendance and were very loud and supportive of their fighter and very hostile towards Santa Cruz.
The crowd was deafening in the opening round and both boxers seemed content with trading leather rather than feeling each other out. Santa Cruz appeared to have landed more, but the crowd roared every time Frampton landed a punch and may have titled the scorecards in his favor.
The crowd continued to sing in the second round to spur their fighter on, and Frampton got them exited when he rocked Santa Cruz with a counter left hook and sent him stumbling backwards. Santa Cruz was able to stay on his feet, and land good shots of his own, but that punch likely won Frampton the round.
Santa Cruz looked recovered by the third round and continued to come forward throwing a high volume of punches, but Frampton landed several crisp counters and dug in some heavy body shots.
The fourth round had several good exchanges, but Santa Cruz appeared to land the higher number of punches and caught Frampton by surprise with a good right hand to the temple. Both fighters landed, and took, several hard shots to the head.
The action slowed down in the fifth round, and the slow down clearly favored Frampton. His counter punches were more noticeable this round and Santa Cruz looked frustrated.
The action picked up again in the sixth round and featured both boxers standing in the middle of the ring and exchanging and firing at will, but Santa Cruz appeared to get the better of Frampton and did good work to the body and head.
Santa Cruz did state that he would begin to take over the fight in the sixth round in pre-fight interviews.
It looked in the seventh round that Santa Cruz’s prediction might come true, as he kept up the pressure and took the fight to Frampton. Frampton was still able to land an occasional counter, but he was not landing them as cleanly as he did in the opening rounds.
Frampton retook control in the eighth round by landing good shots to the body when in tight and connected on several hooks to the head of Santa Cruz.
Frampton did well in the opening minute of the ninth round and was matching the work rate of Santa Cruz, which not many people can do. However, Santa Cruz connected with two hard right hands near the end of the round and was doing some damage on Frampton when his back was against the ropes.
The tenth round could have been scored either way, as Santa Cruz pressed the action but Frampton was landing some good counter shots.
The eleventh round was one of Santa Cruz’s best rounds. He landed several hard right hands and appeared to hurt Frampton once or twice, but Frampton was able to land good shots of his own.
The crowd was on its feet in the final round and neither boxer could have felt comfortable going to the scorecards. Several violent exchanges were made in this round, and both boxers landed their fair share of punches and like several rounds before it, could have gone either way.
It was an exciting and action packed title fight. The judges scored it 114-114, 116-112, 117-111 for Carl Frampton for a majority decision victory.
Undercard Quick Recap:
Josh Taylor (6-0) defeated Evinii Dixon (7-15-1) by TKO at the end of the second round in the junior welterweight division.
Min-Wook Kim (16-1) defeated Louis Cruz (11-2-1) by TKO at 2:33 of the first round in the junior welterweight division.
Jose Gomez (8-0) defeated Josh Crespo (5-4-3) by TKO at 2:31 of the first round in the featherweight division.
Conrad Cummings (10-0-1) defeated Dante Moore (9-1-2) by decision with scores of 59-53, 58-54, and 58-54 in the middleweight division.
Amanda Serrano (29-1) retained her WBO World Featherweight Championship with a TKO victory over Calixta Silgado (14-7-3) at 1:41 of the first round.
Tevin Farmer (22-4-1) defeated Ivan Redkach (19-2-1) by decision with scores of 99-89, 98-90, and 98-90 in the lightweight division.
Paulie Malignaggi (36-7) defeated Gabriel Bracero (24-3) by scores of 96-94, 98-92, and 98-92 in the welterweight division.