By Alexey Sukachev
Moscow, Russia - Dmitry Chudinov (12-0-2, 8 KOs) capped off a very busy year for him with a bang, outslugging tough Colombian puncher Juan Camilo Novoa (22-6-1, 20 KOs) in a brutal two-way action, finally getting a deserved sixth-round TKO with five seconds remaining in the session. Chudinov is now the WBA interim middleweight champion. The vacant WBA regular title will be contested between British Martin Murray and Australian Jarrod Fletcher on Feb. 1 in Monaco. WBA Super champion Gennady Golovkin defends his regalia in the same card against Ghanaian Osumanu Adama.
WBA #6 Russian started to rumble with a very hard-hitting former (2004) Olympian from the starting bell. Chudinov, 27, chose Novoa's head as the primary target, while the Colombian, five years his senior at 32, preferred hard body shots in the opener. Chudinov did just a bit better at the end to grab this round. The second one was also in his favour. Both combatants were very determined and threw multiple punches. The local hero was just a notch more active, his punches being a little bit more powerful than those of the Colombian. It also looked as it Novoa couldn't fully stand Chudinov's punching power.
The Colombian revived himself in the third, landing some damaging right uppercuts to trouble Chudinov. WBA #7 Novoa did also a better work defensively but again lost the very end of the round, when he was considerably wobbled by the Russian. In a wild fourth round, Chudinov did some damage on Novoa before being his blatantly with the Colombian's head, opening a cut over his right eye. There were some heated moments in a forced break, and referee Guillermo Perez Pineda had taken a point from Novoa. Angered Chudinov ended that round on a high note.
In the fifth it became obvious that Novoa was wilting under Chudinov's heavy pressure. His punch output decreased significantly, while the Russian landed a number of unanswered punches. The Columbian was in survival mode late on and also at the start of the sixth. The Russian continued to connect with barrages of cracking blows but Novoa was nowhere to fall, having his head rolling from one of the Chudinov's fists. Finally, eating more leather he was rightfully waved off by the referee with just five seconds remaining.
A huge win for Chudinov, who started this year as a 7-0-1 prospect and finished as a legitimate threat in the 160lb division and an owner of a little-regarded interim belt. Promoter Vladimir Hryunov was instrumental in Chudinov's 5-0-1, 4 KOs, year, which also included stoppage wins over Milton Nunez, Jorge Navarro and Grady Brewer - among others.